People react to a military flyover on the National Mall...

People react to a military flyover on the National Mall while President Donald Trump gives his speech during Fourth of July festivities in Washington, DC. Credit: Getty Images/Stephanie Keith

Your report on the Independence Day celebration in Washington was disappointing [“At Trump celebration, it’s crowds, tanks, rain,” News, July 5].

This was a celebration of our nation’s historic separation from a despotic king and the ability to control our own destiny. The detail that the president “fretted about the prospect of empty seats” and therefore his aides had to “mobilize the Trump and GOP social media” to swell the crowd — a comment attributed to “a person familiar with the planning who was not authorized to be identified” — was unfair. President Trump never has to worry about attracting crowds at his rallies. People stand outside to listen.

The report that “Trump became the first president in nearly seven decades to address a crowd at the National Mall on Independence Day” underscored the need for our leaders to promote patriotism in an era when it is sorely lacking. Despite what some would have us believe, the parade and celebration were a wonderful display of national pride that all of us should be glad to celebrate.

Anne Leonardi,

  Mastic Beach

What a colossal waste of taxpayers’ money! President Donald Trump had a military-style Fourth of July celebration. The millions of our dollars spent on this spectacle could have bought a lot of food and medicine for Americans who need it.

This was just another sign of insecurities that have driven most of Trump’s presidency. It was wrong, embarrassing and un-American.

Ann Leahy,


Your petty story on the national Independence Day celebration in Washington was childish and myopic [“Criticism for July 4 plans,” News, July 3]. Our president loves and is proud of our nation. It was entirely appropriate that our military and leadership be on display to celebrate our nation’s independence. Every year, July Fourth celebrations, fireworks, parades and exhibitions are organized by people demonstrating their national pride.

Reports about the politicization of such events or about those who object to the costs risk dividing us.

Cheers to our great country, with all her scars!

Barbara Gildea,

  Miller Place

In part of President Donald Trump’s July Fourth speech, he said, our Revolutionary War army “manned the air, it rammed the ramparts, it took over the airports, it did everything it had to do .  .  .”

Airports? Wilbur and Orville Wright didn’t achieve powered flight until 1903. Trump blamed his gaffe on rain causing his TelePrompTer to fail. I was waiting for Trump to criticize Christopher Columbus for not discovering America sooner by using a nuclear submarine.

Robert LaRosa,


It’s about time we showed our military might on July Fourth. We have to show our military strength so other countries will think twice about attacking us. Democrats worry about the cost? At least $750,000 for fireworks was covered by Fireworks by Grucci, based on Long Island, and Phantom Fireworks, based in Ohio.

Bernard Fradkin,


Editor’s note: The writer served in the Army in Korea in 1951-53.

Use zip-line profits to clean up Jones Beach

Great, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo opened a new zip line at Jones Beach. I am sure it was fun [“Cuomo takes trip on the zip,” News, July 3].

My daughter and granddaughter were visiting from Ohio, and I took them to play miniature golf at Jones Beach. I was so disappointed in the condition of this once fabulous park. Where were the beautiful flowers, the clean walkways? I remember the roller rink, the Indian village and the pristine public beach. I know things change, but it should not be too difficult to keep garbage and papers picked up. Maybe some of the profits from the zip line can be used to hire personnel to keep the park clean.

Irma Ring,

  Massapequa Park

This is a message for Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo: We need our roads repaired, not a zip line.

Tony Fleck,


Penalize lifeguards who focus on phones

Your story “What lifeguards know about pool drownings” [LIhome, July 5] says people in charge of safety around water should “put the cellphone away.”

More than 50 years ago, I taught lifesaving to future lifeguards. There was a policy that lifeguards could not read while on duty. Now, as a senior citizen, I swim regularly in guarded pools at health clubs, and it seems that most lifeguards spend the majority of their time on their devices instead of watching the pool. I believe we need enforceable legislation with fines to prohibit lifeguards from being on their devices when on duty.

William Jaeger,

  Stony Brook

Let’s all plant trees to save the planet

I am writing concerning your very interesting July 5 news article “Cheapest climate fix? A trillion trees.” A photo caption said officials in Milan, Italy, plan to plant 3 million trees. Suppose every Newsday reader plants one tree in his or her backyard this year. That would be an amazing start!

William Morse,

  East Patchogue

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