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Letters to the Editor

Freedom or security

I have been reading the letters calling for more “camera surveillance” on our busy streets. This is an issue that needs public debate.

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People are rightly horrified at the hit-and-run deaths of pedestrians, and the reckless driving on our streets. We all want something done about it.

I wonder, though, how far we are willing to go with the government using cameras to surveil citizens. Camera technology is rapidly improving. Recognition AI means we can be watched and identified as we go everywhere.

One thing we know is that when people in power get information, they always use it. I expect that large camera databases will eventually be shared for other reasons. I worked for the government. I saw the abuse of confidential data.

If you use multiple banks, work a 2nd job, maybe the IRS will track you. Criticize a politician and maybe he’ll track you to your lady friend’s hotel room. Buy a case of soda in Bensalem – you’re a soda-tax dodger.

I do not trust the government with what are essentially spying tools. Modern cameras and Artificial Intelligence are making China a police state. Do we want to live in a police state?

It seems we want cameras to make people behave – but maybe we need to ask why we have so much bad behavior in the first place.

Our schools and our families are failing to teach moral values. Our city has a culture of lawlessness. How many dangerous drivers have long criminal records? How many are illegals with no license or insurance?

More cameras will not correct these problems, but prosecuting criminals will.

Widespread camera surveillance may get people to behave a little better — but at what cost? People who are willing to give up freedom for a little more security may in the end wind up with neither.

Richard Iaconelli

Rhawnhurst

Feeble-minded followers of fraud

Recently I read some opinions, calling Trump a draft-dodging, Putin puppet and a man who broke the Ten Commandments. Really? I still have the video of Trump telling leaders from Germany and other countries to refrain from buying oil from Putin, saying that Putin is no good. These Whoopi Goldberg, The View, CNN fans believe the fake news, They constantly believe the lies and smear campaigns. Even lawyer Alan Dershowitz, a “Never Trump” Democrat, has stated that the radical far left is smearing and falsely accusing Trump and breaking the Constitution. Imagine that? A Never Trump Democrat sees the lies and exposes the corrupt Democratic witchhunt against Trump. Now I don’t care what party you belong to but blaming a guy about dodging the draft 60 years ago or breaking the Ten Commandments or any other knitpicking that has been thrown at him is feeble minded. They should be looking at the state of the country. We all should be looking at the economy. Didn’t you notice food, gas and consumer prices? Did you notice the wide-open border? Did you see the crimes? I bet the parents of the victims of illegal immigrants aren’t voting for Bumbling Biden. Does your child need to become a victim? (Under Trump: Inflation 1.4%, Lowest illegals in 40 years, $1.89 gas). Oh, and since the pompous guy brought up the Bible and how Trump broke the Ten Commandments, how about not voting for a president who says that there are many genders. God created a man and a woman. God is against abortion. But you want to vote for a radical left that wants to pull the living baby halfway out of the womb and dismantle the baby as it suffers great pain. Yet, Bumbling Biden calls it reproductive care. But you don’t like Trumps tweets. The feeble minded will never understand, as our country declines.   

Chuck Raffaele

Fox Chase

Money talks

Mark S. Ritter’s letter is Exhibit #1 of how uninformed and mis-informed the majority of drivers are.

Speed bumps are a traffic obstruction that have nothing to do with safety. Speed bumps delay emergency and fire equipment to the extent that people die from heart attacks and strokes, and houses burn to the ground.

Stop signs exist to determine right-of-way, and must conform to traffic warrants, based on traffic volume, in order to be installed. It’s against Pennsylvania law to use stop signs to slow traffic. There are many illegal stop signs in Philadelphia that are also unnecessary. Drivers know this. That’s why you see drivers disregard them.

People “run” red lights because the yellow light is too short. If you add 1 second to the yellow light, 70% of red light violations go away, forever.

If there are intersections with high rates of accidents, the intersections are not properly engineered/designed. Best Practices Highway Safety Engineering will solve most of the problems, not cameras. Cameras don’t stop accidents, cameras can only take pictures. Cameras are an enforcement-for-profit racket that has nothing to do with highway safety.

As an example, Roosevelt Boulevard could be made safer, overnight, by synchronizing traffic lights to 45 mph. That would end speeding and red light running. But it won’t be done because that would make cameras unprofitable. The Boulevard will be kept dangerous for the money.

Tom McCarey

Berwyn

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