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OpinionLetters

Making a difference in many lives

Sandra Arcarola gets a kiss from Zelda at

Sandra Arcarola gets a kiss from Zelda at the Yaphank Jail on Monday. Arcarola was among five inmates who received a certificate for their participation in a puppy training program. Credit: James Carbone

Thank you for adding some sunshine and hope to a rainy, dreary morning by publishing an article featuring the uplifting work of Deborah Whitney [“ ‘Pawsitive’ second change,” News, Feb. 11], who has created a program helping and caring about both incarcerated people and shelter dogs.

She is making a huge difference in so many lives. It’s because of people like Deborah that the USA still qualifies as a great country.

Annette Kaminsky,

Cold Spring Harbor 

Problems over Trusted Traveler

I purchased a Global Entry card for $100 that expires in five years, when I would need to buy it again [“DHS: No global entry enrollment for NYers,” News, Feb. 7]. It is supposed to be used only by U.S. citizens for expedited entry into the United States from a foreign country. Now, the federal government has stopped New Yorkers from joining or renewing the program, but it didn’t work for me, anyway:

I returned here from Spain in October, and when I arrived at U.S. Customs, I showed my Global Entry card and instead of being directed to a kiosk for expedited entry, I was told to get on a long, disorganized line of people, some of whom were not citizens and were in the wrong line. It took 50 minutes to reach an agent.

To me, the Global Entry card is nothing more than a government cash cow. It does not provide the services promised. It seems to be all hype about expedited services when returning to the United States.

Delores Plunkett,

Sayville 

So Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and New York State plan to sue the federal government over the Trusted Traveler ban [“Gov: Travel suit on way,” News, Feb. 8]. As a New York resident, I am not upset with our federal government. I am disgusted with our elected state representatives. It’s just another example of Albany putting criminals above law-abiding citizens.

The Green Light Law was ill-conceived. New York State blocking federal agencies from background information is a selfish political ploy based on sanctuary policies that endanger everyone who lives in this country.

How many decisions will our state government make that side with criminals instead of the law-abiding public? It is not just the Green Light Law. For instance, the no-bail law has eliminated bail for “lower” crimes, handcuffing our legal system from keeping dangerous criminals off the streets. Also, the proposed Senate Bill S2144 would make inmates who are 55 years old and have served at least 15 years in prison eligible for parole. The ban may be politically motivated, but at least our federal government is willing to stand against the unsafe laws implemented by Cuomo and the State Legislature.

David Gentile,

Westbury 

With respect to the federal government’s arbitrary decision to block New Yorkers from enrolling or re-enrolling in the Trusted Traveler Programs in response to the Green Light Law, it seems that this would violate the Constitution’s clear prohibition against ex post facto laws [“NYS files suit over suspended ‘Trusted Traveler’ programs,” News, Feb. 11].

When my wife and I enrolled in the program four years ago, all of our data was available and confirmed. Nothing has changed. While the legal basis for blocking new enrollments may make sense due to the unavailability of documentation, it would seem that not allowing previously verified people to re-enroll runs afoul of the ex post facto provision.

Arthur M. Shatz,

Oakland Gardens 

Worried about how best to cast ballots

Since 1952, when this 85-year-old first voted in a presidential election, I have never felt uncomfortable about casting my ballot [“Iowa results delayed; new app called ‘mess’,” News, Feb. 4]. I do now. Does anyone besides me, Republican, Democrat, or Independent, worry about the November election being hacked? Are you happy about filling in ovals with a pencil and having them read electronically? I’m not. Do you think that touch screens are the way to go and some day being able to vote from home? I don’t. Isn’t it logical that if a vote is not cast electronically it can’t be hacked? I think it is.

I am all for progress but would like to see a return to those lovely, black-curtained, non-electronic, 20th century mechanical marvels. It is not too late. If they are in storage someplace, get them out. If they are missing, let’s build new ones. There is still time. Our votes must count and we simply cannot depend on electronics.

Martin Farber,

Port Washington 

This would be a great Bloomberg buy

Former Mayor Mike Bloomberg is spending a crazy amount to garner the Democratic nomination, which he probably won’t get [“Bloomberg to double ad spending after Iowa caucus chaos,” News, Feb. 5].

Mike, stop wasting your money! Put it to good use. Buy the New York Mets or maybe the New York Knicks, or both!

 Arthur Bernstein,

Massapequa Park

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