The Fox Chase Cancer Center lost another round in their effort to expand the hospital using what is now Burholme Park land. The city had proposed to lease the park land to the Cancer Center. Neighborhood groups rallied to oppose that intrusion into the park. The courts have ruled for the neighbors.
The land was left to the city with the proviso that it be used for a park. It is that simple. Kind of if I left you some money to care for my cat and after I was gone you decided the cat did not suit your lifestyle and dumped the cat and kept the money. It’s not quite right.
Joe Menkevich has done some research on this issue and wrote the editor of the Northeast Times yesterday. I have his permission to reprint his letter.
December 17, 2009
A Lesson to John Scanlon, editor of the Northeast Times:
History the way I see it:
There is always a certain level of arrogance that come with money, power and elected Public Servants. They forget the reason why they were elected. It would seem that they think too much of their own thoughts, while the money whispers in their ear.
The reason why this decision was so important –
It upholds the Donated and Dedicated Property Act of 1913 as well as the Public Trust Doctrine.
It protects the Holmesburg Library and other property that was donated by the Public from being confiscated by government and given to private developers. (It should even protect our natural resources, which are public property from being given away to the energy development companies by Gov. Ed Rendell but a petition has not yet been filed.)
Much of the research in this case was done by Leonard Williams (deceased) and a certain unnamed co-conspitator. The information was then passed to Fred Maurer who took tremendous (and unfair) criticism in the press by the Northeast Times Editor, who did not care about our rights and was more interested in promoting Fox Chase Cancer Center’s expansion.
By not taking a position of neutrality, the N.E.Times editor John Scanlon, abused his obligation to report the news and the facts. Instead in the press he sided with FCCC, by chastising Fred Maurer and characterizing him and anyone opposed (as being “evil”).
This was a well coordinated attack, as Fred was simultaneously being hit with a SLAPP suit from Fox Chase. It was all done for maximum impact and maximum pain.
It was a case Goliath accusing Samson of being too small to count, so Fred was sued for his smallness.
Mr. Maurer did not lose his cool. In the end, he won on all counts. We all won – except for neutrality and Freedom of the Press.
The lesson to be learned here is just because projects are backed by the Wall Street Pharmaceutical Companies endless supply of money, it does not mean they are good or right.
Cancer Treatment is always well packaged and well promoted as if it was the elixir of life itself. Unfortunately even with cancer treatment people still die. They always have, they always will. Such is the nature of life.
Unfortunate too is that Cancer Treatment a business which is billed like it’s a charity; but it not a charity.
Take nothing for granted. WE must fight for our rights or lose them.
Nothing is free – least of which are the PUBLIC’S RIGHTS to accountability.
There are still other fights on the horizon. There always will be.