Protesters calling for a reopening of Long Island's businesses and...

Protesters calling for a reopening of Long Island's businesses and other institutions rallied Thursday in Commack, echoing similar protests around the state and beyond New York. Credit: Chris Ware

You cannot blame people for protesting when Democratic governors hold us back [“Protest in Commack drawing criticism,” Letters, May 24]. And Republican governors are trying to return to near normal. Sure, a few got a little rowdy, but there was no violence. To me, the TV reporter took this out of context to make it look more than it was. If he couldn’t take the heat, get out of the kitchen. Many of us believe there is too much fake news. Some complaining letter writers are probably against President Donald Trump anyway and will never credit him for how he’s handling the pandemic.

Salvatore Passaretti, Levittown

It’s ridiculous that people telling a “journalist” what they think requires an apology. We keep seeing some in the media attack the president and defend his opponents. I do not blindly support the president, but I do blindly support our Constitution. If President Donald Trump had the same issues as former Vice President Joe Biden the media would crank up their crazy to a thousand. The bottom line is that we control our government. Unless we vote out the people who I see as hurting our relatives in nursing homes and hold them accountable in court, these things will get worse. It’s time for people to realize our freedom isn’t free and it’s our job to vet these people running for office.

Steven Gianni, Oceanside

When five of America’s founders wrote the Declaration of Independence, they asserted people have three “unalienable rights”: Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. There’s a reason why “Life” comes first: If you’re dead, you cannot take advantage of the other rights. (Nice haircut! I’ll just tap on the inside of the urn to express my appreciation.) The “Give me liberty or give me death” protesters must remain alert to the possibility that because of the virus they might get their wish.

Kathryn Nocerino, Shirley

I was recently at a store on a Sunday morning when I noticed a large crowd gathered on Hempstead Turnpike. Judging by the “MAGA” and Trump signs, I figured it was a Trump rally. It was, thinly veiled as an “Open NY” rally. No one had masks, and no social distancing. As a nurse who attended to eight positive COVID-19 patients in my previous two shifts, I was very upset. Please, protesters, don’t bring your germs near me — I have rights, too, including the right to stay healthy! I calmly told a protester to go work in a hospital for a week. This big, flag-waving, patriotic guy looked me in the eye and cursed at me! So, we are making America great again by bullying and intimidating? There has to be a better way.

Theresa Ferm, East Meadow

I’m getting frustrated because how dare they say my job is nonessential. My job put a roof over my family’s heads, fed them, helped my kids with college and two weddings. I paid taxes to provide a salary for our political leaders to sit home and play partisan politics, collecting their full salary while we go without. And how dare they say practicing my faith is nonessential. I’m tired of my fellow faithful, no matter what their faith is, being harassed by politicians. We have known for more than a month the targeted group is mostly seniors with and without preconditions so let’s take care of them and let us go back to work. It’s time to demand we get our civil liberties back.

Bernie Bienwald, Centerport

I understand the anger and frustration of protesters against the lockdown because their livelihoods are being lost, especially those whose small businesses have closed with no idea if they’ll ever reopen [“Protest in Commack drawing criticism,” Letters, May 24]. But their right to gather, shop and even worship in groups is outweighed by the right of all of us to not be exposed to COVID-19. The Constitution’s preamble includes providing for the “common defense” and the “general welfare.” “Common defense” against highly infectious diseases is part of maintaining the “general welfare” of everyone. No one is an island. We have responsibilities to others as well as individual rights, or we do not have a society. These protesters must realize: Your right to gather, shop or even worship in groups ends at my right to not be infected by your unmasked, close gathering. My right to life outweighs your right to these gatherings until this pandemic ends.

Ed Ciaccio, Douglaston

President should be seen wearing mask

I’m confused. How did this pandemic become a political football? Democrat or Republican, we are all in this together. The nation should be united as we were after 9/11. I think President Donald Trump, who has said and done things to ignite this firestorm, should lead by example. He should wear a face mask in public at all times, and let the experts tell us what steps and pills to take [“No mask for Trump at Ford site,” News, May 22].

Until then, this nation will become more and more fractured.

Jeff Stein, Holtsville