Letters to the Editor: 03.30.17

Our readers' comments

Art on the Walls

Springs

March 27, 2017

To the Editor:

The East Hampton Arts Council would like to congratulate and thank the East Hampton High School students who took part in our second annual Art on the Walls collaboration. Art is now a part of the point system garnered in the competition between classes in the school’s annual March Madness contest-driven celebration.

Each class has up to approximately 10 students from each grade sign up and each group is given a shape and its class colors to work with, guided by a rubric of specific applications. Arts Council members then come to judge the final pieces. This year in the art challenge the seniors came in first, followed by the sophomores, then a tie between the juniors and freshmen. 

Thank you to Heather Evans, the East Hampton High School art teacher, for her eternal enthusiasm and assistance in helping execute this event. Tony Littman and his East Hampton Town Parks and Recreation Department team were instrumental in preparing the wood for painting and hanging, and we are most appreciative! 

After the March Madness competition the artwork then adorns the walls of the high school. 

Huge congratulations to these teens for beautifying their school for generations to come. 

We at the East Hampton Arts Council are so proud of this collaboration and grateful to the school administration for their support in making it happen. 

Sincerely,

KATE MUETH

JANE MARTIN 

Co-Chairwomen

For the East Hampton Arts Council

Spectacular Event

Springs

March 26, 2017

Dear Mr. Rattray,

The Montauk Friends of Erin St. Patrick’s Day parade was enormous fun, even with the cold weather and rain. A very dapper Chief Eddie Ecker, looking every inch the grand marshal that he was, set the tone for this spectacular event and led the parade as the beautiful strains of bagpipes floated through the Montauk mist. 

The East Hampton Town Republican Committee had a fun, elephant-laden float in the parade. Our three candidate designees for East Hampton Town supervisor and town board, Manny Vilar, Jerry Larsen, and Paul Giardina, were cheered like the rock stars they are by parade-goers. I and others had the privilege of handing out little American flags to parade-goers, who, to a person, were eager and happy to receive that worldwide symbol of freedom.

Thank you and kudos to the Montauk Friends of Erin for sponsoring this spectacular event. Thank you to our wonderful first responders and police officers who kept the parade moving and everyone safe. And thank you to all of the parade watchers who lined the streets, cheering and waving those little flags. 

The Montauk Friends of Erin St. Patrick’s Day parade is a wonderful example of what makes America the exceptional and great country it is.

CAROLE CAMPOLO

Something for Everyone

East Hampton

March 27, 2017

Dear David,

I simply want to share my thanks and appreciation to the LTV Studios and its entire staff. I’ve been producing a wildlife show with LTV (“Imagination Nature”) since early 2014, and have never worked with a more amazing staff of folks, ever. 

Whether your interest is in the priceless historical archives of our special home, or the variety of local voices and shows, LTV has something for everyone. Its beautiful auditorium with stage has lots of comfortable seating and state-of-the-art lighting, sound, and digital projection equipment, along with a remarkable audiovisual crew. 

There is just so much opportunity for all aspects of production at LTV. Whether it’s behind the camera, in front of the camera, or producing your own show, I suggest you take advantage of this gem in our community. If you’re not familiar with LTV Programming, please check out channels 20 and 22 or visit their website, LTVeh.org. I know you will enjoy it. 

Thanks again, LTV. 

DELL CULLUM

Synchronized Swimming

Montauk

March 21, 2017

Dear David:

Last week my daughters finished up their synchronized swimming season. The upcoming repairs to the Y.M.C.A. East Hampton RECenter ended their season a little early. Family and friends were treated to a water show on Saturday night. It was a fun evening.

My wife and I would like to thank Coach Meg Preiss for her instruction and dedication to the team. We would also like to thank the three high school-age team members who put in so much of their time. Prior to their practice, they work with the younger team members. The progress our girls have shown in their swimming strokes and overall strength in the water is noticeable. 

Regards,

MIKE GRANDE

Dead Last

East Hampton

March 27, 2017

Dear David,

I have been reading about the impending merger of Southampton Hospital with Stony Brook University Hospital, and I’m deeply concerned about the impact on patient safety at Southampton Hospital. 

