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Newsday letters to the editor for Friday, Feb. 16, 2018

Prototypes of border walls in San Diego, photographed

Prototypes of border walls in San Diego, photographed Oct. 26, 2017. Credit: AP / Elliott Spagat

Let me get this straight: President Donald Trump is demanding that U.S. taxpayers pony up $23 billion for a useless border wall and security enforcement in the middle of nowhere [“Budget swells deficits,” News, Feb. 13].

Yet he is reneging on the federal government’s promise to pay for half of $30 billion for a much-needed rail tunnel under the Hudson River.

This tunnel would be used by thousands of commuters every day and is vital to ensure the health of the nation’s economy.

Well, since Mexico is not paying for the wall, as Trump promised, perhaps it might chip in to help us build the tunnel.

Edmund Fountaine, Oakdale

With bag law, will stores cut prices?

I fail to see how charging Suffolk County residents a nickel for a plastic or paper bag is going to stop plastic bags from being a problem [“Buy a folding bag for your purse or pocket,” Letters, Feb. 8]. If the intent is to stop these bags from hurting the environment, then ban them. Let’s return to paper bags only.

Supermarkets are the ones that stopped using paper bags, or, in my experience, discouraged their use by hiding them from view. They were stronger than plastic and fit more products. I used to ask for paper bags, but often the clerk would say none were available.

We can assume that supermarkets increased prices to make up for the cost of plastic or paper bags. How long do you think we will have to wait for them to reduce prices now that we are paying for the bags?

Bob Southard, South Setauket

Exceptional because there was no wall

The person who wrote the Feb. 11 letter “The wall will preserve U.S. exceptionalism” must realize that America’s exceptionalism happened without a wall. It happened in no small part because of the welcome provided by the Statue of Liberty.

Think of all the first and second generations of scientists, mathematicians, artisans, entrepreneurs, soldiers, sailors and others who contributed to American exceptionalism. Yes, we are great and exceptional because there is no wall.

Richard Beckman, Merrick