Democrats denying benefits to residents

Newsday’s article “Nassau pols spar on ethics” left out some important details [News, May 2].

It characterized former Democratic Legis. David Denenberg’s multiple felonies as “overbilling” a client, when in fact, his crimes were far more serious and cost his clients and partners more than $2 million.

The story also did not mention two other former Democratic legislators who are felons: Roger Corbin and Patrick Williams. All would be banned from public office by the proposed “no felon” law.

As for Democrats’ call for an inspector general, the law is very clear that their proposal would be an unconstitutional delegation of legislative and prosecutorial authority. Therefore, it cannot be advanced in the legislature.

Nassau Democrats have used this invalid proposal to deny funding for critical projects throughout Nassau County, including funding for our police, roads, sewers and the environment. This is a political party blatantly putting the health, safety and welfare of the people at risk by denying funding for important projects.

Norma Gonsalves, Mineola

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Editor’s note: The writer, a Republican, is the presiding officer of the Nassau County Legislature.

Goodbye to ‘free’ camping in Suffolk

I agree with “Too many fees at Suffolk County parks” [Letters, April 25]. Left unsaid was the elimination of the “free camping” for disabled veterans.

Veterans can now must pay the $10 reservation fee for a basic campsite with no amenities, such as water, electricity and sewers. At Smith Point County Park, they must also now pay the “flagship” fee, the Tier 1 park fee, and electric and sewer fees.

What used to cost a veteran $2 a night now costs $24 a night. If there’s a benefit for veterans, I fail to see it. We now pay what everyone else pays.

Peter Milach, Patchogue

Ringling Brothers failed to evolve

The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus is going dark because it refused to evolve [“Last stop for the big top,” Fanfare, May 7].

Rather than acknowledge the protests of people who didn’t want to see elephants, lions, tigers and other animals held in captivity, the circus clung to its failed business model.

Feld Entertainment, Ringling’s parent company, paid a $270,000 fine in 2011 for alleged violations of the Animal Welfare Act. The company didn’t admit it had done anything wrong.

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Ringling is paying the price for its own intransigence, but those circuses that still use animals have time to learn from Ringling’s demise. If they don’t, their days are numbered, too.

Rachel Mathews, Washington

Editor’s note: The writer is an associate director at the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals Foundation.Emotionally fragile, but not ‘disturbed’

Critic Linda Winer’s use of the phrase “emotionally disturbed” to describe a character in “Dear Evan Hansen” is inappropriate and offensive [“Nominations for the Tonys,” News, May 3].

To describe him as emotionally fragile or lacking in social confidence would be more accurate. The character doesn’t know how to get out of a situation in which someone else jumped to conclusions. This doesn’t make him disturbed. Allowing a social situation to spiral out of control does not make him disturbed. Is he inept at dealing with social situations? Yes. Is he more anxious than most teens? Yes. Does he see a therapist? Yes. Does that make him disturbed? No.

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This is a magnificent play in which actor Ben Platt captures the extreme insecurities of a teen who is more represented in our population than the writer seems to realize.

Sherry Skolnik, Bellmore

Uncertainty for theater majors at Stony Brook

Stony Brook University sent a letter to theater arts majors and minors, saying it will phase out the department because of a lack of funding [“Chairman: SBU to cut theater,” News, May 1].

The letter said no more majors and minors will be admitted, and the department will exist only to fulfill an arts requirement rather than offer a degree. While current majors and minors like me can complete their degrees, we are scared because we don’t know how this will affect us in the professional world. We need help trying to reverse this decision. The arts matter. We matter.

Amanda Hanley, Stony Brook