BP Blasts Paper for Comparing Bronx to Baghdad
Calls Bx Albanians Mobsters
Letter to the Editor:
(In an open letter to the Litchfield County Times, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr. blasted the paper for what he calls “libelous” attacks on the Bronx and its residents)
To The Editor:
I am writing in response to the libelous and entirely unforgivable opinion piece published in your newspaper last week, “Monet on the Hudson, a Bronx Tale From Deyan Ranko Brashich.” While this piece was written ostensibly to promote an exhibit at the New York Botanical Garden, the author instead spends his time badmouthing the Bronx in outdated ways.
The errors in Mr. Brashich’s piece are numerous, and a simple phone call to my office or any number of other Bronx institutions would have made that clear. Mr. Brashich writes that the Bronx lacks vegetation and that the Bronx River is polluted; ignoring the fact that 25 percent of our borough is parkland, and that the Bronx River is so clean today that beavers have returned to make their homes there.
The author complains that our borough is covered in graffiti, calls the Bronx a “ghetto” and compares our borough to Baghdad. These are disgusting, false descriptions, and serve no purpose other than to denigrate the amazing community myself and 1.4 million others call home.
The list goes on. In perhaps the most disgusting portion of this piece, Mr. Brashich manages to slander the hardworking Albanian community of the Bronx, referring to them as “America’s newest version of the Mafia.” To refer to the proud Albanian community in such a derogatory manner is absolutely disgusting, and it is a characterization that the entire Bronx resents.
To be fair, your newspaper is allowed to publish whatever it likes, no matter how shameful, repulsive or lacking in truth it may be. With that said, one would hope that the articles that run under your banner would meet basic standards of decency, rather than rely on the stereotypes of the 1970s to make a point about a Monet exhibit.
Had Mr. Brashich actually bothered to pay attention to the Bronx during his visit, he would have seen a beautiful place that has made great strides in the areas of housing, economic development, education and public safety, just to name a few. On behalf of the people of the Bronx I demand a retraction of this garbage, and I would hope that your newspaper would not resort to publishing such nonsense in the future.
I would also invite you and your readers to visit ilovethebronx.com, the official website of the Bronx Tourism Council, to learn more about all of the wonderful things that are happening in the Bronx.
Sincerely, Ruben Diaz Jr.