Letters to the editor

Voter roll woes

Recently my wife received, at her childhood home, a document in her maiden name, to obtain a mail in ballot.

She moved out when we got married over 43 years ago.

A family friend claimed his mother is on the voter rolls, and she died eight years ago.

Hopefully, they used more accurate information than the voter registration rolls to determine my life expectancy.

Mayer Krain

Modena Park

A waste of money

It’s amazing that Philadelphia has lost so much money in tax revenue it can find unique ways to spend the little that’s left. We have crossing guards standing in front of empty schools. I guess for the rest of the Eagles home schedule, we will have multiple police officers standing guard over an empty parking lot at The Linc (probably on overtime). I can see The Linc still being surrounded when it’s the last home game, and they are 0-7 at home and it’s sleeting. The best is the expense of porta potties for the homeless encampments. I guess next we will make them real comfortable with piped-in heat and Muzak at our expense. It must be great spending other people’s money.

Richard Donofry

East Torresdale

Army was antifa

In her letter on Sept. 23, Theresa Adamczyk referenced Antifa while talking about Mussolini’s Fascist Party. It made me realize that the original Antifa was the U.S. Army fighting the Fascist regimes of Mussolini and Hitler.

Ronni Flitter

Somerton

Nursing homes need funding

Nursing homes and other senior care providers remain at the epicenter of this pandemic and desperately need funding. For these facilities, COVID-19 remains a 24-hour challenge, but they’re running out of resources and need help from Harrisburg.

Pennsylvania’s state government must provide immediate financial support so nursing home facilities can purchase personal protective equipment, pay for government-mandated testing and hire and retain skilled personnel. This can be done because our state government is sitting on $1 billion in federal CARES Act funding. This money must be released now to help care for our front-line workers and our residents, who remain vulnerable to this virus.

It’s disappointing that Gov. Wolf did not make long-term care one of his priorities for the fall legislative session. At a time when hospitals are not stressed by COVID-19, the pandemic remains a serious threat in long-term care facilities. Yet, our members continue to be asked to do more with no new funding.

The General Assembly must take steps immediately to ensure nursing homes have the emergency financial support necessary to help us save lives.

Anne Henry

LeadingAge PA

Why the fear?

I was appalled at the letter by Theresa in the Sept. 23 issue of the Times.

So a Trump rally makes you feel unsafe? Trump supporters are racists who “spit filth?” And you are threatening to take names?

Take my name. I’ll admit, I was totally wrong about Trump. (Like you are now.) I thought he was just a mouthy celebrity. I now see him as a serious, courageous fighter for the ignored and forgotten American.

Trump created a powerful, full-employment economy, fought against illegal immigration and bad trade deals that steal American jobs and for a historic Middle East peace agreement. All this with very little help from Congress and a hostile federal bureaucracy, both trying to undermine his presidency. Amazing.

Most importantly, Trump is trying to restore a civil culture, with education that respects history, good judges and support for religious institutions and individual rights. Many Democrats, sadly, have turned into socialists and totalitarians who like to “take names,” as they defund the real police.

Trump’s problem is that he is not part of the corrupt system where Washington insiders line their pockets at the expense of the working class. How many of our elite are on the payroll of China? The elites control our media and fool people like you.

So you want the Trump supporters out of your neighborhood? Send in the Antifa and BLM you seem to admire to block your highways and trash your stores — while Democrat leaders stand by and do nothing. I’ll gladly take the Trump supporters. They make me feel proud and safe.

Richard Iaconelli

Rhawnhurst

Social Security jeopardized

On the opinion page (9/16), it was stated that as a “scare tactic,” the Biden campaign warns that if Trump gets his way, “Social Security will be bankrupt by 2023.” What are the facts? Under the executive action that Trump signed on Aug. 8, the 6.2% payroll tax, which is used to fund Social Security, can be deferred for workers beginning Sept. 1 through the end of the year, at which point employers are obligated to start collecting back what is owed. An employee seeing an increase in his take-home pay, two months before the election, might assume that his taxes have been cut by the president and be influenced in deciding whom to vote for, missing the fact that as of Jan. 1, 2021, he would be paying a double Social Security deduction until April 30, 2021. Trump has also indicated that he wants to “terminate” the tax so that workers are not required to pay back the money and at a later point he said, “If I’m victorious on Nov. 3, I plan to forgive these taxes and make permanent cuts to the payroll tax,” and, “I’m going to make them all permanent.” Since payroll taxes fund Social Security, many people are worried about the long-term effects of diverting money away from this social safety net for seniors. Social Security Chief Actuary Stephen Goss, who has held this position since 2001, for over 19 years, under George W. Bush, Barack Obama and Donald Trump, said in a letter, assuming that if this legislation were passed eliminating payroll taxes as of Jan. 1, 2021, the trust fund providing monthly stipends for Americans with disabilities would be emptied first around the middle of 2021 and the fund that supports Social Security payments would run dry after the middle of 2023. This is not a biased Biden political warning, as claimed in the letter to the Northeast Times, but a statement by Social Security. People can have their own opinions but not their own facts.

Mel Flitter

Somerton

Where does Martina stand?

