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Newsday letters to the editor for Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018

New York State Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo during

New York State Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo during a visit to Central Islip on Wednesday. Credit: Newsday / J. Conrad Williams Jr.

After reading that Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo will introduce legislation to remove the death penalty from New York State law, I was left with a few questions [“Cuomo: Eliminate capital punishment,” News, Aug. 3].

He stated “in solidarity with Pope Francis and in honor of my father, I will be advancing legislation to remove the death penalty — and its ugly stain in our history — from state law once and for all.” So can I assume he will change his opinion on the slaughter of innocent humans through abortion? Can I also assume he will get married and not live a sinful life with his partner?

After all, if we are talking about removing stains from our history, wouldn’t a true leader lead by example and not be a hypocrite? I can’t wait until Election Day.

Steven F. Cassidy,Franklin Square

I hope that Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s decision to advance legislation to remove the death penalty and “its ugly stain in our history” in solidarity with Pope Francis will lead him to remove the ugly stain of his support of abortion rights.

Those who were to be executed for heinous crime — the worst of the worst — had the opportunity of attorney representation and trial by a jury of their peers. Unborn children, on the other hand, are not afforded the same benefits.It’s time to reverse Roe vs. Wade and bring back justice to the truly innocent members of our society.

Victor Oliveri,Williston Park

Imagine my shock when I read that Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo wants to remove the death penalty from state law. I’m not surprised that the Vatican opposes putting criminals to death, since the taking of life is forbidden by the Fifth Commandment. What is surprising is that Cuomo sees no conflict in his position against the death penalty and his support for abortion access. Does he not know that abortion is also a death sentence?

Dolly Kalhorn,North Babylon

Obama also used executive orders

A reader wants to “Hit reset button on presidential powers” [“Letters, Aug. 7]. She wants to limit President Donald Trump’s usage of executive orders.

Really? Where was her concern when President Barack Barack Obama issued 276 executive orders, and 644 presidential memorandums, which are similar to executive orders?

Apparently, it’s OK for a liberal president to write his own legislation without the consent of Congress, but if a non-liberal president uses executive orders, that’s not acceptable.

Robert Kralick,Glen Head

An inspiring poem by Long Island priest

With his poem “Bury Me with Soldiers,” Msgr. Charles Fink captures accurately the feelings of myself and many Vietnam veterans [“LI priest’s healing words,” News, Aug. 5.]

Having served as an artillery forward observer with an infantry company, I witnessed the professionalism, bravery and fraternity of the much maligned Vietnam infantryman in dangerous and miserable conditions. Even today, self-righteous people question the motives of Vietnam veterans; however, we should agree the Vietnam soldier deserves honor and respect, for we’ll not soon see his like again.

John F. Barry, Rockville Centre

Editor’s note: The writer was a colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve.

The story about Msgr. Charles Fink, and the poem he wrote, were beautiful. As a Vietnam veteran, now 73, regardless of so many negatives of that war, I say one thing: Soldiers obey the orders of their commanders in chief regardless of the dangers involved. The men and women who fought in Vietnam were heroes. Many of the 58,000 Americans who died, many of them younger than 23, sacrificed their lives to save others. These brave Americans would have loved to read this poem. It reflects them. Msgr. Fink, you are semper fi to us.

Tony Guardino, Bay Shore

When I studied for a master’s degree in theology at the Seminary of the Immaculate Conception in Huntington in recent years, I wondered why my seminarian classmates would remark that Msgr. Charles Fink was an exceptional spiritual director. I never had him as a teacher, but in the halls he appeared to be a gentle, quiet man.

Then I read your article, and it all made sense. He is a priest who exemplifies what Pope Francis has been encouraging his priests to do, to be “shepherds living with the smell of the sheep,” to be with the people.

May all Vietnam vets be comforted and heartened by the poem “Bury Me With Soldiers.” How blessed are the people of Our Lady of Snow Church in Blue Point to have Msgr. Fink as the leader of their faith community! Thank you for such an uplifting and inspiring article.

Catherine Crimmins, Floral Park

Editor’s note: The writer coordinates bereavement ministry and is a catechist at St. Gregory the Great Church in Bellerose.