Letters to the editor: August 8, 2012

Yo, Philly, show some pride in your city!
After liv­ing and work­ing in Phil­adelphia all my life, I have moved to a re­tire­ment com­munity in Schuylkill County.
I am liv­ing near a fam­ily that has helped me get settled in, as I need as­sisted liv­ing. I’m grate­ful for fam­ily to help.
Small-town life is so dif­fer­ent. There is no hustle-bustle and noise of the city streets. A traffic jam is rare. Many people that I have met have lived their en­tire lives here and maybe vis­ited Philly on a rare oc­ca­sion.
I felt that Philly was a small town com­pared to New York. We have so much to be proud of, es­pe­cially now with the new Barnes mu­seum, ex­cel­lent theat­ers and res­taur­ants every­where. Our schools and uni­versit­ies are tops.
I am proud to tell people that I am from Philly as I try hard to get used to the quiet of small-town life. Ac­tu­ally, I don’t have to tell people be­cause most people can pick up my “Pf­hilly” ac­cent if I ask for “a cup of caw­fee.” I didn’t think we spoke oddly, do ya?
En­joy the city, be proud of the North­east and ap­pre­ci­ate what you have.
Janice Jak­ubowitcz
Pott­s­ville, Pa., formerly of Rhawn­hurst

Knights in shin­ing cars
I was dia­gnosed with can­cer in Feb­ru­ary. My treat­ments in­cluded 45 ra­di­ation ther­apies and 12 chemo­ther­apies. I stressed over how I was get­ting to these ap­point­ments, un­til I spoke to an “an­gel” who said they would help. When my fam­ily could not help, the “an­gels” came. I got to every ap­point­ment!
When you are sick, hav­ing sup­port, kind­ness and gen­er­os­ity really mat­ters. So far, the treat­ments have worked and I am grate­ful for all my an­gels that gave me hope.
Please, if you have a day to give, I can only say you will be re­war­ded in a way that is in­des­crib­able.
Eva Ge­bauer

Take a hike, Coun­cil­man
Once again in the So­viet Re­pub­lic of Phil­adelphia, City Coun­cil has spoken with all-know­ing wis­dom.
Coun­cil­man James Ken­ney has de­creed the own­er of Chick-fil-A must “take a hike.”
Just what we need — push suc­cess­ful busi­nesses out of Phil­adelphia (as if we have loads of them wait­ing to move in). And what was Chick-fil-A’s crime? The own­er said he sup­por­ted the bib­lic­al view of mar­riage as het­ero­sexu­al, as he also sup­ports clos­ing his res­taur­ants on Sundays. That’s it. No one who is gay is denied ser­vice.
 Is Mr. Ken­ney aware of the mes­sage he is send­ing? As a pub­lic of­fi­cial he is at­tack­ing a private busi­ness simply for the com­mon, Chris­ti­an be­liefs of the own­er. What does Ken­ney think of tra­di­tion­al Cath­ol­ics? And free speech? His words seem de­lib­er­ately “in­tol­er­ant” to me.
 This is all part of a big­ger polit­ic­al game plan. Ten years ago it was “all we want is civil uni­ons.” Then it had to be mar­riage “equal­ity.” Now, even Pres­id­ent Obama uses the in­clus­ive “gay, les­bi­an… bi­sexu­al, trans­gender com­munity.”
Pretty soon, gay mar­riage will be old busi­ness, as we push in­to gender-free, any­thing goes Amer­ica. Ab­surd…or is it?
This is not a civil rights is­sue, it is a tech­nique for des­troy­ing re­li­gion. If you are ser­i­ously re­li­gious, you are now a big­ot.
And if you want to run a busi­ness in Phil­adelphia, pre­pare to shut up about it — or be­come an athe­ist.
Richard Iac­on­elli

