Letters to the Editor: September 1, 2011


No better deal for dive motels?

Almost $100 a day for a room in a two-bit motel, which comes to about $700 a week and $36,000 a year, and yet not one of our so-called representatives, from County Executive Steve Levy on down, even questions this waste of our tax dollars! For this waste of our money a family could stay in a nice hotel instead of the Wading River Motel, with all of its alleged violations. With all this waste, is it any wonder our taxes are double the rate of the rest of the country? Is it any wonder why so many young people and senior citizens are leaving Long Island? Once the middle class is gone, who will be left to pay these sky-high taxes? The only people who will be left are the poor and the rich?
Do our politicians even care? From what I’m seeing, apparently not!

Thomas W. Smith


Our flag deserves the utmost respect

With September approaching, we are reminded to put out our flags in honor of 9/11, but there is nary a word about displaying them properly. Unfortunately, more and more people appear to be ignorantly patriotic these days. Once upon a time we needed to show Old Glory the respect it deserved. We were taught our flag should never fly at night without being properly lit nor should it be left flying out in inclement weather. Have the rules changed?
I spot flags all over my hometown, flapping in all kinds of weather as well as in the dark.  Local merchants are the worst offenders. The local car wash has numerous flags perched along its rooftop beam, and gas stations abound with so many flags that motorists must take care not to run them over. The same is true for many of our delis. Some proprietors are American; some are not. But shouldn’t they all know better?
Many of us now “plant” miniature flags in flower pots and leave them outside in all kinds of weather. More and more, tiny flags are being spotted planted along our roadsides. Even the televised flashes in the wake of Irene revealed many flags, in various stages of neglect, flying in teeming rain and/or in the dark.
My wish is that when we display the flag, we display a little respect along with it.

Margaret Schwarz


Not fit for public office

Greg Fischer, a perennial political candidate, appears on the Sept. 13 Democratic primary ballot for the position of Riverhead supervisor. We strongly urge Democratic voters to reject Mr. Fischer, as town and county screening committees and primary voters have done in the past.
Over many years, Mr. Fischer has conducted himself in a deeply disturbing manner.
His many Internet writings have an anti-woman quality. He refused to tell a screening committee his position on issues until all committee members signed “non-disclosure agreements.” He was charged with stealing a political opponent’s campaign signs. He has been the subject of protective orders by courts. He has had criminal charges pending since 2009 for obstructing governmental administration, resisting arrest and failing to obey a police officer.
Also troubling are his cavalier statements that his arrest involved merely a domestic dispute with a woman. All domestic disputes must be taken seriously; police put their lives on the line when responding to them.
Mr. Fischer should not be running for supervisor, not only because of his actions and pending criminal charges but also because he has trivialized those charges for so long.
His actions and statements should disqualify him from public office.

Jean Hudson
Vasso Patrikis
Thelma White

Riverhead Democratic Committee members


Rights need exercise

Sept. 13 is another day we can exercise one of our inalienable rights.
Although to some it is merely a primary election, it’s still a day we can use the most valuable tool we have: our vote.
America’s founding generation was unique in stating all mankind has a right to pursue happiness, to bear the fruits of their labors and those rights cannot be assigned or revoked by anyone, they are in fact, inalienable.
They also said governments may be instated among men to secure these rights, but only by the consent of the governed.
That founding generation was composed of men who were not politicians, but concerned citizens who braved criticism from their neighbors. They assembled in what might be called our first governing body, the Constitutional Convention.
They thought it so unique that when they submitted the Declaration, even before ratification, they called for joyous celebrations and illuminations.
What was true in 1774 remains true today. We are a people culturally rooted in fierce individualism and a strong desire to earn our own station in life.
While those who now govern us have become politicians, and some of us are still criticized, we all still need to exercise our inalienable right.
I urge everyone to vote. We need to exercise our rights to maintain one nation, by the people, for the people, of the people.
Be brave, vote, then celebrate. It’s your inalienable right.

Joel Reitman