Trying to clear his name
Mar 09, 2010 | 16605 views | 3 3 comments | 506 506 recommendations | email to a friend | print
There is certainly something to be said for never giving up. Of course, there is also something to be said for knowing when to give up.

Apparently Bob Friedrich is still smarting from his loss to David Weprin in last month's special election to fill the vacant seat in the 24th Assembly District. Admittedly, it's been a rough couple of months for Friedrich, who lost to David's brother Mark Weprin last November in a City Council race. To make matters even worse, it has the appearance that the Weprin brothers were beating up on Friedrich: the race for the Assembly was to replace Mark Weprin, who left the Assembly to replace his brother David - the new assemblyman - in the City Council.

In both elections, Friedrich, a registered Democrat, ran on the Republican line.

And Friedrich is still smarting over a mailer that David Weprin sent out during the campaign that criticized Friedrich for being soft on hate crimes. What really got under Friedrich's skin, however, was that the mailer featured a Nazi Swastika. And now, nearly a month after the election, Friedrich hasn't let the issue go.

On Monday night, he appeared before the Northeast Queens Jewish to deliver a speech asking the group to denounce the mailer as vicious hate speech. It was going to be a tough crowd for Friedrich - Corey Bearak is the chairman of the group and he also ran Weprin's campaign, and Jack Friedman is the president. Oh yeah, did we mention that he also used to be David Weprin's chief of staff while he was a member of the City Council? We're tracking down more on the evening's events, and will bring them to you next week.

Friedrich also plans to make an appearance before Community Board 8 on Wednesday night (after this paper goes to press) to ask the members of that board to denounce the mailer, as well, details of which we'll bring you next week also.

Perhaps Friedrich really is disturbed that his name was loosely associated with a symbol of hate, and his motive here is to clear his name and unite the community. Again, perhaps. Another possibility is that he is planning to challenge Weprin again this November, and is laying the groundwork for an eventual campaign, one that paints Weprin as a hate-mongerer who divided the community. It's your call.

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Glen Oaks Resident
March 11, 2010
Bob has been misusing our resourses at Glen Oaks in order to promote his political candidacy. I would never vote for him because of that. Now Bob has informed me that he is a right wing lunatic also! OMG!
john q
March 10, 2010
Queens Reader- I think you are missing the whole point of Friedric's position. It is precisely the problem of a swastika or other hate symbol being painted on a building that Mr. Friedrich position would treat as graffitti. This guy needs to relax.
Queens Reader
March 10, 2010
You ask what Friedrich's motive is. Perhaps it is about holding elected official to basic standards of decency that the rest of us must adhere to. Mr. Weprin crossed that line when he authorized the use of a swastika in a hate mail flyer and has so far refused to comment.

The Queens Ledger seems to feel it was only a swastika on a postcard distributed to thousands of Jewish households, ho hum, we should all just move on. Next time someone paints a swastika on a building, I will remind the Queens Ledger, hey lets just move on. Perhaps the Queens Ledger needs to better understand its role as part of the local media and send a reporter out to ask Weprin what was he thinking and what was his motivation when he approved the swastika flyer. And what about asking Mr. Bearak, Chairman of the NEQJCC how his organization can foster its stated goal of multi-ethnic understanding, when as manager of the Weprin campaign he approved the hate speech flyer. Forcing people to wrestle with their conscience is too much for the Queens Ledger to ask. The Queens Ledger has had only a month to do its job, but feels it better serves the community by admonishing Bob Friedrich for seeking to hold Weprin & Bearak accountable for their vile actions.