He may be right about Hen­on
I read with in­terest John Snyder’s let­ter to the ed­it­or en­titled Vote “No’ on Bobby “pro tax” Hen­on in the Ju­ly 25 is­sue.
I have re­cently spoken to Coun­cil­man Hen­on about two bills im­port­ant to me and many oth­er work­ing-class voters. I urged Coun­cil­man Hen­on not to vote for Bill 120174, which would take away the Co­hen wage tax break for the low­est paid work­ers in Phil­adelphia. This tax break was to be­gin in a couple of years from now.
Des­pite our many good ar­gu­ments for giv­ing a break to the work­ing-class, Coun­cil­man Hen­on voted to elim­in­ate this wage tax break for the work­ers who make min­im­um wage and just above min­im­um wage. The wage tax is re­gress­ive, just as John Snyder’s prop­erty tax is.
Also, in the sum­mer of 2011 City Coun­cil passed (by a 9- 8 vote) a bill to give 218,000 Phil­adelphia work­ers a small num­ber of paid sick days. Cur­rently, these work­ers have no paid sick days through their em­ploy­ers. May­or Nut­ter ve­toed this pro-work­er bill.
Now in 2012, with a new City Coun­cil, we have 10 of 17 City Coun­cil mem­bers ready to vote for a min­im­um num­ber of paid sick days for al­most all Phil­adelphia work­ers. We need two more City Coun­cil mem­bers to pledge their sup­port be­fore the prime spon­sor will in­tro­duce the bill. The prime spon­sor wants a veto-proof ma­jor­ity of 12 Coun­cil mem­bers. Coun­cil­man Hen­on has yet to sup­port this pro-work­er bill.
So the city coun­cil­man from the lifelong labor back­ground has now taken at least three anti-work­er po­s­i­tions in just his first six months in of­fice. Maybe John Snyder is on the right track.
Pass the “paid earned sick days” bill, re­store the Co­hen wage tax cut for the low­est paid work­ers, lower re­gress­ive taxes like the prop­erty tax and wage tax by rais­ing pro­gress­ive taxes — that is, tax the rich, the 1 per­cent. There are easy ways to tax the rich, and we already have some in place, which we could in­crease.
Tim Kear­ney

Voter ID must be im­ple­men­ted
Mike Turzai, the Pennsylvania Re­pub­lic­an House lead­er, must learn to seal his lips at fu­ture Re­pub­lic­an State Com­mit­tee meet­ings.
His an­nounce­ment that the Voter ID law would help pres­id­en­tial can­did­ate Mitt Rom­ney win Pennsylvania in Novem­ber (by sup­press­ing Demo­crat­ic votes) was in­stant fod­der for Ed Neilson, the state rep­res­ent­at­ive in the Far North­east’s 169th dis­trict.
Ed wasted little time in pre­par­ing a guest opin­ion that ap­peared in last week’s North­east Times. His let­ter, which was 13 para­graphs long and about two-thirds of a page in width, car­ried on ad-in­fin­itum about the neg­at­ive as­pects of this le­gis­la­tion. Con­versely, the North­east Times ed­it­or­i­al about the same sub­ject took just five para­graphs to get it right.
We can and we should con­script an army of vo­lun­teers to go to nurs­ing homes, seni­or cen­ters and to the poor areas of the city in a con­cer­ted ef­fort to ob­tain voter i.d.
The Times ed­it­or­i­al’s sug­ges­tion that PennDOT de­ploy staffers to iden­ti­fied areas with elec­tron­ic ma­chines to re­gister voters makes sense. Moreover, the ma­chines should be made avail­able to a corps of vo­lun­teers.
In a city that is among the poorest of the poor, it’s time we reach out to them, es­pe­cially in the 1st Con­gres­sion­al Dis­trict. We have pock­ets or clusters of mar­gin­al­ized people who have little- to no school­ing. Un­em­ploy­ment in these areas hov­ers near 20 per­cent. Many are il­lit­er­ate. When they walk to vote, with or without i.d., you can bet your bot­tom dol­lar it will be Demo­crat (the ward lead­ers and block cap­tains will see to that.) Voter ID is ne­ces­sary to level the play­ing field in a one-party fief­dom.
John T. Fritz

