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U.S. needs a woman vice president

Protesters walk during the Women's March on Washington,

Protesters walk during the Women's March on Washington, with the U.S. Capitol in the background, on Jan. 21, 2017 in Washington, DC.  Credit: Getty Images/Mario Tama

Articles have been published recently about electing a woman president of the United States. After the Hillary Clinton debacle, more than a million women in America rallied in the famous Women’s March of Jan. 21, 2017.

Three years later, it’s virtually unlikely a woman will vie for the nomination at the Democratic National Convention. Now, my hope is that former Vice President Joe Biden or Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders will choose a woman running mate. This is not the time to wax “objective” and say gender does not matter. That’s what many women said in 2016. Gender matters here for at least two reasons.

Women have been elected as state leaders — prime minister and president — in other countries, including Indira Gandhi of India and Margaret Thatcher of Britain. Currently, the prime ministers of New Zealand and Finland are women, too. Second, if after the examples of great women in American politics we still need proof they can succeed as president, America is deluded. We need to elect a woman as vice president — now.

Shivaji Sengupta,


Cut my water rates down to size

Newsday’s article makes the water rate rise seem trivial [“American Water rates rise April 1,” News, March 6].

While almost 90% of Long Island water customers use inexpensive municipal water, we have one of the last remaining private companies. The towns and Nassau County enjoy the tax revenue it produces with no regard for the costs that residents pay. I have a small lot with little grass and no pool yet I pay almost $1,200 a year for water while nearby Massapequa pays about $400 a year.

It’s time for a public takeover to level the playing field for New York American Water customers.


Gary Colantropo,


 Civil servants work hard, thank you

Concerning Suffolk County’s lawsuit against former Suffolk District Attorney Thomas Spota, top aide Christopher McPartland and former Police Chief James Burke, these men broke the public trust and, yes, they should make restitution, as a letter writer said [“Move to sue Spota, McPartland, Burke,” March 10].

The writer, though, went on to say that civil servants are protected and abuse the system. I take umbrage with this statement. I was an employee of Suffolk County for 32 years. Civil servants work very hard in this county with many obstacles. Many people in the private sector would never work in conditions that many county employees face. One must walk a mile in their shoes before making such an uninformed statement. 

Valerie Romeo,



As a retired civil servant who passed 33 Civil Service exams during my 37-year tenure with Suffolk County, I disagree with Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone’s desire to change the exam system [“Civil Service overhaul urged,” News, Feb. 22]. Allowing localities to bypass top scorers and exempt certain applicants from testing serves no one. It merely results in a larger pool of inferior candidates. Is it really in the county’s best interests to be run by low scorers? Not to mention the lower morale of high scorers who would be supervised by someone who knows less than they do.

It’s also a bad idea to exempt college graduates from testing. That degree doesn’t mean they’re smart.

Bellone’s reasons for a more diverse workforce are merely smoke and mirrors for trying to subvert the system and hire his politically connected friends who don’t score well. I’m surprised he doesn’t propose changing exam fees for all job hopefuls. Then the county could still make money while expanding the list of candidates to include those who would’ve taken the test and failed, resulting in an even bigger pool of nincompoops for the county to choose from.

Elaine Harrison,



Church needs change over scandal’s scars

In the op-ed “Healing the scars of scandal” [Opinion, March 8], the author refers to the Catholic Church instead of its full name, the Roman Catholic Church. The heart of the crisis facing the Diocese of Rockville Centre, and all U.S. dioceses, is that all decisions causing this crisis are made in Rome.

I appreciate the commitment of the hundreds of committed Catholics who attended the Leadership Roundtable Summit in Washington, D.C., but their time is wasted until Catholics in America have the authority to make our own decisions about the important issues facing us. These include how parishes should be run and how priests are selected and trained, including whether priests should be just male and should be celibate.

Unless these issues are decided in Rockville Centre and not by all male, celibate priests in Rome, I think the future of the diocese is bleak, and I am thinking about joining the “former Catholics” the author describes. I would prefer not to leave the church I was baptized in, but it is the church that has lost faith in its people.

Bernard Kilkelly,

Point Lookout