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Letter: Reducing waste is part of solution

In response to Newsday's editorial, "Trash trouble is piling up" [July 3], we have only ourselves to blame.

Going to the grocery store, or any store for that matter, take a look at how an item is packaged. That packaging is what you will be throwing out. Companies still make Styrofoam cups, plates and bowls. That stuff never decomposes.

With summer festivities under way, and the summer parties, will consumers be purchasing throwaway cups, plates and utensils? Yes, they will.

We cannot totally blame government for this crisis, but we also must look to be our own problem solvers. That is the responsible thing to do.

Mary MacElveen, Sound Beach

Plastic surgeon is paid in cash?

Rafael Astacio, a former detective for the New York City Police Department, has admitted guilt to burglary ["Ex-detective admits to role in burglaries," News, June 27]. The legal system will carry on from here.

What dumbfounded me was the theft of $2 million in cash from the office of a Woodbury plastic surgeon. Really? With credit cards and wire transfers, do enough patients pay in cash that it is wise or necessary to have this much kept in an office?

Is it a judgment on society that, for plastic surgery's endowment and enhancement, there can be no paper trail of treatment? Or is something else happening? I have no knowledge of this doctor's clientele or practice, so this is pure conjecture. But I find it fascinating. Should we hope the IRS reads Newsday?

Judith Upright, Locust Valley

LIRR demands don't acknowledge slump

I'm a longtime Long Island Rail Road commuter, and although it would greatly inconvenience me, I hope the LIRR unions strike ["Talking again," News, July 3]. And I hope they lose tons of wages during the strike. And I hope that our governor and his cohorts don't strong-arm the Metropolitan Transportation Authority management into giving in to the unions' blackmail.

I'm sick of the sheer greed. In an economy where so many people are out of work or have endured lengthy stretches of unemployment, where wages have stagnated, and where private-sector pensions have become virtually nonexistent, these union leaders are not satisfied.

But then again, why should they be? With politicians lining up behind them for valued photo-ops, and the strength of two rulings from presidential boards that defy common sense, but are rather the manifestation of the Obama administration's wealth redistribution agenda, why should they yield even an inch?

In recent months, unions throughout the area have accepted offers that varied in degrees of richness but recognized today's economic realities: Long Island's municipal unions, New York City teachers, and even the MTA's subway unions. Only the LIRR's workers -- the ones coming off a scandal involving fat retirement pensions and fraudulently secured disability pensions -- feel they should be able to hold up the hardworking citizens of the region.

Corey Multer, Merrick

Correct to pay county administration fees

Regarding Newsday's editorial concerning the debate over returning ticket fees after vehicle repairs, you got it right this time ["Have a heart for struggling motorists," Letters, June 27].

The fact is, people are guilty of these infractions, and as such, they should at least pay the administrative cost of processing the ticket. A little personal responsibility is in order. If people weren't guilty, chances are they wouldn't have gotten the ticket in the first place.

Last year, I got a ticket for an expired inspection. Guess what? It was expired. Guilty!

Joseph N. Kennedy, Syosset

Rough roads need urgent repair

Do the local and state road authorities think all the potholes and ridiculously rough roads and highways will miraculously mend themselves?

I drive throughout Queens and Nassau counties, and the roads are downright dangerous because they lack proper maintenance. Where are the road crews filling holes and smoothing rough patches?

Come on, we need your help! Our cars -- as well as our nerves -- are taking a beating.

Bruce Hanson, Queens Village

County park wall in poor shape

I went to pay my respects to my grandfather at Blydenburgh County Park in Smithtown, where his name is displayed on a wall in the parking lot.

When I approached, the wall looked as though it hasn't been taken care of in years. It's falling apart, and the name plates are cracking.

That is a disgrace, and I am disappointed because this is supposed to honor men and women we lost and loved.

Thomas C. Stanford II, Hauppauge