Sharpton and Rangel on the Racial Politics of Waste

Al Sharpton is going Michael Bloomberg one better in a fight over garbage facility siting here at the OEM building in Brooklyn, where the mayor is urging state lawmakers to approve a citywide garbage plan that includes using a state park in Manhattan as one of the trash-processing locations.

“The mayor has said this is a city issue — to me, it’s also a civil rights issue,” said Sharpton. “It seems to me ironic, if not pathetic,” he continued, that some liberal lawmakers are opposing the plan.

Representative Charlie Rangel, who spoke immediately after Sharpton, added, “To get caught up in the politics of the day, the children really deserve better.” Rangel also said somewhat pointedly that the “other side” — lower Manhattan lawmakers including Assembly members Deborah Glick, Richard Gottfried and Linda Rosenthal — isn’t willing to share the real reason for their opposition publicly.