Newsday's social media team is experimenting with a new feature in which we will highlight user comments that are particulary well-written and well-thought-out. Point of view, political or otherwise, is not taken into consideration. What will catch our eye is effort and reason. Below are three comments we are highlighting today from recent stories. The comments below have been edited for grammar and clarity.
1) Playing football in the cold
Commenter 1LongIslander expressed a view on high school athletes playing football in icy and wet conditions after reading “Athletes' hypothermia: Eyeing guidelines.”
Common sense has to come into play. Once these football players become wet from the rain, snow and or mud, the amount of heat the body loses increases drastically. Anyone who has basic knowledge about keeping warm knows the secret to keeping warm is staying dry and if you are wet, you need to get dry. If it had just been windy and cold, these players would never have become hypothermic, but once they became wet any chance of staying warm was long gone. You can't determine if it is too cold to play football or any other sport if you you only consider the temperature and the wind speed. You also need to consider if it is raining and if the fields are muddy. The game between Plainview-Old Bethpage and Valley Stream should have been canceled way before you had 15 or more players suffering from hypothermia. Plus, when the fields are retaining water they are no longer safe to play on. High school students don't need to have major knee injuries because of poor field conditions.
2) Parent-teacher group to back gay students
Commenter epac presented a well-thought-out view on the parent-teacher organization forming on Long Island to support gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender students after reading “Parent-teacher group to back gay students.”
It's amazing how many posters here are completely missing the point of what's happening. This isn't an action, it's a reaction, i.e. - if GLBT teens were treated the same as everyone else, none of this would exist. Unfortunately, there are many bigoted and idiotic teens (raised by bigoted and idiotic parents) who think it's ok to bully, harass and beat up these kids at school up on a daily basis. That's why this organization is necessary. I'm surprised it took this long. Are they supposed to just take the abuse? Ridiculous. I'm glad they're doing something.
3) County Executive Edward Mangano's $2.63 billion budget for 2012
The truth is that there is no magic bullet that is going to make everyone happy. The current union contracts with the benefits and pension package simply can not be sustained, I think that we are in agreement with that. So what do we do? Raise everyone's taxes to compensate with a promise to do the same every year so the contracts stay in tact? Do we lay off a percentage of workers to reduce the payroll? That doesn't make sense. The only thing that makes sense is for the unions to take the cuts and tighten their belts and adjust their lifestyle so their union brothers and sisters can keep their jobs and the County can afford to pay them. The unions act as though the economy is going to magically rebound and the money will flow in to pay for benefits and pensions, so there is no need for concessions. I think it's safe to say this isn't gonna happen this year and next year doesn't look good either. And if I were a betting man I would bet that things are gonna get worse before they get better. The whole world is in a lousy situation and it's because of greed, so the only way out of this is to work together and stop fighting.