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OpinionLetters

Newsday letters to the editor for Tuesday, Aug. 15, 2017

Newsday readers respond to topics covered.

A student prepares to start a Common Core

A student prepares to start a Common Core mathematics test in Rockville Centre on April 24, 2015. Photo Credit: Newsday / J. Conrad Williams Jr.

Trace pain and suffering to Trump

President Donald Trump showed his true colors. In Saturday’s response to violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, he said we must stop the bigotry “on many sides” [“President condemns rally violence, blames ‘many sides,’ ” News, Aug. 13].

Did Trump miss the video of white supremacists giving “Heil Hitler” salutes during the presidential campaign?

I saw only one side in the wrong in Charlottesville. TV news showed an individual using an aerosol can with a flame coming out trying to burn a Confederate flag. But there were many gun-toting white supremacists present.

Pain and suffering from the deaths of two Virginia state troopers and one counterdemonstrator, and injuries suffered by many others, can be traced directly to the White House. Trump had given the green light to right-wing fanatics to come into the streets of our cities.

Gene Reynolds, Ridge

There are affordable ways to enclose pools

Huntington Town officials are looking into fence regulations concerning pools, based on homeowner complaints about the costs associated with installing fences [“Review of pool fence regulations,” News, Aug. 14].

While it might seem silly to some for a homeowner to install a fence adjacent to a neighbor’s existing fence, as with most things, the answer is not so simple. Where will the liability be if a neighbor’s fence is damaged or in disrepair? Who’s responsible if a child gets into your pool because of this?

As far as I know, the town is discussing this with no input from trade associations, pool safety groups or manufacturers of pool fences. There are affordable options for enclosing pools.

Dennis Pekoff,Wantagh

Editor’s note: The writer is a past president of the New York/Long Island Fence Association.

Red-light cameras need more study

I’m sure that the annual reports from Nassau and Suffolk counties on their red-light cameras don’t show everything [“Report card on cameras,” News, Aug. 1].

For example, when Nassau and Suffolk officials say the revenue drop and reduction in accidents show that drivers have “become more aware of the cameras and are driving more carefully,” they don’t say that many drivers simply circumvent red-light camera intersections by taking alternate routes.

When the director of Suffolk’s Traffic and Parking Violations Agency says that the red-light camera program is a safety program and, “Any revenue generated is ancillary to a safety program,” you can be pretty sure that the revenue is a pretty close second to safety.

The article also states that the total of injury accidents at Suffolk camera locations fell by 5 percent, but the number of rear-end collisions increased by 30 percent. What the county won’t tell you is that it profits from rear-end collisions when it collects sales tax revenues from the repairs of the vehicles after the accidents!

Suffolk Legis. Kevin McCaffrey is right to ask that the county’s program be studied, and it should be done in a thorough, transparent and objective manner. Provide the public with all the facts, pro and con.

Herbert Kraut,Woodmere

Teach students how to work with others

We read many articles about testing students in Common Core and the STEM curriculum — science, technology, engineering and math. We read about test scores and whether questions are fair [“Tests deprive kids of quality instruction,” Letters, Aug. 10].

Unfortunately, we don’t hear much about soft skills. These are skills required to interact and work with people in any type of job or work environment. They are skills businesses look for in interns, applicants and employees.

I’ve spent 20 years speaking about these skills to students from middle school to graduate school. Feedback from a majority in all grades shows that they understand how important soft skills are, and they want to learn them. The skills include making a good first impression, communicating and selling.

Perhaps schools should incorporate these essential skills into their curricula. Every student can learn and apply these skills throughout life. Soft skills complement what students learn in school.

Bob Wolf,Rockville Centre

Editor’s note: The writer is a career skills and college readiness trainer.

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