Although it was not publicized in the local papers, Stony Brook received a patient safety grade of F (for fail) from the Leapfrog Group last spring; Southampton Hospital received a B. Although Stony Brook was recently upgraded to a patient safety rating of C, there are a number of indications of a dismal patient safety record.

In the process of researching a New York/Long Island edition of “Finding the Best Healthcare You Can Afford,” I’ve reviewed additional patient safety ratings and outcomes including Stony Brook, along with 14 other New York and eastern Long Island hospitals, and found:

• Stony Brook ranked dead last in a combined safety ranking, while Southampton Hospital tied for first with two other hospitals.

• Stony Brook ranked 13th out of 14 hospitals based on death rates reported to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

• In each of the last three years, Stony Brook was assessed patient safety penalties by Medicare, while Southampton Hospital was assessed none.

• Stony Brook received the lowest possible patient safety rating from U.S. News and World Report.

I don’t know whether the State of New York has considered patient safety in deciding whether it should approve the proposed Southampton-Stony Brook merger, but the community ought to be heard from before it is finalized.

PETER A. WADSWORTH

Of the RECenter

Springs

March 27, 2017

Dear David, 

I sat at a recent board meeting listening to the discussion of the Y.M.C.A. East Hampton RECenter, and a couple of obvious conclusions are true: 

Winters can be pretty dull in East Hampton. Even adults who have cars, many duties, and access to money can find that they are bored. Imagine what that must be like for a teen who may not have hobbies, extended families, or commitments to their homes and the world at large. It spells not much to do to while away the winter doldrums. 

True, the library, with the help of teens, has developed a lovely new place to hang out, but there is a place in East Hampton within walking distance of the middle and high schools that our town gives a hefty sum to support, and that is the center that is now run by the Y.M.C.A.

On the other side of the coin, there is a growing problem with drugs and alcohol addiction that is affecting our kids, with some dire results that have included death. Frankly, with a 9-year-old granddaughter living in East Hampton, I am scared to death. Something must be done, folks. If safe places are needed where kids can be kids with their friends, with supervision, of course, then we must provide it. The consequences are too dire. The RECenter must be held to stricter standards.

Sincerely,

PHYLLIS ITALIANO

A Hat Tip

East Hampton

March 20, 2017

To the Editor:

How about a hat tip to Coach Don Reese for coaching a team with a 99-1 record over a six-year span? That shows passion, dedication, and heart. 

The other team’s coaches and players can get the gold star for participation, a handout our society now expects, but Don and his players are champions and they deserve the trophy. Make Bonac basketball great again. 

EMMA BEUDERT

Basketball Coach

Southampton

March 24, 2017

To the Editor:

“Girls Basketball Coach Fired After 100-0” — does this Fox News headline article fit the description of any coach you know? There are many more articles on running up the score. Articles where coaches have been fired, and that’s at a high school level and up. How can anyone consider what Don Reese does anything other than unsportsmanlike? 

Please speak with the kids, parents, and coaches of the other East Hampton team, the team that went 0-8. The team that Don Reese referred as “not complaining” in your last article. A bunch of 10-year-olds who lost every game, usually by blowout, are “not complaining.” 

DAN SULLIVAN

Designed to Fool

East Hampton

March 25, 2017

Dear Editor:

This coming April Fools’ Day can remind us that the meat, egg, and dairy industries have been playing us for fools year round. Their more remarkable hoaxes include “California’s happy cows,” “free-range chickens,” and “humane slaughter.” All cruel lies.

Less amusing is the stuff they never talk about, like the millions of male baby chicks ground up alive or suffocated slowly in plastic garbage bags because they don’t lay eggs. Or the millions of hens crammed seven to a small wire-mesh cage, unable to move or spread their wings. Or breeding sows locked in metal crates, as their babies are castrated without anesthesia.

  In the spirit of year-round April Fools’ Day, the meat industry has developed a whole dictionary designed to fool unwary consumers. Those filthy cesspools of animal waste that overflow into our drinking water supplies and poison downwind neighbors with putrid odors? They call them “lagoons.” And to make sure that kids don’t confuse pig flesh on their plate with “Babe” or “Wilbur,” they call it “pork.”

  But their fooling days are about done. Many of us are replacing animal meat, as well as dairy milk, cheese, and ice cream, with healthier nut and grain-based products available in every grocery store.

