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Letter: Teens should have spoken up about looming fight

Amy Novak-Sindoni, of Oceanside, sits with her sons

Amy Novak-Sindoni, of Oceanside, sits with her sons Luke, 4, and Matthew, 7, at the memorial for Khaseen Morris, 16, who was stabbed in the chest on Sept. 16 in the parking lot of the Brower Avenue strip mall in Oceanside. Credit: Newsday

On a typical school day, a modest gathering of students at a local pizza parlor is a common event. But Sept. 16 was not a typical day as a large number arrived at a strip mall not with an appetite for pizza, but with a hunger for spectacle. The word was out. Fight at Mario’s in Oceanside.

Upon hearing this news, it would have been prudent for a student to notify a teacher or a parent or the police. That apparently did not happen. Before things went from bad to worse, it would have been helpful for all of the students to do the moral and ethical thing and stop the fight. I believe their indifference left a young man to die in a parking lot [“Teens videoed stab death, didn’t help,” News, Sept. 18]. Requests for paper towels from a merchant and a run to a nearby firehouse were too little, too late. Instead, we have video, some of which was not immediately turned over to authorities.

In arguing that some students tried to help, Oceanside schools Superintendent Phyllis S. Harrington sounds like an apologist [“Oceanside students tried to help,” Opinion, Sept. 22]. It would be better that she serve the community as an example of public service and obligation by lamenting the behavior of the majority that chose to do nothing.

Ed Weinert,



Bring back bus service to Rte. 109

Thank you for the article “Boost for Suffolk buses” [News, Sept. 19].

I am 76 and I do not drive. I used to ride Nassau County’s n72 bus from my home near Route 109 to the Babylon train station. However, that service was eliminated in recent years in my area. Now, I must walk perhaps a half mile just to get to a bus stop for the Suffolk S25 bus to take me to the train station. I know other senior citizens who must do the same.

I am encouraged that officials are considering establishing a new bus route along Route 109 between the Babylon and Farmingdale train stations. We need a bus on Route 109 to the railroad. Please help us!

Dana Johnson,

  West Babylon


Charge a gas tax to fund energy options

Now that the youth of the world have voiced their opinion on climate change, and the United Nations convened a summit on the issue, it is time for political action.

The U.S. Congress should lead the way by legislating a carbon tax [“Call for action on climate change,” News, Sept. 21]. I propose a 10-cent tax on gasoline per gallon. No one would be exempt. Low-income people could be given some form of a tax rebate. We could use the revenue to give subsidies to renewable energy sources and to find an alternative to fossil fuel.

Surveys show Americans want action on climate change. It is time to sacrifice. Nations of the world are pouring more than 100 million tons of carbon into the air every day. What good are economic growth and a higher gross domestic product if we have an environmental catastrophe? The cost of climate change will outstrip any economic growth based on more pollution.

The United States needs to be in the forefront of environmental protection. Carbon emissions are accelerating at a faster pace, researchers say. As the British politician and historian Thomas Babington Macaulay said, “Reform, that you may preserve.”

William Lemmey,


Editor’s note: The writer, a retired history teacher, is a member of the Union of Concerned Scientists, an advocacy organization.


The headline of your Sept. 21 news story on the New York City Climate Strike, “Climate Strike draws scores to New York City,” egregiously underplayed the large attendance at this important event.

According to your own article, the event was attended by tens of thousands; and the mayor’s office estimated the attendance to have been at least 60,000.

A score means 20. The headline implied that the level of attendance was shy of a hundred. I understand that headline writers are tasked with filling a space of limited dimensions, but this doesn’t entitle them to sacrifice truth on the cruel altar of the letter-count god!

Claude LeBrun,

Roslyn Heights


More noisy copters over Mount Sinai

My family lives in what was a nice quiet town. However, in the spring, helicopter traffic that used to stay over Long Island Sound has begun flying directly over our homes in Mount Sinai. Of course, other East End communities have had trouble, too [“Riverhead: Q&A sought with helicopter council,” News, Sept. 23].

As I sit by my window every day from about 3 to 6 p.m., helicopter after helicopter flies overhead, low to the ground and making substantial noise. The racket and vibration make me very nervous. Traffic is higher on the weekends.

There seems to be a change in the flying pattern for westbound helicopters leaving the Hamptons for New York City. This is ruining our quality of life and has got to stop. Is anyone listening?

Jerome Packer,

Mount Sinai