WestView Letter April 2015: Response to New Laws

Response to New Laws

Hi, George Capsis.

I want to thank you, once again, for your help in my housing crisis and, as you said, giving “voice to the voiceless.” That is certainly one of the best possibilities of journalism.

I feel, however, that your article calling for the elimination of rent control and stabilization, along with sending senior tenants to Florida or the outer boroughs so that energetic young people can replace them in Manhattan housing at low market rates, is advocacy for disaster and cruelty. George, since you are a senior citizen, how would you like to be pushed out of your home and moved somewhere else? A lot of us seniors are not stuck in our low-rent apartments. We actually like it here. We are not preventing energetic young people from living in Manhattan. Nor are we dull and useless, as you know yourself. There’s room for all of us. Welcome to them!

Also, your article seems based on the assumption that young people all have a fair amount of money. In fact, many of them would barely be able to afford the low rent I’m paying, which is now $602.76. They’re struggling to make it at McDonald’s and elsewhere; many have children, and sometimes parents, to support. The fresh young faces you seem to be thinking of are college grads with business degrees and the like, Wall Streeters, 1%-ers (and a college degree of any kind doesn’t guarantee a high income, as my experience shows). Oh, landlords would just love you. They want to get rid of rent control and stabilization, too.

In fact, how would you make sure landlords would charge the low market rates you mention? The sky’s the limit when landlords charge whatever they please.

I think my landlord would like to shake your hand. I hear he is trying to get all his rent-stabilized tenants out. He is consumed with greed. Perhaps I’ve actually gotten comparatively soft treatment. There are stories that workers have gone into apartments when the tenants weren’t there, opening up the faucets and flooding the apartments–then claiming the tenants did it.

That’s what you get when landlords can do what they want.

George, I don’t want to make fun of you, but what you’ve proposed is a landlord’s golden dream.

Meanwhile, don’t let them ship you off to Oshkosh. You’re not too old for Manhattan.

Carol F. Yost

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