EDWIN HORATH

Heading East

heading east

wavering grasses sweet

hint pastures muddy deep

camera capture scenic path

ocean view we take a bath

far as an eye a seagull fly

fish for bass and black

torrid hurried catch

back road short cut

pass lush brush

old gray barns flank greenery

past little towns find scenery 

adjacent to the Sound

sun appear cloud clear

wave flow in and out

bud green stem no doubt.

JUNE KAPLAN

Blowing the Whistle

East Hampton

March 27, 2017

To the Editor, 

After reading the article in The Star “Worker Blows Whistle on Parks Department,” I can’t help but wonder about the mentality of the man in charge when he ordered a worker to dump 55-gallon drums, each containing several gallons of hazardous waste, into a storm drain on Parks Department property not far from a Suffolk County water well that supplies countless people with their drinking water. 

When the worker said he didn’t think that was a good idea, Richard Webb told him not to worry, just dump it. That’s the kind of dangerous attitude the town can do without. That waste will find its way into the water table eventually — it’s just a matter of time.

Thank you, Michael Grisham, for blowing the whistle and standing up against what you knew was wrong. 

LEO SNYDER

It Was Terrifying

East Hampton

March 25, 2017

To the Editor:

While walking dogs in the woods behind ARF today, a very small, bright orange-colored passenger plane flew perhaps 10 or 15 feet above the treetops right over me. It swerved toward the airport across the way, turned on its side, and looked like it was going to crash, but I guess it landed or took off again, because we saw it circling above a minute or two later. My heart was literally pounding in my chest from fright.

When I finished around 10 o’clock, I stopped at the airport and talked to one of the fellows working at the Hertz counter. He asked my name and started to walk around looking to see if there were any airport staff there, but didn’t see any. I said I just wanted to let someone know that it was terrifying, and in five years of walking dogs over there, I had never seen the planes fly that low or come that close to the shelter. I asked if there was a flying school and perhaps someone new who didn’t know what he was doing, and he said, yes, he thought they did give flight lessons there. 

As I left to go to my car, he followed, looking around the grounds. I didn’t see the orange plane sitting anywhere at the airport. But he shrugged and went back inside. 

If I hadn’t been so scared at the time, I probably would’ve taken a picture with my phone or looked for some sort of ID number on the plane as it flew overhead, and maybe made a police report of some sort. But no such luck.

All I kept thinking was, what if this idiot crashed on the animal shelter. I’m sure they’re not supposed to fly that low or that close to the shelter, or any of the other buildings in the area. 

I’ll add my name to any list that says shut down this airport. 

TRINA SULLIVAN

After the Eggs Are Laid

East Hampton

March 27, 2017

Dear Editor,

The beach that I walk is on Northwest Harbor, at the end of Mile Hill Road. 

One very cool nature event happens in late spring with the full-moon high tides. The horseshoe crabs ride the high tide in and lay their eggs on the beach. And then about a month later the eggs hatch and the little ones make their way into the water.

Well, that’s the way it’s supposed to work. But as soon as the tide goes out after the eggs are laid in their nests, the trucks start driving up and down the beach again and all the nesting spots are destroyed.

I know how crazy the beach drivers get when someone suggests barring them from the beaches, but I don’t think it’s unreasonable to prohibit driving on certain beaches at certain times of the year so that various natural events can proceed unmolested. The beaches will still be open. They’d just have to park their vehicles at the end of the road — and walk.

TOM deVRIES

The Lenient Courts

Springs

March 26, 2017

To the Editor:

Reading the March 16 Star, I was dismayed to read how lenient the courts are. The article reporting on the D.W.I. “Caught on the Road — Again” was astonishing. 

The article reports that a Springs man with a history of unlicensed driving was stopped for a traffic infraction. The breath test reportedly recorded a reading of 0.08, indicating intoxication. Apparently the driver had been arrested previously for a similar charge. At his arraignment, Judge Tekulsky stated that the subject had “been arrested and charged with driving without a license at least 10 other times.” The judge ordered the subject not to drive any further, and threatened jail time if similarly charged in the future. 

