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Letters to the Editor

Residents sound off on homeland security, the NFL and soda taxes in this week’s letters to the editor.

A big threat to our security

First of all, it’s a sad day for all Americans and citizens of the world, for the Las Vegas tragedy.

But I’m tired of hearing the same repeated, pathetic excuses when some talking head says that “we have to figure out what went wrong,” and headlines read “seeking answers,” after every shooting that happens.

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It’s not hard to figure out. The United States has been having this problem since 1999 with the Columbine shootings, and it hasn’t stopped since. And the authorities still haven’t changed their way of thinking about major security issues.

We wait for hours checking in at an airport, as they make us take our shoes off and check our bags, but hotels allow someone like Stephen Paddock to bring in 10 suitcases without an ounce of suspicion.

After the Christiana Mall shooting in Delaware, the authorities suggested metal detectors to all commercial entrances. But again, it fell to a deaf ear. And what followed was the shootings at Sandy Hook school, Colorado movie theater, Orlando nightclub and now the Las Vegas hotel. The number one threat to our existence now — not climate change or plans of going to Mars — is security.

And if this recent tragedy is the straw that broke the camel’s back, then it’s time that our homeland security starts waking up after its long sleep from Columbine.

Al Ulus

Somerton

Harmony from both sides

You can’t buy a product if someone isn’t selling it, so let’s put the slavery issue where it belongs.

Black people rounded up their own people to sell, and started slavery. And that should be the guilt complex today that whites have embraced, but in the black community. Evidently, it’s suddenly a crime to be proud of your race, except if you espouse “Black is beautiful” or “Black Lives Matter,” etc., or belong to the many organizations like the black caucus or black clergy or black journalists and many others. These groups are racist by their very titles, and all of a sudden the country is ashamed because a few groups claim white nationalism or white supremacy.

If you want harmony, it has to come from both sides and not select discrimination from one side, but riots, etc. If certain titles offend them and if a law was passed barring race in any title, as the Civil Rights Act was supposed to do, let’s see who would suffer the most. Let’s get the NAACP and United Negro College Fund, etc. to be the first to offer to agree to participate.

Jim Laverty

Parkwood

Where is their respect?

I certainly know the constitutional right to freedom of speech. I would argue, however, that it is disrespectful to every veteran who ever served in the military and their families. Especially for those who died or lost loved ones, as well as those who were maimed or suffer PTSD from serving in combat.

The NFL players who protest during the playing of the national anthem are some of the greatest recipients financially of the freedoms these people served to provide and protect. Should they not respect this time-honored tradition, at least for those who served?

Daniel Page

Holmesburg

NFL players are a disgrace

What a slap in the face it is to our servicemen, our veterans and most of all to our country. Other countries must think very little of us.

The owners and announcers are afraid to open their mouths. I wonder how they feel when they look in the mirror. I guess they don’t want to see what a coward looks like. Thank God we have a president with guts who’s not afraid to open his mouth. At least he doesn’t have to be afraid to look in the mirror.

James Nigro

Morrell Park

NFL players out of control

I would encourage all NFL players and management to kneel before games — in prayer. Your adoption of the biased and politically motivated concerns of Black Lives Matter is a big mistake. Yet there is a worthy cause you can adopt as your own.

Pray for all the wives and girlfriends your teammates have beaten, the children they’ve abused. Pray for the dogs they have tortured.

Pray for Odell Beckham, Jr. — who in the midst of all this raw emotion — mimics urinating in the end zone recently, against the Eagles. How symbolic of an over-privileged, immature NFL athlete.

Ask for “social justice” for their victims, please. And ask us to forgive you — for years of your public silence.

Richard Iaconelli

Rhawnhurst

Blame Dems for soda tax

The soda tax from our illustrious mayor and his pack of Dem leeches is total unrefined bovine waste. They have lied about it from the very beginning and I’ll lay odds it’s the tip of the iceberg. It was supposed to be sugar containing drinks not including diet. Then they added diet drinks with artificial sweeteners so even flavored zero calorie water is now taxable.

The biggest lie from these so-called elected officials that supposedly work for the people of Philly? Juice is now taxable, too. Fruit juices, punches and lemonade that are less than 50 percent fruit and/or vegetable juice are listed as taxed, but 100 percent juice is supposedly not taxed. Pure BS from those in City Hall, because it is taxed unless it is never from concentrate.

My wife went to ShopRite to buy Kedem 100 percent grape juice, which on the label states no added sugar, colors or flavorings. Ingredients state grape juice, grape juice from concentrate and the preservative used. Better ask if your orange juice and 100 percent juice boxes are taxable before you buy. Seems real juice concentrate used to heighten sweetness makes them “sweetened” since some drinks use concentrates to sweeten.

Don’t like this new tax? Blame yourself if you voted Dem in the last election. I suggest anyone that is voting age write Repeal the soda tax with name and address and send it to the mayor. We can’t impeach officials in Philly, they passed laws long ago to make sure of that, but we can flood them with demands to end this extortion and remember it next election.

Hezakiah Levinson

Rhawnhurst

Drink tax makes no sense

In response to Pat Johnson’s Letter to the Editor, “Don’t support soda tax:”

Pat Johnson refers to our beverage tax as a “sugar” tax. If only.

I would still be against a tax on beverages sweetened with sugar and related sweeteners like high fructose corn syrup, but at least there would be a rationale for it — the idea that sugar-sweetened beverages make an especially great contribution to obesity — a theory that is itself scientifically controversial.

But under the present tax, even diet drinks are taxable. The regulation explicitly includes as taxable beverages with “any ingredient that causes humans to perceive sweetness in the absence of sugar.” Including diet drinks for no discernible reason is like a Sesame Street approach to revenue generation.

We might as well impose a special tax every time we buy “3” of any item that begins with the letter “P.”

Howard J. Wilk

Bustleton

Kenney wins, Philly loses

Mayor Kenney keeps on winning in the courts over the beverage tax.

What is he really winning?

What are Philadelphians and businesses losing?

Mayer Krain

Modena Park

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