If what you read here about your tax dollars wasted and a neighborhood ruined concerns you, please consider sending a brief email to Paterson, NJ Mayor Jeffrey Jones, and Congressman Bill Pascrell:
Contact Mayor Jeffrey Jones at firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact Congressman Bill Pascrell at email@example.com or here
Dear President Obama,
Your work as a community organizer has become famous. I write to you today on behalf of needy, inner-city citizens who could use a community organizer. We are helpless in the face of a corrupt businessman who has brought noise, crime, and sex work to our residential neighborhood in a notorious urban slum – a slum that the federal government has spent millions of dollars to rescue. Can you help us defeat abuse and corruption?
I write on behalf of the residents of Artists Housing in Paterson, NJ. We are a federally funded Section 8 housing project for artists. We are productive artists, painters, writers, and singers, along with other low income residents. We live in Phoenix Mill, a two-hundred-year-old textile mill. The government put this housing project here in order to rescue Paterson from crime and urban decay. The government also declared Paterson Falls, the second highest waterfall east of the Mississippi, a National Historic Park and our neighborhood a National Historic Landmark District. We are a five minute walk from the Great Falls. The United States government has spent large sums of citizens' tax dollars here.
Phoenix Mill residents include elderly people, physically handicapped children, and families. We are majority African American and Hispanic, with some white residents as well. We are a block away from an elementary school, from the Andrew McBride senior housing residence, a Catholic church and a mosque.
We, the residents of Phoenix Mill, have been protesting against the Question Mark Bar for several years. Paterson okayed the placement of the Question Mark Bar across a very narrow, one-lane alley from our apartment windows. We feared that the Question Mark Bar would bring more crime to our residential neighborhood, and it has. Shortly after it opened, there was a shooting death in the street outside our front door. There has been increased traffic, noise until dawn, loud music, and street fights.
In April, 2013, the Question Mark Bar hung large, color placards of women's naked buttocks and breasts on its two exterior walls. These walls are on the direct route our children walk from the nearby elementary school. A man was stationed outside the bar with pink helium balloons. He was attempting to convince passersby to take the balloons and enter the bar. Passersby included decent housewives and children attempting to go about their day to day lives.
Phoenix Mill residents have repeatedly protested the placement of this bar in our residential neighborhood, a neighborhood where large sums of federal dollars have been spent in an attempt to rescue it from the crime, drug deals, and decay that the rest of Paterson has fallen prey to. Phoenix Mill residents have repeatedly contacted our mayor, Jeffrey Jones, with signed petitions against the noise, increased traffic, and street fights from the Question Mark bar. Now we confront the Question Mark Bar's in-your-face pornography and threats to become a strip bar – mere feet away from windows where little African American, Hispanic, and handicapped children attempt to sleep. Unfortunately, our local leaders here in Paterson have not helped us.