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Freedom means taking reponsibilty, too

People seen wearing masks in Hampton Bays on

People seen wearing masks in Hampton Bays on Nov. 23, 2020. Credit: James Carbone

A great deal of discussion is going on about one’s right not to wear a mask. I hear, "This is America and I have the freedom to make my choice, and no one can tell me what to do." We also live by another principle: "Accepting the consequences of your actions." If someone decides not to wear a mask and infects others, should that person be held accountable for his or her decision? Should the person be responsible to reimburse the infected person for lost wages when he or she cannot go to work, or for medical expenses not covered by insurance, or pay a death benefit to the surviving family? If you are bold enough to make your decision, are you also bold enough to accept the consequences? Yes, you can make your own decisions, but they do affect other people.

Bob Ranieri,

St. James

Redeeming cans often can be a sad scene

When redeeming cans or bottles, I never carry bags filled with broken, dented, filthy, glass and plastic bottles and cans. Working in local supermarkets, I see some people, usually the same ones, redeeming these items daily. I’ve read they are supposed to be limited to 240 cans and bottles per day, but they well exceed that limit, which most stores apparently don’t enforce. I realize it’s a way of life for some, going through garbage cans and fishing for every nickel item. Aside from some people stuffing odd brands and crushed items into the machines, often jamming them, I am disgusted to see people putting their mouths on a deflated bottle fished out of a garbage can, trying to blow it up so they can redeem it. The beer and soda that are left in shopping carts and in the machines which attract flies and wasps are bad enough. While I feel sorry people need this money to apparently survive, I find many get hostile and won’t stop stuffing the machines for a few seconds to allow me to cash in a handful of items. There’s got to be a better way.

Mark Lane,

Little Neck

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