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Newsday letters to the editor for Thursday, June 28, 2018

Kim Kardashian and former prison inmate Alice Marie

Kim Kardashian and former prison inmate Alice Marie Johnson on NBC's "Today" on June 13. Credit: NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Im / Nathan Congleton

Toward better oversight of yeshivas

You wrote that proposed state legislation “to allow yeshivas to operate outside state educational standards is a non-starter” [“Albany should do its duty,” Editorial, June 14].

Newsday’s assessment missed and misstated the point. This legislation would have provided common-sense protections for schools and the state by providing for a qualified and professional accreditation intermediary, as well as a clear process for remedying deficiencies.

Surely the state Education Department alone and directly shouldn’t be assessing curricula for math, literature and civics taught in Yiddish. Saying this proposal would allow yeshivas to operate outside state educational standards is incorrect. Quite the opposite, it would make oversight more efficient, effective and comprehensive.

Michael Tobman,


Editor’s note: The writer is spokesman for the Alliance for Yeshiva Education, located in Williamsburg.

DJ Dan Ingram set the standard

A comment on the passing of Oceanside’s Dan Ingram [“Dan Ingram, pioneering DJ in rock’s early days,” News, June 26]:

From 1962-66, I was a DJ at WVBR radio at Cornell University. The studio had a permanent sign: “Don’t be Dan Ingram.”

The reason, of course, was not because Ingram was bad, but because everyone knew he was the nonpareil and wanted to imitate him, which would hardly have made for a good station, with every personality a clone of the “Ingram flingram,” as he sometimes called his show.

Some 40 years later, I sent him a letter relating this story. He kindly responded with a funny note.

Impossible not to miss someone who brightened every day.

Bruce J. Bergman,


Her drug crimes had consequences

So, Kim Kardashian and Alice Marie Johnson are advocating for nonviolent drug offenders “for the greater good” [“Pledging advocacy,” Flash!, June 15].

For whose greater good? Johnson, whose sentence was commuted by the president on June 6, was convicted of numerous felonies, distributing an estimated 2,000 to 3,000 kilos of Colombian cartel cocaine in the 1990s, making millions of dollars. How many lives were ruined because of Johnson’s nonviolent distribution and sale of cocaine?

It is common knowledge that no innocent bystanders have been shot or killed during drug dealers’ turf wars. No one has ever been beaten or robbed during drug sales. And hard core users never resort to crime to support their habits.

Yeah, Johnson may have been nonviolent, but what she peddled brought violence and death to many neighborhoods.

Chris Monzert,Lynbrook

Editor’s note: The writer was an NYPD narcotics detective.

David Koch’s denial of climate change

The retirement of industrialist David Koch from his family’s business and political activities leaves a lasting legacy of good and evil [“David Koch retiring due to poor health,” News, June 6]. His hypocrisy is staggering. He and his brother have spent millions of dollars supporting hospitals, education and cultural institutions, while also contributing more than $100 million to groups that oppose the science of climate change, according to tax research by Greenpeace.

Ninety-seven percent of the world’s climate scientists agree that climate change is caused by human activity, according to NASA, and we need to act urgently to keep the Earth’s temperature from rising. Sixteen of 17 warmest years on record have occurred since 2001. Carbon dioxide levels have risen from 320 parts per million to more than 400 parts per million since the 1950s, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

I’m certain that Koch will rely on good science and medical research for treatment of his declining health. The laws of physics, chemistry and nature are not subjective.

His Koch Industries conglomerate is the second-largest privately held company in America, worth billions.

His use of his fortune to compromise elections and responsible climate policies will be his legacy. Climate-change denial is a crime against humanity of planetary proportions.

Monica Weiss,

Kew Garden Hills

Editor’s note: The writer is a member of the advocacy groups 350NYC and the Climate Reality Project.

CEO paychecks way out of line

I don’t believe any chief executives truly deserve or merit hundreds of times what they pay their average employee [“What LI executives earn,” Business, June 17].

For example, I wouldn’t begrudge New York Community Bancorp chief executive Joseph R. Ficalora for receiving 112 times his company’s median pay if he were 112 times as smart and worked 112 times as many hours. But, obviously, he’s not, and he couldn’t!

So, to be fair, I think he should cut his own pay drastically or give all of his NYCB employees huge “Community”-minded raises.

Richard Siegelman,Plainview