My question is, why do we need to charge someone 10 times for driving without a license, especially in light of being intoxicated this time and, according to The Star, having had a previous alcohol-related suspension? 

In another case, a Springs resident was arrested after being stopped for a failure to signal. The breath test reportedly recorded a reading of 0.09, again above the legal limit. The subject was released without bail by Justice Tekulsky, citing as one reason a “relatively low reading.” As far as the law is concerned, the subject was intoxicated, and having a relatively low reading should not be grounds for leniency. 

Each week The Star is printed, there are always reports of drunken driving. Unfortunately, too frequently these incidents involve injury and/or death. I don’t understand the lenient courts, and can only hope that the next time someone drives without a license or is found to have a “relatively low reading,” a life is not lost. 

BILL SHERMAN

Learn a Lesson

Springs

March 27, 2017

To the Editor:

What a shame that Judy D’Mello had to ruin last week’s article on Montauk schoolchildren visiting Congressman Lee Zeldin by beginning it with yet another snide smack at the congressman. Right up front she says “many East Enders” were not granted a similar visit.

Maybe if those East Enders (a Democratic Party hacks) had acted courteously and respectfully as the students did, instead of like an unruly mob, they too could have had the opportunity to talk to the congressman. They could learn a lesson from these eighth graders: Act responsibly and you’ll be treated responsibly.

Sincerely, 

REG CORNELIA


The writer is the chairman of the East Hampton Republican Committee.  Ed.

He Supported It

Montauk

March 26, 2017

Dear Editor,

When Representative Lee Zeldin stands for re-election in 2018, voters on the East End will remember that he supported Donald Trump’s cruel and chaotic health care bill all the way down to its final collapse. He supported it even after the Congressional Budget Office calculated that it would raise our insurance premiums by 15 to 20 percent over the next two years and cause 24 million Americans to lose their health insurance; even after Speaker Paul Ryan struck a back-room deal with the House Freedom Caucus allowing insurers to deny patients essential health benefits like maternity care, mental-health care, and prescription drugs, even after a Quinnipiac University poll showed that only 17 percent of American voters were in favor of the Republican bill. 

And after he and his party failed to pass any measure at all to improve our health care system, despite controlling both houses of Congress and the White House, what was Mr. Zeldin’s message to us, his constituents? Was it an apology for backing a bill that would have done such harm to the working families of New York’s First District? Was it a promise to now work more collaboratively with Democrats and Republicans to find a bipartisan solution to our nation’s health care problems? No. Instead, he posted on Facebook a flippant, dismissive five-word message: “And now Obamacare repeals itself.”

In other words, Congressman Zeldin has decided to do — nothing. That’s his new pledge to his constituents: Because he and his party failed to come up with a plan they were willing even to vote on, they are now going to do absolutely nothing, for the remainder of the 115th Congress, to improve our nation’s health care system; instead, they will let it deteriorate, either through neglect or deliberate sabotage. Mr. Zeldin’s strategy, and his message to the voters who elected him, demonstrates not only his disregard for the responsibilities of his office but also his contempt for the people he is sworn to represent. 

PAUL TOUGH

A Win-Win

Springs

March 25, 2017

To the Editor:

Now what?

The failed attempt to replace the Affordable Care Act is not a time to gloat but represents an opportunity to get it right. The A.C.A. needs improvements, and the Republicans will exploit their failure to replace it with an “I told you so” moment by doing everything possible to undermine it.

Democrats need to be magnanimous by engaging Republicans in exploring ways to bring down health care costs, expand coverage to more individuals, and bring more insurance carriers into the marketplace. If these objectives are achieved it will be a win-win for both political parties, and best yet, for the American people.

FRANK RIINA

Coast Guard Budget

Shelter Island

March 27, 2017

To the Editor:

Ahoy, East End boaters, yachtsmen, sport and commercial fishermen, and all others who “go down to the sea in ships.” Be aware that this administration’s budget calls for a $1 billion cut in the Coast Guard budget for fiscal year 2018. 

We are waterbound out here, and have depended upon the Coast Guard for border protection, defense against terrorism, drug interdiction, fisheries enforcement, and many other services, especially when we need them the most when we, ourselves, are in peril on the water.

