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Newsday letters to the editor for Monday, July 9, 2018

People with invalid immigration status wait for processing

People with invalid immigration status wait for processing and possible deportation at the federal building in lower Manhattan. Credit: Getty Images / John Moore

Delaying homework will hurt students

Some scholars have concluded that there are few benefits from homework in elementary school, but that it does make a difference in middle and high school [“Is homework worth the kids’ effort?,” Opinion, July 2].

Really? So how do you prepare to introduce homework in middle school if these young minds never had homework? Don’t you start the process of learning and understanding very young? The scholars don’t necessarily advocate for doing away with homework, just making it more appealing.

So why have some elementary schools decided to end homework instead of changing it? Don’t children learn to practice music at a young age? Competition, studying, reading, sports, music, art, writing and hard work at a young age have benefits that pay off later. Making it easier for elementary-school children will only make it harder for them in middle and high school, college and the workplace. So if parents think their school helps by ending homework, think again.

Patrick Nicolosi,Elmont

Stopping first is important for safety

A letter writer stated it is not dangerous for a driver to do a slow roll while looking to the left while turning right at a red light [“Lots to say on red-light cameras,” June 27]. Tell that to any pedestrian approaching from the driver’s right.

My daughter’s elbow was fractured when a driver did just that. The writer’s point of view is just another example of the type of “everybody else get out of my way, I need to arrive at my destination as soon as possible” aggressive driving that has made Long Island roads so dangerous.

Robert Lemke,North Merrick

Simplify number for suicide hotline

Suicide has become an important topic in our current dialogue, and it should be, based on the statistics that are quoted: More than 45,000 people took their own lives in the United States in 2016 [“The riddle of suicide,” Editorial, June 9].

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline number is often printed — 800-273-8255 — but how is someone supposed to remember that? There should be a three-digit number, like 911, to connect someone with the prevention hotline immediately.

Vickie Moskowitz,


ICE performs a critical function

The new battle cry for the left has now become the abolition of Immigration and Customs Enforcement [“Trump stands by ICE,” News, July 1].

This agency is a byproduct of 9/11 and has been integral to the security of our nation. It not only deports people who are in the country illegally, but also is among agencies that confiscate illegal drugs, including fentanyl, from our streets. In 2016, we lost 64,000 people to drug overdoses nationally. On Long Island, you cannot find a person who does not know someone lost to the opioid epidemic.

I have heard many outrageous statements from both the right and the left, but shutting down ICE takes the prize. What’s next? Removing the Transportation Security Administration, and then perhaps the CIA, FBI and police?

Thomas O’Connor,N. Bellmore

All towns should tighten licensing

Kudos to Art Gipson, business agent for U.A. Plumbers Local Union No. 200, for getting changes accomplished in the licensing of plumbers in North Hempstead [“Tightening the rules,” News, June 20].

When I made an addition to my home, the plumber’s work was not of professional quality, and I told my contractor. The workers didn’t have a licensed plumber on the job, but used another man’s license to get the job done. One day, a man I’d never seen before showed up and told me he was the plumber, and that I should sign some papers for the town. I was reluctant until instructed by my contractor.

Gipson said he is working to get similar measures passed in other towns, but Islip was not one of them. Why? Hiring a licensed professional in any field will get you quality work and an option of recourse. If something goes wrong but with an unlicensed person, you’re out of luck.

James Clavin,Bay Shore

Editor’s note: The writer is a licensed welder and steamfitter.

No campaigning in a July Fourth parade

For many years we have enjoyed July Fourth parades in Patchogue. This year, a group representing Rep. Lee Zeldin’s re-election committee marched prominently with a large banner and campaign signs. I did not notice any other political campaigns in the parade.

Independence Day is a national holiday for all Americans. I do not know whether public funds were used for the parade, but there were several Suffolk County police cars in front and behind it, as well as Patchogue fire trucks and firefighters. Those vehicles and equipment are all paid for with funds from taxpayers, a significant number of whom do not support Zeldin.

There is enough division in our national community already. The Fourth of July should not be used for partisan purposes.

Bill Bernstein,Dix Hills

Editor’s note: The writer is a committeeman with the Huntington Democratic Party.