I could not agree more with the ideas espoused in Lane Filler’s column “The choice Democrats must make” [Opinion, April 24].
Given some of the highly questionable conduct by President Donald Trump, it is not surprising that Democrats are frustrated. Special counsel Robert Mueller did not uncover a smoking gun, or in Watergate terms, incriminating tapes. In addition, he was constrained by the Justice Department guideline that a sitting president cannot be indicted.
Dealing with myriad serious national problems is clearly a far better use of Democrats’ energy than relitigating the Russia investigation. Besides, there is another way to impeach Trump, and that’s called an election.
Arthur M. Shatz,
Concern about plan for group home
With the approval of the New York State Office for People with Developmental Disabilities, an organization called Family Residences and Essential Enterprises intends to establish a group home for four adults on my street in Commack [“Group home planned for Coconut Drive,” News, April 12]. The home’s backyard borders Commack High School, and our neighborhood has many families with young children.
A letter sent to residents by the Town of Smithtown says the state agency is primarily concerned with the “concentration” of such homes in an area and found no “overconcentration.” However, I cannot find evidence that the state agency considers the safety and security of the citizens around the property in the placement of such homes.
Family Residences plans to provide 24-hour supervision with at least one staff member. My concern is that the street is filled with children, some playing in the open, while students of the high school play sports directly behind this property. While the state has not defined the specific needs of the residents, protecting residents would certainly represent a security challenge for one person.
No one disagrees with the need for these homes, but one must question the decision-making process that allows such a facility next to a public school. Safety should be the primary consideration of the state, especially when there are more suitable locations that would prevent such risks.
Annual egg roll not the place for politics
At the annual Easter egg roll at the White House, President Donald Trump said a child told him, “Keep building that wall,” to which he replied, “I will. Oh, it’s happening. It’s being built now” [“A sunny side up,” News, April 23].
I believe such behavior is unpresidential and insulting. During a fun event, policies should not be discussed. Not everything should be a rally for the president’s policies. If anything, talking about the history of the egg roll or Easter traditions would be more appropriate.
Hold a summit on Central America
President Donald Trump has proposed that the “solution” to stem the migrant tide would be to transfer migrants to sanctuary cities [“Trump immigrant threat,” News, April 13].
This won’t get to the root of the problem. A summit should be convened with leaders of Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador to discuss conditions for continued U.S. aid to these countries to stem the outgoing tide. Instead, Trump cut off aid, as if such a move will solve the problem, and has rejected the idea of a summit.
The summit would discuss ways to give people incentives to stay in their countries based on the availability of jobs, housing, health care, education, public safety and other basic human rights necessary for social stability. A commission of economists, business leaders, health professionals, legal and law enforcement professionals, educators, and experts on infrastructure development could be formed to closely manage U.S. aid for programs to create incentives not to leave. Moreover, the aid would be monitored by the panel to ensure legitimate and effective expenditures so the money would not flow into the pockets of the politicians.
It’s not easy, but there’s no reason why such a change in our foreign aid to these countries cannot succeed if carefully applied to stem the immigrant tide and conceivably persuade many migrants to return to their homes.
In response to “President is ‘frustrated.’ So are Americans” [Opinion, April 13], I am frustrated that not enough is being done to stop the illegal entry of immigrants into this country. I am frustrated at parents who drag their children thousands of miles through dangerous conditions and then think they can break U.S. immigration laws without consequences. I am frustrated at the people who think we should allow tens of thousands of people into this country without places for them to stay or ways to pay for their needs. I am frustrated at the political bickering over what defines tougher border protection. I am frustrated at the overcrowded detention centers. Yes, I am frustrated at the lack of action to solve this problem.