Regarding "Fatal turn to heroin" [News, Jan. 26], free in-home drug-test kits are available to parents through the Suffolk County sheriff's Test, Don't Guess program. Parents can obtain them at locations including the Huntington, Babylon and Brookhaven youth bureaus, as well as from county legislators.
These kits are not just another tool to help prevent, discover and even stop drug abuse, but can indicate whether professional help might be needed.
Phil Enright, Medford
Story compromised police investigation
The Coalition of Suffolk Police Unions condemns Newsday's decision to publish "Sources: Suffolk robber may have used body shop vehicles to flee holdup" [News, Jan. 14]. The article contained specific investigative details that not only compromised an ongoing investigation, but more important, put Suffolk families and police officers at risk.
By disclosing facts about Suffolk County Police operational tactics and strategies that were specific to this investigation, and could have alerted the suspect that he had been identified and lived "in Medford," Newsday could have compromised the success of the investigation, aided the suspect in avoiding apprehension and carelessly put at risk both the safety of the police investigators and the Suffolk families we work so hard to protect.
The article revealed confidential and specific details from "intelligence documents" that were critical to the success of this investigation -- details neither the reporter nor Newsday was entitled to.
We urge Newsday to re-evaluate its criteria for printing improperly obtained, sensitive information that compromises safety. We are aware of the importance and obligation of news outlets to report news to the public. However, journalistic integrity requires responsible reporting of news that does not come at the cost of public safety or the ability of the authorities to protect the public and prosecute criminals.
Noel DiGerolamo, Bohemia
Editor's note: The writer is the president of the Suffolk County Police Benevolent Association, a police officers union.
Preserve ship and maritime history
Kudos to Newsday for the update on the SS United States ["A ship in peril," News, Jan. 26].
I grew up around ships, as most of my family worked in the maritime industry here and in Norway, going back more than 150 years. As a boy, I had the thrill of seeing the SS United States pass under the Verrazano Bridge. My wife, on a sixth-grade class trip, got to board the ship while it was docked in New York.
The ship's conservancy group should consider a Queen Mary-type attraction, like the one in Long Beach, Calif. The ship's two massive cargo holds could be made into multilevel casinos. The ship should then be moored next to the USS Intrepid.
Together, they could be a source of considerable revenue to the city and state, and preserve a great merchant ship, as well as a piece of maritime history.
Lloyd E. Simonsen, Ronkonkoma
Don't issue licenses to people here illegally
The writer of "Immigrant licenses would make all safer" [Letters, Jan. 26] overlooks several important points.
A driver's license is a privilege, not a right. A driver's license is accepted as proof of identity and proof that the driver has a legal right to be in this country.
Immigrants who are in this country illegally do not have a right to be in this country. They are not immigrants. They are trespassers at best, invaders at worst.
Our immigration system is not broken; it is being ignored. This is the equivalent of telling legal immigrants that they are stupid for obeying the law and waiting to come here legally.
Judith Durah, Spring Creek
Moral obligation to LI's animals
One of the letter writers in "How to tame LI wildlife?" [Jan. 26] states that he is "tired of people who feel that animals are more important than people."
This comment misses the point. Responsible people are not stating that animals are more important than people, but rather that when people have developed and populated an area to the extent that their interests conflict with those of other species, we have a moral obligation to come up with a more responsible solution than killing off the other species.
Frank Mazze, Farmingville
Estate tax isn't tax on the 'dead'
I was surprised to see that in your editorial of Jan. 26 that you referred to the estate tax as a tax on the "dead" ["Cuomo's cuts, checks and carrots"].
The dead cannot be taxed. They own no material possessions. The estate tax falls on their heirs, who have done absolutely nothing to earn their legacy.
Richard G. Shelp Jr., Bridgehampton