I’d like to thank Tedra Grant for sharing her story, “A family’s wounds from racism” [Opinion, June 29], about living on Long Island, which brought me to tears. Sadly, her story can be told millions of times over by Black families in America. Recent horrific events of systemic racism have awakened millions to this injustice and brought thousands of young and diverse protesters into the streets around our country to demand changes in our society to end this evil.
It’s time for all of us to let our voices be heard on this issue. I’m a (white) senior citizen and during my life have heard racist remarks spoken and to my regret remained just a silent observer. For that I want to apologize to Tedra and all African Americans because I believe silence is tantamount to being complicit. We should not let racist acts go unchallenged, whether in our homes, with friends or neighbors, or in the workplace. If you believe in the American dream, then you believe despite our diversity we are all brothers and sisters and should treat each other accordingly.
When you see racism let them know it’s wrong, it’s not American. And by the way, Tedra, your family picture is beautiful.
I am horrified, disgusted and sick to my stomach after reading Tedra Grant’s story. Even worse, that it perpetuates through her children.
I remember when the first neighbor on our block sold his home to a Black family in the ’80s. The neighbors reacted as if he sold military secrets to the Russians. I am proud to say that I am back living in my parents’ house, which is now mine, and my block is racially and culturally diverse. My children are grown with their own families. We are now also a multiracial and multicultural family as well.
I love my family and neighbors, and I love the diversity. Judge me for who I am. Not my color, religion, or political affiliation.
I was especially moved by Tedra Grant’s op-ed on her family’s ordeals with racism and home ownership in Freeport.
I, too, found myself revisiting experiences with racism that I and many of my friends and classmates endured, coming of age in Uniondale in the 1980s and 1990s. During my childhood, as more African American, Latinx and Caribbean families moved in, many white families began to panic that “city people” (code term for Black) were going to corrupt their school district.
These same parents were quick to either sell their homes or spirit their children to much whiter private schools. But the truth is that during our time in this district we knew many passionate, enthusiastic educators who inspired us, and who believed in us. We had access to a plethora of programs such as Advanced Placement, a college-level science research program, and of course our award-winning music program.
My class was accepted into six out of the eight Ivies, several HBCUs, and major research universities. Our graduating class included medical doctors, nurses, college professors (including myself), teachers, ministers, musicians and armed service members.
It is a shame the panicky parents could not see our beauty or the diversity in our class.
The downside of legalizing marijuana
A letter states that removing tobacco products will save some of the 480,000 lives that die of tobacco-related disease every year [“Ban the sale of tobacco products,” Just Sayin’, June 20].
But what about marijuana smoking, which also will take lives and expose others to secondhand smoke? It also will raise health care costs, where premiums already will be going up nearly 17%. Medical marijuana can be beneficial, but I believe it shouldn’t be smoked. I think legalizing it is ridiculous because all the government wants to do is cash in on the tax money from people’s bad habits.
Officers’ families know sacrifices made
Our voices are rarely heard, if at all. We are the voices of law enforcement families. These officers can be husbands, wives, sisters, brothers or children.
Every day, we witness these heroic figures put on a vest that not only protects themselves but the public as well. They do this every day not knowing what dangers await them. They have jobs that often sacrifice family life. This is why we get annoyed when we see people spit, throw bricks and fire-bomb them.
Officers continue to do their jobs, often arresting the same criminals over and over only to see them set free by judges. One criminal had more than 100 arrests. To me, it is a shame the governor and mayor do not back them. I know who does back them: the silent voices who witness the work of these fine people.