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53° Good Afternoon

Letters: Councilman action's burdened Glen Cove

Recent statements by Glen Cove Councilman Anthony Gallo and his cohort, council candidate Philip Pidot, are deceptive and misleading ["Negative fiscal report puts heat on Spinello," News, Sept. 25].

Using a recent state comptroller's report, Gallo attempted to sway voters to believing that the criticism in this report is the result of Mayor Reginald Spinello's fiscal mismanagement. Yet Gallo fails to mention the role he played in the adoption of the 2014 budget, which Spinello inherited from the prior administration.

Both Spinello, then a councilman, and Gallo voted against the 2014 budget. But Gallo wavered during the lame-duck period before Mayor-elect Spinello took office and voted to add jobs to an already imperfect 2014 budget. This vote by Gallo burdened Glen Cove's taxpayers with roughly $300,000 in additional costs.

Patricia Yeomans, Glen Cove

Editor's note: The writer is a Republican committeewoman working for Spinello's re-election campaign.

U.S. mustn't duck its role in the world

I am alarmed by the large number of my fellow students who say that America should keep to itself and out of world affairs ["A push for staying longer," News, Oct. 1]. Some say that we should be completely isolationist.

At my high school, I've heard this at debate club and in my ethics class. Let's look at times when America didn't lead in the world: 6 million Jews died in Nazi concentration camps, Soviets invaded Afghanistan, Americans were taken hostage and held for more than a year in Iran, 800,000 Rwandans were killed in 100 days, and 8,000 Bosnians were killed in the bloody genocidal regime of Slobodan Milosevic. Now the Islamic State group, ISIS, has formed as a result of reduced U.S. military presence in Iraq.

Some students claim that America is too aggressive and arrogant, and that has caused more harm than good. Most of their evidence is based on the Iraq War. Though this may be somewhat true, millions have died when we haven't taken a leadership role. That's not being an arrogant American, that's the truth.

If America doesn't lead, the world will fall apart -- pretty much as it is now under President Barack Obama's "lead from behind" foreign policy.

Justin McGowan, Massapequa Park

Housing is the key at Willets Point

Everyone agrees that the Willets Point section of Queens is a disaster area in the shadow of a fairly new stadium ["Play ball at Willets Point," Editorial, Oct. 11].

But let's not equivocate; the battle lines are pretty clear. The developers want more shopping and less housing, while community advocates and politicians want more housing and less shopping.

Lower- and middle-class residents in Willets Point are not going to travel past Citi Field to shop at upscale boutiques and businesses. They are barely able to afford tickets to Mets games.

The question is, what if there aren't enough customers for those upscale boutiques and businesses? And what happens if there are not enough upscale vendors who want to populate a shopping mall next to a stadium that is closed all winter? Does it become a ghost town, or will the developers ultimately fill the retail space with moderately priced merchants?

Ideally, the developers should negotiate a fair number of housing units that satisfies the city, in return for eminent domain rights to steamroll the junkyards and auto parts stores.

Jeffrey Cohen, Flushing

Don't misunderstand pople-clerk meeting

The writer of "Disappointed that pope met Kim Davis" [Oct. 11] shouldn't feel so bad that Francis met the Kentucky clerk who refuses to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

I've seen this kindhearted pope on television speaking with convicts, shaking their hands and offering a private moment of counsel to each. It doesn't mean he endorses their behavior.

Craig T. Robertson, Huntington Station


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