The Coast Guard is the smallest of the military branches, and their 56,000 personnel have to guard and protect 96,000 miles of U.S. coastline. We probably get more bang for our taxpayer buck with the Coast Guard than with any other government service. 

Now is the time to get on your phone or computer and call, write, or visit your U.S. Congressional Representative, Lee Zeldin, and tell him to stand up and break from the White House by voting against any Coast Guard budget cuts. And mention that while he is at it, we can get even more with our taxpayer dollars for border protection and terror attack resiliency than any other program by raising the Coast Guard budget. 

For all of us who have always felt safer on the water because we know the Coast Guard is “Semper Paratus,” make your voice heard to preserve its funding and assure its readiness.

PETER VIELBIG

Who Pays for It?

Amagansett

March 26, 2017

Dear David,

When you go on vacation, who pays for it?

Every day we hear Mr. Trump talk about the need to cut costs. It’s reflected in his proposed budget: Meals on Wheels? Gone. The Arts? Gone. 

Yet, almost every weekend President Donald Trump goes on a Palm Beach vacation that costs taxpayers $3 million each trip.

The Secret Service has already asked for more than $60 million to cover security costs to keep Barron in the school of his choice and he and Melania safely ensconced in their Trump Tower.

If that weren’t enough, the Trump children (Donald Jr., Eric, and Ivanka) are enjoying a skiing vacation in Aspen. It’s a family tradition: spring break on the slopes of Aspen. This year, though, they won’t be alone. The Aspen Times reported that there would be 100 Secret Service agents accompanying them. 

The cost of the trip has, not surprisingly, not been disclosed, but it is estimated to be more than $3 million. There have been reports that the Secret Service has already run up a ski rental bill of more than $12,000. And all these expenses will be paid for with your money.

The total annual budget for the National Endowment for the Arts that Trump wants to eliminate is about $146 million. The added expense of paying for Trump’s weekend Mar-a-Lago jaunts, family vacations, and his son’s school choice? About the same.

But isn’t he a billionaire?

ROBERT WICK

Cultural Tragedy

Springs

March 22, 2017

Dear David:

Sadly, the Trump administration hopes to abolish the National Endowment for the Arts, using the altar of cost savings. The true cost will be the societal vacuum left if the N.E.A. is eliminated. The N.E.A.’s budget is minuscule — $148 million last year, .004 percent of federal discretionary spending. The arts sector it supports employs millions of Americans and generates billions each year in revenue and tax dollars. 

Founded in 1965, the N.E.A. serves critical functions. It promotes the arts by distributing grants and stimulating private funding. N.E.A. grants receive the most attention. Grants average $26,000 and require a one-to-one match for every federal dollar. While this may sound small, these grants sustain the arts in areas where people don’t have access to major institutions.

N.E.A. grants cover the entirety of our congressional district, from Montauk to Riverhead (East End Arts and Humanities Council, $30,000 in 2016), to Bridgehampton (the Children’s Museum for the East End, $15,000 in 2016), to Water Mill (the Parrish Art Museum), to Stony Brook (Stony Brook University).

The N.E.A. also assists to defray costs of insuring arts exhibitions. This program is crucial. For example, this fall, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York will host a major exhibition on Michelangelo, bringing together masterpieces from across the world. Many visitors, including schoolchildren from the metropolitan area (maybe even from the East End), will get to see masterpieces that they would otherwise never be able to see. The insurance valuation covering the works to be displayed is a whopping $2.4 billion! Not even the Met, the largest art museum in the nation, could afford the insurance coverage without the federal indemnity the N.E.A. makes possible.

Mr. Trump’s attempt to eliminate the N.E.A. conceals a more partisan agenda. The last time the N.E.A. was seriously challenged was in the 1990s, when it was criticized for supporting artists and institutions that refused to adhere to notions of propriety embraced by conservative factions of the day. This current call to abolish the N.E.A. harkens the beginning of a new assault on artistic activity. As everyone on the East End knows, art has been an important part of our culture for decades. Everywhere one goes one encounters art. Of course, we all know the most famous East End names: Pollock, Krasner, de Kooning, Kline, and Ferren, to name a few; but one of the North Ferry captains was an important East End artist as well (honored with an exhibition at the Parrish).

