This week’s letters to the editor remember the Fox Chase woman struck and killed by a drunk driver, and debate NFL players kneeling during the National Anthem.
A dear friend to many
The elderly woman who was hit on Pine Road near Rhawn Street was not a “deer” as the (alleged) DUI driver who struck her apparently called her. Rather, she was a “dear” as in friend to me and many at the Fox Chase Dunkin’ Donuts store. There was not a customer who frequented the doughnut shop that wasn’t greeted by Mabel Stottler as they walked in.
Always happy, jovial and teasing — that was Mabel. She acted younger than her years and got around town quite well for a woman of her 85 years. A widow with no family, Mabel made us her family and waited every day for her friends to arrive. Mabel ordered her small coffee black with no sugar and liked her water cup half-filled, never to the top. She was taken care of by everyone at Dunkin’ Donuts and we all looked out for her. We watched out for her most days waiting for her to get a black cab to and from the doughnut shop, but on some days, she would walk to get there.
The morning of Oct. 9 must have been one of those mornings. In the pre-dawn hour, Mabel began her trek with her walker to Dunkin’ Donuts, probably looking forward to meeting and reconnecting with old friends. But on that fateful day, Mabel Stottler met something else — a 24-year-old-driver (allegedly) driving under the influence of alcohol. Now, our dear friend has died. Parents, please look out for your children and discourage them from drinking and driving. Let this be a lesson for someone else. Drinking + driving = disaster.
No more football for him
After the events that have unfolded, I will never again watch a bunch of multimillionaire athletes who never did anything in their lives except play a game and disrespect the flag that draped many a lifeless soldier’s body who gave their lives so ignorant six-foot-somethings could be free to play that game.
You play a game for 60 minutes, then go home. Those who fought for our flag, many were working 24/7 and didn’t get to go home after. And some never made it home at all. So to all you who disrespect that which brave American men and women fought for; as well as our dedicated law enforcement officers here at home; you may think you’re something special, but you’re not. And it shows for some when their on-field careers end and they wind up broke or in trouble with the law.
Editorial: NFL players are not protesting the flag
As Managing Editor of the Northeast Times, I appreciate and respect all of the Letters to the Editor that are submitted by our readers. After some recent letters, however, I felt to need to voice my opinion as well.
Firstly, I want to make this fact crystal clear — NFL players who are kneeling during the national anthem are protesting inequality and injustice in America.
Many players have voiced this fact during interviews and on social media platforms. For example, on Sept. 24, Philadelphia Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins tweeted, “More than ever we remain committed to advocacy for equality and social justice for all!” That same week, the Seattle Seahawks released this team statement: “As a team, we have decided we will not participate in the national anthem. We will not stand for the injustice that has plagued people of color in this country.”
Judging by the recent letters we have received, it seems that many Northeast residents think NFL players are protesting our flag, our freedom and our soldiers. That is simply not true. I think many of these misconceptions are fueled by our President, who has tweeted, “If a player wants the privilege of making millions of dollars in the NFL, or other leagues, he or she should not be allowed to disrespect our Great American Flag (or Country) and should stand for the National Anthem. If not, YOU’RE FIRED. Find something else to do!”
I find that quite hypocritical, especially since our president did not stand for the nightly playing of “Retreat” on a Pennsylvania Air National Guard base earlier this month. At the time, Trump was conducting an interview with Fox News host Sean Hannity. Instead, our president sat and talked throughout the song, even jokingly asking “Are they playing that for you or me? They’re playing it in honor of his ratings,” referring to Hannity.
No, Mr. President, they are not. The song signifies the lowering of the American flag. According to the Army Regulation’s Salutes, Honors, and Visits of Courtesy, this tradition is afforded the same respect as the playing of the national anthem.
It is all a smokescreen.
He wants us to debate these “controversial” topics, which are really just distractions. Meanwhile, he is gutting our healthcare, deporting student immigrants and giving more tax cuts to the rich. American citizens are dying in Puerto Rico and he’s making jokes about coming to their aid.
While Trump claims he respects our flag, I believe he disrespects any non-white Americans who are trying to stand up for it. And as American citizens, I think instead of getting upset about how people are protesting, we should understand why they are protesting. And work together to fix those injustices. ••
Melissa Mitman is the Managing Editor of the Northeast Times. She can be reached at MMitman@bsmphilly.com