This is in response to James Sanford’s letter that appeared in the Hoboken Reporter on October 20. One of his comments concerned a remark that was made by Mr. Carmelo Garcia regarding his use of the phrase “ethic cleansing” to describe the attempts of a certain faction in Hoboken to advance that particular agenda. The remark that was made expressed outrage that Mr. Garcia, in using that phrase, was essentially equating what is transpiring in Hoboken with the Holocaust. The idea was expressed that Mr. Garcia, in having used that phrase, was being excessive. I, in point of fact, do not believe that he was.
In approximately 2005 or 2006, I met a man right here in Hoboken who told me of a website that existed at the time (whether or not it still exists, I didn’t know, as I do not happen to be internet savvy) that was actually entitled (I kid you not) “Let’s blow up the projects,” referring to the projects in this city. This was also, apparently a local website. It should also be noted that the man who related this hideous factoid to me was, by all appearances, nothing of what one might typically imagine to be the type of person to hold such a heinous point of view. By all appearances, he was well-dressed, otherwise intelligent and well-educated, having lived in Hoboken for a number of years while prospering from a lucrative accounting career in New York, in other words, this man seemed to be the epitome of what not a few people in this city would regard as “nice,” but when the surface was scratched, what emerged was anything except nice. It should be noted that one of the first steps that the Nazis took in implementing Hitler’ “final solution” was in permanently displacing people that were deemed to be, for a variety of arbitrary reasons, “undesirable,” from their homes, in many cases, homes in which they had lived for generations.
Also, we need look no further for a “history lesson” than to recall Hoboken’s own shameful past in the 1980’s where scores of people were driven from their homes, 54 having actually perished by a series of “mysterious” fires that were actually deliberately set. It is safe to say that most of these people did not happen to be of the “Caucasian persuasion.”
To believe (and therefore, in this instance, to pretend) that there are no people in Hoboken with this agenda is frankly, more than a little disingenuous. So, to my way of thinking (and I dare say other people’s as well), Mr. Garcia most definitely need not “apologize” for simply having the guts to tell it like it is.