We all are aware that art provokes and entertains — it enhances our lives. Eliminating the N.E.A. ends the investment by the American government to incite curiosity and enhance the intelligence of its citizens. Never the philanthropist, despite his claimed fortune, Mr. Trump should be ashamed to be the architect of this cultural tragedy. The U.S. citizenry needs — indeed deserves — a vital arts scene, one that will inspire us to understand who we are and help us to understand others. 

CAROL O’ROURKE

On a Lighter Note

Montauk

March 20, 2017

Dear David,

According to a recent internet blog, sources in the British intelligence community are claiming that President Trump ordered a nuclear strike on Pyongyang from Mar-a-Lago on the evening of March 17. Shortly after the order was issued to the Secretary of Defense and the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Trump tweeted: “North Koreans are bad commies!! Not like the Chinese who are not so bad commies.” This was followed by a second tweet: “Neither of these people comes close to the goodness of our ex-commie bros in Russia.” 

The British sources believe that the order was the result of Trump viewing an earlier Fox News program on the Korean War that was fought from 1950 to 1953. Apparently, Trump did not listen closely enough to the program and thought that the invasion was actually occurring on real time. The order was never executed, because the military was well aware that the president was a political neophyte whose words should never be taken literally. Trump has promised a thorough investigation of the invasion. The White House spokesman Sean Spicer has continued to mount PowerPoint presentations with video from the North Korean invasion in 1950 for the past week to prove that the order was justified.

On a lighter and more humanistic note, Breitbart News reported yesterday that Marvin Gaye’s Motown classic “Let’s Get It On” has been replaced as Trump’s favorite song. According to the Breitbart insider, Trump has adopted Mel Brooks’s classic “Springtime for Hitler” as his new and inspirational mantra. According to the source, an elite Secret Service choir has been formed to serenade Trump, Steve Bannon, and Sean “Sphincter” (his moniker in college) Spicer with the song during informal Oval Office luncheons. 

On a more somber note for American citizens, we might ask:

Is Trump a liar?

Is Trump delusional?

Is Trump stark raving bonkers?

Is Trump all three of the above?

BRIAN POPE

The Extra Mile

Springs

March 26, 2017

To the Editor:

A wise old owl sat on an oak branch. The more he saw the less he spoke. The less he spoke the more he saw. Why can’t the Congress of the United States take a lesson from that wise old bird? Invest a few moments in thinking — it will pay good interest.

When we can’t control what’s happening, we must challenge ourselves to control the way we respond to what’s happening. That’s where, as citizens, our power is. Sometimes life will test you, but remember as you walk up that mountain, your legs will get stronger. The wise don’t expect to find life worth living; they make it that way.

Ideas are a dime a dozen. People who put them into action are priceless. You are always free to choose, but you are not free from the consequences of your choice. Go the extra mile — it’s never crowded. The three Cs of life are choices, chances, and change. You must make the choice to take a chance if you want anything to change in your life. 

Truth passes through stages. First it is ridiculed, second it is violently opposed, and third it is accepted as self-evident. The best way to predict the future is create it. Don’t take a fence or wall down till you know the reason it was put up. Good decisions come from experience, and experience comes from bad decisions.

Freedom without boundaries is like a river without banks. It is to take liberty for granted. Any community that provides safe haven for illegal aliens willfully can endanger the lives of its residents.

Certain groups that get together, such as ethnic groups, immigration lawyers, and religious groups, along with corporate America and others who have special interest in maintaining the status quo, are a major concern to the process of legal immigration.

A quote from Barack Obama on “Larry King Live,” Oct. 19, : “I think the American people have a generous instinct. They understand that we’re a nation of immigrants. But if those people are going to live in this country, they have to be put on a pathway to citizenship that involves them paying a fine, making sure they are on the back of the line, and not cutting in front of people who applied legally to come into the country.” (In other words, legal immigration.) 

So in those 10 years between Oct. 19, 2006, and Jan. 21, 2017, how did that work out? What did he do besides go on vacation and bow to foreign leaders?

TOM BYRNE

Abe Lincoln Moment

New York

March 25, 2017

To the Editor:

At some point, the truth does matter. So said Abraham Lincoln, when he declared, “You can fool all of the people some of the time, and some of the people all of the time, but . . . you can’t fool all of the people all of the time.”

