To the Editor:
I was in college during the Sixties and I remember reading excerpts of Rachel Carson’s "Silent Spring" in The New Yorker, Betty Friedan’s "The Feminine Mystique" and Jane Jacob’s "The Death and Life of Great American Cities." All of them -- both books and women -- were inspirational, all of them influential and all of them courageous. Who they were and what they stood for made an impression on my actions and values. Rachel Carson provoked and motivated us to do something about pesticides and connected us once again to the beauty of the natural world. Betty Friedan’s book was a trigger for women’s rights and a catalyst for personal fulfillment. And I marched. Jane Jacobs protected us from anonymity. She opened my eyes to what was right in front of me: my neighborhood. Growing up in Brooklyn, my world became bigger because of the diversity. Shopkeepers were my heroes, and sidewalks connected me to everything. The buildings were a big hodgepodge, with retail below and living above, like my father’s bakery. There were places to hang out and talk and benches to on sit and people-watch. Today, Jane Jacobs' ideas are referred to as “social capital” and are worth a lot. When my husband and I moved to Ossining, we saw a place we wanted to be part of: diverse, community-friendly, respectful of history. We learned that Ossining is safe place to live, with good schools, and it was in the process of building a strong downtown to secure an economic future. On Nov. 4, I am getting up early and casting my vote to re-elect Bill Hanauer, our mayor. Because Bill’s leadership and accomplishments are on behalf of our health and well-being through his environmental action, support for our children’s education, commitment to social justice and the holistic growth of our downtown, I know Bill wants the best for all of us. Sincerely, Rochelle Turshen
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