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Newsday letters to the editor for Tuesday, Oct. 31, 2017

President Donald Trump listens as he is introduced

President Donald Trump listens as he is introduced to speak with winners from the National Minority Enterprise Development Week Awards Program on Oct. 24, 2017, in Washington. Credit: AP / Evan Vucci

Disappointed by Trump’s putdowns

President Donald Trump reached a new low when he said in response to Sen. John McCain, “I’m being very, very nice. But at some point I fight back, and it won’t be pretty” [“Controversy on condolence,” News, Oct. 18]. McCain was accepting the Liberty Medal and criticized Trump, saying, “Some people would rather find scapegoats than solve problems.”

From a moral, ethical, logical and patriotic standpoint, this is wrong. Fighting back against a patriot is unequivocally shameful. Whether you agree or disagree with McCain, he is a patriot who fought for the United States, was a prisoner of war and permanently injured, and then came home and served the country in Congress. He’s now gravely ill but still actively working for the United States.

The president needs to remember that he serves all the people, not just the third of the population that is his base.

Michelle Interlicchio, West Babylon

Lane Filler’s column “The tiny man, the biggest job” [Opinion, Oct. 18] made a great case for calling the president the belittler-in-chief. Based on President Donald Trump’s words and actions, he might also be nicknamed the hypocrite-in-chief or the prevaricator-in-chief.

As a candidate, Trump promised to drain the swamp but surrounded himself with questionable advisers like Paul Manafort, Mike Flynn and Steve Bannon. Once elected, Trump appointed Scott Pruitt, a foe of the Environmental Protection Agency, to head that agency and selected Tom Price, who had questionable medical stock deals, to lead the Department of Health and Human Services.

Trump accused Hillary Clinton of Wall Street cronyism, but put Goldman Sachs alumni Steve Mnuchin and Gary Cohn in top positions.

In a speech at the Values Voter Summit, he praised traditional values, yet he is a former casino owner who has been married three times. A fact-checking project by the Washington Post found that Trump has made more than 1,300 false or misleading claims since his inauguration.

Take your pick. Belittler-in-chief, hypocrite-in-chief or prevaricator-in-chief. They all fit quite well.

Margaret Bell, West Islip

Wary of allowing a state ‘con-con’

Newsday’s editorial “Myths and realities of a state constitutional convention” [Oct. 15] attempts to debunk myths about the proposed convention.

One myth noted is, “Public pensions, collective bargaining and the ‘forever wild’ clause that protects the Adirondacks could be eliminated by a constitutional convention.” Newsday claims, “None of those issues are goals for convention proponents.”

However, many people are one-issue voters, and a constitutional convention would expose every item protected by it. Many people would be surprised to see what is guaranteed by the state constitution and what would be put in jeopardy.

While some people might be happy with their one-issue victories, they might not be pleased by the ramifications of the changes brought about as a result of the victories of other single-issue voters.

Another myth Newsday notes is, “A constitutional convention would be an opaque exercise in backroom deal-making . . . producing an unholy mishmash of amendments.” Newsday claims that, “Social media would guarantee that virtually nothing would be secret. And all votes would be public.” Imagine if social media played as important a role in our constitutional convention as it did in the 2016 presidential election. What could possibly go wrong?

David Nelson, Wading River