On March 4, President Trump accused President Obama of committing a very serious crime. “Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my ‘wires tapped’ in Trump Tower just before the ictory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism! Is it legal for a sitting President to be ‘wire tapping’ a race for president prior to an election? Turned down by court earlier. A new low! I’d bet a good lawyer could make a great case out of the fact that President Obama was tapping my phones in October, just prior to Election!”

While some of his supporters have attempted to smoke-bomb his statement, Trump’s tweet was very clear and specific. It was also a lie.

The Justice Department, F.B.I, N.S.A., C.I.A., and congressional leaders from both parties all have confirmed that Trump’s charge is totally false and without any evidence. What most people call a lie. 

Donald Trump has told many lies big and small in his business career and on his way to the White House. He has scammed applicants to Trump University. You name it, he has lied about it. Lying comes as naturally to him as a three-point shot to Stephen Curry. So — what is so special about this one?

At some point, all liars, like Trump, reach that Abraham Lincoln moment. This, my friends, is the liar’s tipping point of no return. It is the point where, except for the loyal Trump lunatic fringe, no rational person can and should believe a word that Trump says. The flashing sign now reads: Beware! The POTUS is a pathological liar. Believe at your own risk. 

So what are the consequences of having a president who is a pathological liar? For starters, we have your boy-who-cried-wolf situation. “Hey! North Korea just launched a nuclear missile at us.” Yeah, right, Donald. 

History has taught us the bigger the stakes, the more we need a credible president. Think about if Trump had been president instead of Kennedy during the Cuban missile crisis.

Is it not ironic that Trump accused Obama of McCarthyism? There was a pivotal moment in the McCarthy hearings when Joe McCarthy, a fellow pathological liar, was confronted by Joe Welch, who asked him, “Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last? Have you left no sense of decency?”

President Trump, as Abraham Lincoln said, the truth does matter. The American people need to know if their president is a liar. With this lie, you have answered this question. Your answer is that you are willing to tell any lie that may seem to serve your purpose, no matter the harm to others, or the country, for that matter. You have finally reached your Abe Lincoln moment. 

JAY McGLYNN

Nothing but the Best

Hampton Bays

March 22, 2017

Dear Sir, 

What a shame how the media and the low information voters are beating up on President Trump.

It seems to me when Clinton was in office, with all his philandering he did not receive the demonstrations, bad press, and the mean attitudes that are being displayed to President Trump. It certainly goes beyond saying that Obama got away with so much.

Being so lucky to live in New York City during the winter, I would have to be crazy to wear a cap with the saying “Make America Great Again.” What a sad commentary I have to feel that way. Who could say President Trump does not have a great work ethic?

I feel President Trump wants nothing but the best for our country and the liberal intellectuals are going crazy as is Barbra Streisand, who is getting fat because Trump is president. Maybe her fat face will improve her ugly face.

Oh well, that’s enough for me this time. May God bless President Trump and his beautiful family.

Yours truly,

JOHN PAGAC

Whippee Candidates

Amagansett

March 23, 2017

Dear David, 

There are employers in the Town of East Hampton who are not paying their service providers, claiming that if the employee protests, the employer will report them to immigration.

For years I have advocated for the revival of the enforcement position of East Hampton Town Common Whipper. I would screen for the job, but my flogging arm is not what it used to be. We now turn to legal services of East End for opportunity, including who “visited” a job site today.

I am hoping that The East Hampton Star will consider a new column: “The common whipper’s current whippee candidates list.” I think it might give some miscreants pause. 

All good things, 

DIANA WALKER

The Justice’s Voice

East Hampton

March 26, 2017

To the Editor:

The nomination of Neil Gorsuch is a multilayered, complicated situation. The essential question that everyone needs to ask is whether a president who is under investigation for what could amount to treason and prison should be in a position to nominate a judge for the Supreme Court?

 First and least significant is that he is one more Harvard elitist like all the other judges on the Supreme Court. It’s like we can’t have a justice from any place else except Harvard. Yet Harvard is not perfect. Witness Clarence Thomas, who has never written a lead opinion and is perhaps the only person of color in the country who would have voted in favor of ending the Voting Rights Act.

