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Make politicians pay for legalizing pot 

A marijuana legalization bill was signed into law

A marijuana legalization bill was signed into law Wednesday, allowing limited home growth and opening one of the largest pot markets in the nation. Credit: AP/Charles Rex Arbogast

If people don’t think marijuana is a gateway drug to stronger drug abuse like oxycodone, cocaine, heroin and meth, I believe they’ve been living in a box. If our state representatives feel it’s OK to pass such a terrible bill, they should be held accountable ["Cuomo signs bill to legalize recreational pot," News, April 1]. If any New Yorker is a victim of a crime or motor vehicle accident in which the other party is under the influence of drugs, I say we should hold our representatives and governor legally accountable as a whole and individually. Just like with police officers.

We can sue officers individually and also the police department, so why not the State Senate and individual senators? Maybe they would think twice about passing such bills. To me, it’s just another money grab. Instead of the money going for tax relief, our governor plans to give a significant amount of the tax revenue to communities impacted by unequal enforcement of marijuana laws.

Are we going to pay their legal fees for past arrests? Don’t we have enough trouble with people driving while intoxicated and other crimes where alcohol is a factor? You’d think we’d learn from our mistakes.

Ron D’Onofrio,

Huntington Station

With the state legalizing marijuana and the current condition of our society’s mental health stability, I am greatly disappointed that our elected officials have apparently decided that money comes before health. This is particularly true with our younger generation while they develop neurologically. To condone a mind-altering substance during their formative years is quite disturbing to me, to say nothing of the safety issues involved in an altered state of consciousness.

Paul Feinberg,

South Setauket

Your editorial "A yes to pot on one condition" [March 23] seemed to suggest deferring the retail sale of marijuana in New York, pending development of a test similar to an alcohol breathalyzer. I believe Newsday’s editorial board was behind the curve. As it pointed out, over-the-counter retail sales will shortly be available in New Jersey and Massachusetts and likely Connecticut soon thereafter. If my nose is to be trusted, an ample supply of illegal weed already can be had on Long Island.

It seems, as a practical matter, the issue should have been whether we needed to wait for researchers, prosecutors, auto insurance companies and powerful police unions to agree on a test while our surrounding states or the black market reap the revenue stream from legalization.

Eric Jurist,

Wantagh

"Weeding out stoned drivers" is fine, but how about better enforcement of existing speed limit laws ["Please, weed out stoned drivers," Opinion, March 29]? Jeffrey L. Reynolds writes that Suffolk County has the highest driving fatality rate in the state and Nassau County isn’t far behind.

That’s without legalized recreational marijuana use. If there’s real concern about traffic fatalities, let’s get serious about enforcing the speed limit on Long Island’s major highways. When I drive at 55 miles per hour in the slow lane, the tailgaters are only a few feet behind me and the speeders make it look like I’m going in reverse.

Ed Gilroy,

Corona

Distracted driving’s effects far-reaching

I was saddened to read about the passing of State Trooper Joseph Gallagher from injuries suffered in 2017 when hit by a texting driver ["Trooper hit by distracted driver in ’17 has died," News, March 28]. What’s more upsetting to me is that four years later, the number of distracted drivers on the roads has increased. I ride on the Southern State Parkway, already notoriously dangerous because of its poor design.

It seems that every third or fourth car I pass has a driver texting. It’s fairly obvious when you’re behind texting drivers drifting out of lanes, hitting their brakes or slowing for no apparent reason. I see local roads as equally impacted.

A few years ago, my wife’s car was hit head-on on a local road near Roosevelt Field. Fortunately, the airbags saved her, but both cars were totaled. The other driver was texting. I see parents texting behind the wheel with kids in the car, not only endangering their children but teaching them it’s acceptable. How many countless accidents were needlessly caused by distracted drivers?

How do we change this behavior? We’re unfortunately dealing with a societal phenomenon with far-reaching impacts. Perhaps the only solution is to make the penalties for distracted drivers akin to those for drunken driving.

Scott Andrews,

Rockville Centre

Teigen gets back just what she deserves

I laughed at the hypocrisy of Chrissy Teigen ["‘Bruised’ Teigen quits Twitter, cites negativity," Flash!, March 26]. She wrote that she’s experienced so many attacks from followers that she’s "deeply bruised." She advised followers to "never forget that your words matter."

Well, Chrissy, did you think that your words didn’t matter when you ridiculed and mimicked former first lady Melania Trump after she spoke at the Republican Convention? You mocked her for not speaking well, and now you’re "bruised" because it’s happening to you.

You deserve what you got.

Ann Mulvey,

Westbury

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