No harm in telling a player to focus

In response to “It’s just a ballgame. Let kids be kids” [Expressway, July 16], I’m a proud Little League mom who takes great offense to this reader essay.

The writer, Chris Giovinco, was critical of parents who coach the players from the sidelines. My expectation is that my 11-year-old son have fun, play with his heart and give 100 percent. He’s part of a team, so, yes, he must pay attention. I often redirect my son to get his head into the game when he daydreams in the field. Also, once the ball is hit, it only takes a second for that ball to clock you in the face.

A little competition in a friendly game of baseball is healthy. It creates a passion in the kids to strive to do their best.

There’s nothing wrong with a parent who wants a child to succeed and to always give his or her best effort.

Michelle Barretta, East Meadow

Fix health care with a bipartisan spirit

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Cutting people’s health insurance and Medicaid is not a viable health care bill [“Senate rejects ‘skinny’ bill,” News, July 28]. It is a deathcare bill and a they-don’t-care bill.

Poor and middle-class people of America need Congress to improve Obamacare in a positive spirit of bipartisanship, and not abolish it in a negative spirit so prevalent in this era. Americans deserve nothing less than universal health care.

The Rev. Arthur L. Mackey Jr., Roosevelt

Editor’s note: The writer is a senior pastor at the Mount Sinai Baptist Church Cathedral in Roosevelt.

Too late now to stop ride-hailing in Suffolk

Suffolk County lawmakers are considering a six-month moratorium on ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft. While this bill is on hold in a legislative committee, it still presents a danger to Suffolk County residents [“Suffolk on track for Lyft, Uber operations next week,” News, June 21].

The state law legalizing ride-hailing went into effect on June 29 without the Suffolk County Legislature opting out. Since then, drivers and customers have been conducting legitimate business. Suffolk now faces the unhappy choice of taking away jobs and a popular service from residents.

Throughout the ride-sharing debate, supporters and detractors made many claims speculating about what might happen. Now, we’ve seen ride-hailing in action. The service is popular among drivers and consumers.

Enacting a moratorium before June 29 would have avoided harming drivers and customers who depend on the service. But that time has passed. Temporarily suspending this industry would certainly harm; Suffolk County legislators must oppose this moratorium.

Vincent Rasulo Brookhaven

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Editor’s note: The writer is a member of the Suffolk legislature’s Next Generation Advisory Council, a volunteer position, but said the view expressed here is his own.

No one’s accountable for MTA failures

Despite the political blame game, the Long Island Rail Road’s “summer of hell” is the result of decades of negligence at every level of government. Blame lies with Democrats and Republicans. The situation is truly a bipartisan issue and reflects the values of a complacent constituency that is more preoccupied with the latest celebrity gossip.

For years, our elected officials have done little to invest in crumbling infrastructure while awarding lucrative and extravagant pay, benefit and pension packages to union and non-union employees with too little accountability for performance.

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s fares have accelerated faster than the rate of inflation while service deteriorates. Vital projects are delayed, over budget and behind schedule. We only need to look at East Side Access, which was slated for completion in 2009 at a cost of $4.3 billion [“Tracking lost time,” News, July 25]. The current estimate is more than $10.2 billion with a completion date of late 2022. Where is the leadership? Who lost a job over this? Was pay clawed back?

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What’s worse is that, after this summer, we will have scratched only the surface.

Andrea Preusse, Greenlawn