Second is the conundrum of the Republican Party refusing to give the Obama nominee Merrick Garland a hearing. Did they break the system? Will all new justices be filibustered because of their behavior? Will the filibuster rule have to be eliminated? Refusing to give Garland a hearing disrespected President Obama (adding a racial component to the issue), the process to sustain the efficacy of the court, and the American people’s right to have a justice who represented their interests. Mr. Gorsuch will probably spend 30 years on the court, and the American people, deprived of a moderate voice, got instead a conservative one. Essentially, they scammed the Democratic process which they were elected to uphold.

The importance of the justice’s voice is exceptionally critical to our democracy. Gorsuch will probably not be as racist and homophobic as Scalia, but he will sustain a conservative bent to the court’s interpretations that has existed for 25 years. Half the country does not agree with this interpretation, and their voices will be muted by a scammed system.

Third, there are significant questions about Mr. Trump’s capacity to choose an appropriate justice. His behavior during his first two months in office has indicated a psychotic and unhinged character, so much so that it is difficult to imagine that he could chose a justice who would be close to acceptable. The president’s reaction to the failed health care bill (“I’ll just let the Obamacare fall apart on its own”) says it all. Almost every person he has brought into the government has been unprepared, incompetent, or uninterested in their jobs. The head of the E.P.A. hates the E.P.A. The education head is opposed to public education. The head of the Labor Department is against the minimum wage. Add in the Flynns and others, and it is an ensemble better suited for a medicine show than running a country. Mostly billionaires.

Fourth, Mr. Gorsuch represents what is essentially aberrant and distorting to the essential logic of any democracy. He is predictable, and thus irrelevant, because predictability is the determination of relevance. Knowing how he will vote, whether he is conservative or liberal, marginalizes his value and renders him ineffective. 

Two votes by Scalia, one the Voting Rights Act and the other Citizens United, rendered every opinion he had written to the garbage pail. His betrayal of the country on those two issues, which are the most blatant betrayal of our democracy, will certainly send any God-fearing man directly to the underworld.

The importance of this nomination can’t be underscored. The future of our country lies in the balance. Can we put the fate of the country in the hands of an unhinged pathological liar who is under investigation, or should we wait until the investigations are over and give the president a chance to show us that there is more to him than meets a very jaundiced eye? 

NEIL HAUSIG

Wild Ghost Chase

Springs

March 25, 2017

To the Editor:

Why this phobia about Russia? Why this hysteria and fear of Putin? Why not do a reality check and discover that the cold war is over? The Communist Manifesto is gone, dead, buried under the rubble of the Berlin Wall. (Mr. Gorbachev, take down this wall. Thank you, President Reagan.) 

Check further and find that Marx, Lenin, and Stalin are nothing but skeletons in their graves. I dare anyone to find a statue or memorial for any of those delusional clowns in Europe or any other place. 

What are these panic-stricken hordes afraid of? That the Russian Putin will destabilize or overthrow our existing U.S.A. totalitarian socialist-communist police state and replace it with a free-enterprise Democratic government — the same one that they, the Russians, are currently wrestling with? Continue reality and be honest. He did not win, you lost. You screwed up. About time you gave up this futile wild ghost chase. Not a single vote was diverted by the accused Russian shenanigans, none. Today’s Russia is not a threat, not by a long shot. The Russians have the potential to become our ally, and a critical one.

In some ways they are already. Check their geographical and strategic locations. On top (north) of threatening North Korea, bordering troublesome China, and also visible from Sarah Palin’s window. Today’s Russians should be viewed as the “new kids on the block” — new to our more than 220 years of freedoms and democracies. They deserve a break, understanding, and guidance. They only have 28 years and 9 months of democratic experience. Twenty-eight years from the collapse of the Soviet Union, Nov. 9, 1989, and nine months of the democratic provisional government of Kerensky after the tsar’s abdication (March 1917 until the Bolshevik revolution, October 1917). That is all. 

Putin? Poor Putin — a carryover from the Soviet era, trained via the K.G.B., gulags, police state, etc., thrust into an arena crowded with hundreds-of-years-old democracies?! Confusing, to say the least.

For the love and survival of our country, learn and prepare for the next round.

EDWARD A. WAGSCHAL