A Better Vision for New York

By Ira Harris

While traveling through upstate New York over the Labor Day weekend, I encountered many desolate towns just aching for business and industry to exist there. Once thriving towns, in decline for decades, with infrastructure still standing, they are now boarded up and idle ghost towns.

From smaller towns to larger cities in upstate New York, the potential for industry and a better way of living can be achieved with the right vision. New York has been accustomed to packing more people into the crowded Five Boro cityscape like sardines, always with progressive politicians pushing for more low-income housing.  

Why would anybody want to live in a rat-infested public housing development, which creates a mindset that one just can’t do any better in life?  It’s not advantageous to constantly beat the drum of “low-income housing.” It creates an attitude of low expectations and dumbs down society.

This is where a vision of a thriving upstate New York can once again revitalize the once great Empire State. I believe it would start with a high-speed transit rail system from New York City to towns throughout the state. New York’s present commuter rail system doesn’t cut it speed-wise. High speed rail for NYS has been consistently promised by politicians since the 1990’s but never delivered, and has not been a priority since then.

High speed rail would create jobs and enterprise at town centers along the route including restaurants, clothing stores, hotels, groceries, auto repair, taxi service, cleaners, and all other establishments and facilities that make for a thriving community. This vision has the potential for urban dwellers of NYC to have the opportunity to afford homes with ample acreage in rural communities, who could otherwise only afford low-income housing.  In addition, imagine the benefit of less traffic on the congested streets of NYC, because of the many folks who have chosen this path of greater opportunity. It’s a win-win.

Imagine a high-speed commute from 200 miles outside of NYC, coming in to work in less time than being stuck in traffic on the Long Island Expressway driving in from Queens or Long Island to Manhattan. Then you would return home early that evening to a beautiful house with the kids playing safely in the front yard, and a beautiful flower garden, wonderful schools, safe streets, friendly neighbors, and little or no traffic as you drive through town. Is this not a better scenario than living in a congested cityscape run by self-serving politicians who are not looking out for you?

New York, through Schumer’s push, received $6.5 billion for a tunnel to New Jersey with no idea of the final costs and no vision of how it will benefit the middle and lower class citizens of New York. The high-speed rail plan is a vision for a better way of life  for families throughout the state.  The taxpayer money we are spending for illegal aliens to be housed in NYC amounts to billions of dollars that can be better put to use towards a project of this magnitude for a fraction of the cost. Who thinks of taking positive opportunities away from legal citizens and spending their tax dollars on those who have never contributed a penny to our society? What about showing some compassion the citizens of NYC deserve and have worked for their entire lives?

Yes, feasibility studies would have to be conducted for the best routes and cost of project, and promotional dollars would have to be spent on informing families of the wonderful opportunities that await them. But after traveling upstate and seeing these depressed towns, I believe it is well worth it. The vision or idea of getting citizens out of the city hellhole and into God’s country at affordable prices is well worth a closer look.

Ira Harris is 2nd Vice President of Queens Village Republican Club

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