I am a director at Drug Free Long Island,Inc. and Drug Free Massapequa (a volunteer). I am retired after 25 years with Nassau County and 18 years with the Town of Oyster Bay.
At the town I was deputy town attorney and in charge of employees relations and also drug and alcohol matters. At three separate occasions, we had three individuals with drug and alcohol problems whose situations still haunt me. All three were desperately in need of long term inpatient care, over 30 days. Even I could tell by observation (as well as their doctor`s and therapists’ evaluations) that these were seriously ill people simply by listening to their speech patterns. Inpatient therapy had been ordered for them. The insurance company said no, not until they had failed two outpatient courses of treatment. The alcohol abuser had. He was initially placed for 30-60 days inpatient, but against therapist orders he was terminated from treatment after 15 days. He was dead a few weeks later.
I’m writing to inform readers of a simple and effective step we can take to protect our seniors from identity theft — removing Social Security numbers from Medicare cards.
One in five Americans above the age of 65 fall victim to financial fraud. In New York alone, approximately half a million seniors have been prey for scammers.
Recently there have been many tragic situations — unexplainable actions by desperate, stressed, mentally ill and suicidal people.
We, as a nation, seem to forget the millions of poor, needy and ill citizens. We pass by homeless veterans, many of us without a thought of helping them. We see runaway teenagers and we ignore them. Our leaders, so self righteous in their speeches about the American people, then with their next vote, remove millions from SNAP benefits.
Having just watched season one of the cable television series “The Americans,” in which Russian spies kill our own FBI agents in Washington D.C., I question the wisdom and the “fairness” of the Oyster Bay Town Board’s waiving of parking and beach permit fees for Russian diplomats while charging American citizen Town of Oyster Bay residents, who live in Plainview, Old Bethpage, Oyster Bay, East Norwich, Hicksville, Syosset, Jericho, Massapequa, Glen Cove, Farmingdale, Woodbury, Locust Valley, Sea Cliff, Bayville, Brookville, Muttontown, Mill Neck, Bethpage, Lattingtown, and other fine, upstanding communities, $60 for annual automobile beach stickers.
The Department of Veterans’ Affairs (VA) has come under fire for delays with veterans’ benefits and care at their facilities. While I have already called for a criminal investigation into wrongdoing at the VA, I am writing to inform readers of my bill that would enact a common-sense solution to ensure veterans aren’t left waiting for claims.
Currently, New York veterans wait an average of 297 days to receive disability compensation and benefits, a time table that falls far short of the 125-day goal the VA has set for filling these claims. This is unacceptable.
Although I’ve lived in Plainview for 40 years, I’m still not sure if that makes me a “Plainviewer,” “Plainviewite,” “Plainviewian,” or some other appellation.
While I love living in Plainview, I know there are many Plainviewtonians who strongly object to the sky-high property taxes we have to pay for our plots of land and our homes; as well as plenty of parents who are very unhappy with all the Common Core standardized testing going on in our otherwise fine schools. So that’s why I decided to conduct a “search” to see if there are any other “Plainviews” in the U.S. — in case any of them might be “better” places to live than our Plainview.
I’m a journalist, author and psychoanalyst. I have written editorials and have been editorialized myself in Newsday,The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. When I read Michael Miller’s “Viewpoint” (“American’s Deserve a Life After 6 p.m.,” The Weekend, April 30-May 6), I recognized it as one of the finest editorial pieces I have ever come across.
I recall the first time I watched the infamous Cadillac commercial Mr. Miller referred to, and how persuasive and really evil it was. For those who have not seen the ad, it was a 60-second spot of a handsome actor walking through his luxury home, past his built-in pool and approaching his new Cadillac. All the while he discusses how ridiculous the lazy French are for taking off “all of August!” and how Americans are so smart to be willing to sacrifice all their time and energy to work and buy and work and buy.
I don’t mind reasonable incremental changes to our children’s education. What I see, however, when you follow the money with Common Core, is an opportunity for billionaires like Bill Gates to apply monetary influence over politicians in order to gain political favor. I see a public school system focused more on testing and memorization of useless trivia, than students truly learning and grasping concepts.
With Common Core, I see corporations eventually profiting from access to our children’s confidential information, and a further invasion into our privacy. Will any of us be surprised if somehow Bill Gates’ Microsoft eventually benefits from computerized testing and educational software in our public schools?
A recent article by Senator Jack Martins regarding “The Heroin Highway” touched upon some very important concerns for every parent in our community. And while most of our children do not find themselves on this “highway,” the statistics and trends for drug use and abuse are alarming. And sadly, in spite of our best efforts, they are not decreasing.
Drug use is not a problem we can arrest our way out of. It is not a problem that emerges overnight because of “bad parenting” as some have proclaimed. It is not a problem that emerges because of one choice in one moment, although we do know that for some, lives can be lost that quickly. More often than not, drug use begins because of so many things that have gone wrong or not enough things going right. It often begins not with the use of drugs but with the breakdown of those things we know to be vital for children growing up in today’s times.
I regret to advise that I did not win the nomination for governor of the Libertarian Party of New York. Congratulations to this year’s slate: Huntington’s Michael McDermott for Governor; Rochester’s Christopher Edes for Lt. Governor; Queens resident John Clifton for Comptroller and Manhattan’s Carl Person for Attorney-General.
Westbury resident Richard Cooper and his quest to be the Libertarian Party’s candidate for Governor was the subject of John Owens’ column, “The Local Man Who Would Be Governor” (The Weekend, March 26-April 1).
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