As we approach the final quarter of the tumultuous year that has been 2020, the amount of vitriolic panic that has taken over our electoral politics seems to be at an all-time high. Whether it’s COVID-19, racial unrest throughout the country, the crash (and seeming rebound) of the global stock market or even Tiger King, none seem to have made such a large enough impact on the electorate’s mind other than the divisiveness and discord surrounding the November presidential election between Donald Trump and Joe Biden.

While reading the Sept. 26 copy of the Philadelphia Inquirer, I was extremely disheartened to see and read about the Pennsylvania Republican Party’s plans to install their own hand-picked electors by the commonwealth’s legislature, if the results of the November election aren’t squarely uniform and tallied by the end of election night (See 9/26 Philadelphia Inquirer: “Could the Pa. GOP bypass the popular vote regardless of who wins? Here’s what we know”).

Like many of the constituents in Northeast Philadelphia, I’ve seen the value of the democratic process at the federal, state and city level as well as our little enclave here in southeastern Pennsylvania. It pains me to see that our own state representative, Martina White, refuses to push back against GOP Chair Lawrence Tabas in this blatant abuse of power and disintegration of our grand democratic experiment that began over two centuries ago.

Now I turn my attention to Rep. White. Do you vow to your constituents not to follow through on the discourse that top GOP legislators are saying about appointing hand-picked electors regardless of the commonwealth’s popular vote in November?

The solemnity of the American electoral process is being chopped away before our very eyes and I hate to see that the person elected to represent and fight for our views will roll over and let the GOP bosses dictate what she should and should not say while deliberately fracturing our democratic republic through vile electioneering.

As a constituent who has voted in every single election (federal, state, local and primary) since I was 18 years old, I do not ask this to be a rabble-rouser or for the sake of agitation. Dissent is as American as apple pie and baseball. I just ask that those elected to represent me, my family, friends and neighbors be held accountable for their views and actions.

Conor McDonald

Walton Park

Teachers are committed

In response to Richard Iaconelli’s opinion letter, “Open the public schools,” my family and I had COVID-19 back in the spring. My husband and I were very ill. Luckily, our children had mild cases. Being as we were staying in, we believe he got it from someone at the supermarket. I volunteer in our local public elementary school where our girls attend.

We do not fit the description of the parents and kids you have been seeing, as we are remaining indoors as much as we can. My girls have not seen their friends in person. We wear masks.

I am assuming you do not have children in school so you do not know the school district’s plan this year. They are going to have instruction from the teachers. School will be in session from 8:30 to 3, virtually. The spring was another story, as things were so hectic. However, we still did get instruction live from the teachers during that time. We even had a teacher in our school who was teaching while going through cancer who sadly passed away before of all this. This is just one example of their commitment. There are teachers who are immune-compromised as well as some students.

Would I prefer my children to be in school? Of course I would. I have to rearrange my schedule at my business so I can teach my children at home while my husband’s working at home.

However, safety should be our first priority. Just because some people choose not to be safe with their kids outside doesn’t mean the rest of us have to suffer.

We also must consider grandparents who may live in the household with their grandchildren.

I applaud our teachers who were able to do a fantastic job under the circumstances in the spring. They have been in direct contact with us already regarding the upcoming school year. After being sick for a month with COVID-19, I know first hand why they need to do this.

Thank you to all of our teachers who are going to do the best they can this school year.

Eileen Teti

Castor Gardens

More courtesy needed in the park

Not surprised at the chaos in Pennypack Park (July 29 article). I’ve seen the same, and worse. We can’t expect much – even many locals lack basic civic virtue vital for sharing public spaces.

I rode the bike path there 2010-2018, routinely reporting illegal activity and felled trees blocking the bike path out of concern EMS would be delayed from reaching elderly and others with medical emergencies. I thus sometimes used a handsaw to cut and move smaller obstructions, knowing the city might not remove them.

City neglect, plus inconsiderate people, caused me serious injury three times, the last of which later required hospitalization. Many pedestrians and dog owners (maybe 50% obeyed leash laws) feigned deafness, or plugged their ears with earbuds. It’s an excuse to hog the path and ignore polite attempts to alert them before squeezing past. Some were still oblivious, despite clearly not being deaf, or intentionally stepped in front of me, knowing I would swerve and fall on mudslides the city rarely cleared. My lifelong hearing loss never prevented me from being considerate, so I found their attitude offensive and inexcusable. Also, though motor vehicles are banned from city parks, dirt bikers and illegal dumpers were not deterred from driving there.

Park rangers were a rarity (nonexistent now?). Only police can control unruly, intoxicated scofflaws, but they’ve been quietly “defunded” for decades. Now career politicians and bureaucrats nationwide are openly demonizing them, supporting abolishment, to deflect attention away from their own much greater culpability in current controversies. Philadelphia’s own mayor and anti-police D.A. are interested only in “revolution” and not in protecting law-abiding taxpayers, or governing.

I stopped going – no longer a safe alternative to bike lanes. It’ll get worse, unless voters throw out entrenched careerists. If not, unsafe parks will be the least of our problems. Think – don’t emote – before you vote.

Tom A. Wetten

Parkwood