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Proud Boys march in RVC, the Supreme Court and 'clean eating'

The Proud Boys march through Rockville Centre.

The Proud Boys march through Rockville Centre. Credit: Facebook/Senator Todd Kaminsky

RVC march stirs greater passions

Seeing the pictures of the Proud Boys moving en masse past the former home of South Nassau Communities Hospital’s WTC Family Center made me cringe ["Mixed views on RVC Proud Boys march," Letters, Nov. 30]. The center, where I led a program for teenagers whose fathers were killed in the Twin Towers, was a refuge for anyone who had lost a loved one on 9/11. That tragedy informed our collective empathy. But times have changed.

Observing the Proud Boys in the heart of Rockville Centre, I couldn’t help but wonder, "How could this happen here?" But in asking the question, I remember the voices of friends and family who told me they said the same thing before their respective democracies fell to dictatorship.

— Laurie Nadel, Long Beach

It seems clear from the news stories and responding letters that readers are ignorant of the facts about the Proud Boys. They are not a "hateful" or "racist" group, and their members are of all races. Their leader is not white. And what do 9/11 victims have to do with it?

The group did not exhibit any violence. Yet, the media is silent and apparently forgiving of looting, vandalism and violence by the left-wing groups, most of whom are never charged. The response from State Sen. Todd Kaminsky (D-Long Beach) was absurd. Newsday conveniently showed one point of view in lieu of reality.

— George M. Clancy, Babylon

It is significant to point out that left-leaning groups, unlike the Proud Boys, do not wear T-shirts saying "Camp Auschwitz" or other antisemitic slogans.

— Herb Leibow, Melville

Whatever happened to the First Amendment right to free assembly? You do not have to agree with them, but peaceful assembly should be encouraged in a democracy.

— Roy Sperrazza, Northport

Regarding the publicity stunt that the Proud Boys pulled off, I must say as a retired NYPD detective, the police were surely told to take no action unless absolutely warranted. What I find laughable is the photo of the Proud Boys walking and waving their flags with their faces covered. Apparently the "Proud Boys" are not so proud.

— Chris Monzert, Lynbrook

If you don’t think "woke," like one of the readers, then you’re automatically considered a neo-Nazi, right-wing extremist hate group. Did the protesters in the past two years have permits to march into residential neighborhoods under the guise of social and racial justice? Racism was never really shown as a motive in George Floyd’s murder.  

I don’t see the Proud Boys as a hate group. Not all of us want to take down statues of Robert Moses or William Floyd despite what we are told about their politics. We resent the media’s double standard and resent people who throw labels out at anyone who doesn’t buy into their narrative.

— Andrew Ross, Kings Park

A reader excuses Rockville Centre’s Proud Boys march by claiming extremism justifies or balances advocacy? Seems to me, I’ve heard that "good people on both sides" explanation before. Germany in the 1930s had both communists and fascists vying for control. How’d that work out? Philosopher George Santayana’s quote, "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it," is as prescient today as when he wrote it in 1905.

— Paul Pepe, Massapequa

High Court legitimacy was lost decades ago

Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor rightly questioned how the court could be considered legitimate if its "conservative" majority sets a new precedent by effectively overturning Roe v. Wade in a politically partisan ruling ["Abortion rights at risk," News, Dec. 2]. But the Supreme Court already lost its legitimacy in December 2000 when its partisan justices essentially selected George W. Bush as president by stopping the vote count in Florida.  

The court compounded that perception of its partisanship by its 2010 Citizens United decision, which opened the floodgates to unlimited contributions to political candidates, making the  de facto bribery of politicians legal, and giving the U.S. government the worst one money can buy.

The Supreme Court is inherently anti-democratic because its members are appointed, not elected, and they serve lifetime terms, with little possibility of removal. The so-called "conservative" justices have already shown how illegitimate the court is by their partisan decisions.

— Edward Ciaccio, Douglaston

The six conservative justices telegraphed clearly that they are prepared to, if not nullify Roe v. Wade, greatly scale it back. This will leave women without the right to exercise control over their bodies and make their own health care choices. Make no mistake, this court will be coming after birth control and same-sex marriage next.

— Marjorie Lundgren, Stony Brook

I do not know if it is ironic or just disheartening that so many people get upset over the termination of a pregnancy, based on the efforts to change the existing reproductive laws, but there seems to be less concern over the shooting and killing of children, based on the lack of effort to change the existing gun laws.

— Mark Herzog, Rockville Centre

‘Clean eating’ isn’t a helpful label

It is alarming that "clean eating" is being considered an eating disorder ["Can your diet be too clean?", exploreLI, Nov. 30]. In an overweight population that needs change, lifestyle considerations need to be addressed, even if it is taken to the clean-eating extreme.

The chance to lower the incidence of certain diseases related to weight is worth taking. AlthoughThe article, however, notes some behavior is extreme and some people have an all-or-nothing attitude ingrained within themselves.

Although socializing is connected with eating, one can also socialize without food being around. It is important to note that drinking alcohol, smoking and using drugs can be connected with social situations. Unlike these behaviors, eating will not permit one to go cold turkey. A person may need to separate from situations that cultivate thisan unhealthy eating reaction. This is also recommended for the other obsessions and needs to be considered when trying to modify one’s food intake.

Is labeling clean eating as an emotional disorder truly going to help the cause?

— Ann Hersh, Great Neck