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Freedom, the Coliseum, Gabby Petito case and more

Nassau Coliseum, where the Islanders played, remains closed.

Nassau Coliseum, where the Islanders played, remains closed. Credit: Newsday/Thomas A. Ferrara

Danger of freedom without responsibility

There are many people who need to revisit the phrase: "Freedom is not free." Because there is an appalling lack of personal responsibility in this country ["Hochul: Deadline firm for vaccine mandate," News, Sept. 23].

When I was a boy, my dad taught me all about personal responsibility. He told me I was not only responsible for myself in my decisions, but also that my choices have ramifications that could positively or negatively impact the lives of others.

This seems to be lost on much of the population today and is woefully lacking in many of our feckless "leaders" in Congress. This does not only relate to COVID-19 policies and mask debates, but also issues like climate change, gun safety and the proliferation of dishonesty in our government and some of the media.

Our freedom is a right we should all cherish, and I do. But freedom without responsibility often leads to anarchy.

— Jerry Giammatteo, Sayville

Just let Levy go off into the sunset

Former Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy is just that — "former." Yet Newsday filed a Freedom of Information Law request to pry into an agreement he made when he walked away from his position and relinquished his campaign monies, which was to be "under seal" and "confidential" and "privileged" ["Levy: D.A. deal confidential," News, Sept. 23].

Obviously, his arm was twisted or he was threatened so he wouldn’t run for reelection and would just walk away. Why humiliate the man further when he’s no longer in office and gave up so much?

Where is the oversight when it comes to irrelevant matters? Why not let this former government official go off into the sunset with his secrets intact. Doesn’t he deserve that after "giving in" and not running for office in Suffolk County?

— Barbara Gilman, Old Bethpage

Little certain about Coliseum’s future

The column "Excitement finds new home: Belmont" [Opinion, Sept. 22] laments the fact that Nassau Coliseum remains closed. What the essay fails to note is that amid a pandemic that shut down many venues, Nassau Live Center funded almost $7.6 million to pay for operating losses incurred this past year. We absorbed these losses knowing that this historic structure needs to be creatively reinvented if it is to complement Belmont’s new role.

The columnist seeks "certainty" in defining the future of the Coliseum. That would require knowing the future of the next COVID-19 variant, the investment required to address long-neglected Coliseum amenities, and the approval process required to implement our strategic vision.

The only "certainty" is that Nassau Live will repurpose the Coliseum in a manner consistent with our pledge to ensure that it fulfills its potential as a vital, exciting and strong economic and entertainment destination for the people of Nassau County.

— Nicholas A. Mastroianni II, New York

The writer is manager of Nassau Live Center.

Laundrie’s parents should have acted

This tragic loss of a beautiful young woman is made even worse by the behavior of others ["Warrant of arrest issued," News, Sept. 24]. If Brian Laundrie’s parents loved Gabby Petito as much as they said they did, then why didn’t they text her parents when Laundrie showed up at home alone?

All they had to say was that Laundrie came home without Petito and isn’t talking to us — you may want to try to find her. That van was registered to Petito, and Laundrie shows up in the van without her? Why wasn’t that enough for the police to act? Why couldn’t they arrest him for stolen property?

My deepest sympathies to Petito’s family. Their lives are forever changed.

— Joan Lazaunik, Great Neck

I feel the Utah police have blood on their hands for not arresting Brian Laundrie. They witnessed firsthand Gabby Petito’s mental state. You cannot tell me that the police were unaware of underlying bad drama going on. This would not have happened if it took place in New York.

— Chris Viola-Weiss, Oceanside

After the flood, drastic action needed

After Hurricane Ida flooded this area with a record rainfall, we can expect severe storms to continue due to climate change. Besides preparing for these events with considerable expense, we must also prevent climate change from worsening. The UN secretary general announced we are at the climate "tipping point" much sooner than predicted, and drastic action must be taken to avoid future catastrophe ["UN chief: ‘The world must wake up,’ " News, Sept. 22].

Congress is finalizing a reconciliation bill that includes actions to combat climate change. These include reducing carbon emissions by 50% and requiring the U.S. power grid to be 80% emissions-free by 2030. This bill is our last chance to make a real difference and contain climate change before it is too late. We must not miss this window of opportunity to save the planet for ourselves and future generations.

— John Day, Bellrose