An im­port­ant les­son from the clergy ab­use
The child mo­lesta­tion by priests, no mat­ter what level of the Ro­man Cath­ol­ic hier­archy they be­longed to, has been go­ing on through the ages. The high of­fi­cials of the church, in­clud­ing bish­ops and car­din­als, covered up this kind of vilest act and put it un­der the rug. But this hein­ous crime did not dis­ap­pear, and now the pain­ful voice of the vic­tims is heard in the courts of law, and justice is done.
Monsignor Wil­li­am Lynn, the high of­fi­cial of the Ro­man Cath­ol­ic hier­archy, was rightly found guilty of cov­er­ing up a child-mo­lest­ing priest and was sen­tenced to three to six years in pris­on. Judge Teresa Sarmina poin­ted out to Monsignor Lynn that he knew what is right but chose to sup­port “mon­sters in cler­ic­al grab.” Judge Sarmina did not fa­vor him for his priestly rank.
Lynn fol­lowed Pres­id­ent Nix­on’s con­ceal­ment tac­tics in the Wa­ter­gate break-in epis­ode and the cov­er-up policy of coach Joe  Pa­ter­no, ath­let­ic dir­ect­or Tim Cur­ley and former vice pres­id­ent Gary Schultz of Penn State Uni­versity in the Jerry San­dusky child ab­use scan­dal.
Ed­ward Avery, a de­frocked priest and a child mo­lester, was sen­tenced  to two and a half to five years in pris­on. Charles En­gel­hardt, an Ob­late of St. Fran­cis De­Sales, and Bern­ard Shero, a former teach­er at St. Jerome’s par­ish school, are ac­cused of child mo­lest­ing and are sched­uled to go on tri­al on Sept. 4.
Now, the col­lar of the priests is im­prin­ted with pe­do­phil­ic stars. It is a de­plor­able, dis­grace­ful and de­graded as­pect of the Cath­ol­ic priest­hood. Lynn vi­ol­ated the teach­ings of the Bible and suffered the con­sequences of his ac­tion.
Chil­dren are our as­sets. They should be pro­tec­ted from sexu­al ab­use. In the clergy sex-ab­use at­mo­sphere, priests and ple­bei­ans should learn a good les­son from the Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 16, Verse 21:
De­sire (for sex), wrath, greed con­sist of  the threefold doors of Hell lead to the de­struc­tion of the self (Atma), so one must give up these three evil traits
Sunil K. Niyogi, Ph.D.
Former as­sist­ant pro­fess­or of phar­ma­co­logy at Thomas Jef­fer­son Uni­versity, Phil­adelphia

Please heed the call to ban arms
Like Mat­thew Mc­Grath, I am con­cerned about the death of people from guns (He yearns for mild gun-con­trol re­forms, Aug. 1 Let­ters to the Ed­it­or).
I fa­vor a ban on as­sault weapons and a one-hand­gun-a-month law. As a mem­ber of the North­east Philly Peace and Justice group, I fa­vor such le­gis­la­tion.
I also be­long to Heed­ing God’s Call, a group that demon­strates monthly in front of Mike and Kate’s Gun Shop on Ox­ford Av­en­ue in Fox Chase. We hope to per­suade the own­ers to sign the “10 Point Code of Con­duct” drawn up by May­or Nut­ter and oth­er U.S. may­ors.
The tra­gedies caused by gun vi­ol­ence will de­crease if the code is fol­lowed. This will cause a loss of in­come to con­scien­tious shop own­ers. That is the price of safety.
Mary Hamilton
Fox Chase

Do­ing noth­ing on gun con­trol is stu­pid
With the sign­ing of the Con­sti­tu­tion, our fore­fath­ers gave the right to pro­cess guns. At the time, the in­tent was to pro­tect prop­erty and to shoot game. This right was nev­er in­ten­ded to al­low someone to have an ar­sen­al of guns or bul­lets.
It is shock­ing to real­ize that any­one can leg­ally buy weapons that are used only by someone in the mil­it­ary or in a movie scene. If the choice is to do noth­ing about the pur­chase of such weapons, how stu­pid. By such a de­cision, we are giv­ing people the right to con­tin­ue mass murders.
Mary Pat­ton
Fox Chase

Base­ball camp coun­selors were a hit
I ex­tend a big thank you to the coun­selors at the Rich­ie Ash­burn Base­ball Camp held at Crispin Field. They did an ex­cel­lent job teach­ing the skills of base­ball while keep­ing it fun. Dur­ing the heat wave they re­minded the chil­dren to drink and took short breaks in the shade as needed. They were all so pos­it­ive and help­ful to the chil­dren.
My two girls tried base­ball for the first time and loved it! Of course my little one wants her coun­selor, Coach Bill, to be the coach of her team when it starts. My boys were in the camp last year and I know they en­joyed it.
This year I stayed to watch and was in awe of how quickly they got or­gan­ized and how won­der­ful the coun­selors were. The chil­dren had a great ex­per­i­ence! Thanks again!
Patti Cov­er

Speak your mind  …
Let­ters should be 300 words or less. Short let­ters have a bet­ter chance of get­ting pub­lished. All let­ters are sub­ject to edit­ing and MUST in­clude the writer’s full name along with day­time and even­ing phone num­bers for veri­fic­a­tion pur­poses. An­onym­ous or il­legible let­ters will NOT be pub­lished. Mail to: Let­ters to the Ed­it­or, North­east Times, 2512 Met­ro­pol­it­an Drive, Tre­vose, PA 19053. Fax: 215-355-4857. E-mail: pronews@bsmphilly.com

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