‘No place for hate’ and more

Letters to the editor March 11 to 17

Posted 3/10/21

Letters to the editor March 11 to 17

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‘No place for hate’ and more

Letters to the editor March 11 to 17

Posted

‘No place for hate’

The Delaware Valley School District (DVSD) is no place for hate. Nor is our school board. In light of the inflammatory hate speech targeting LGBTQ people (including transgender PA State Health Director Levine) expressed by DVSD School Board Director Dawn Bukaj in open online forums including Facebook, I’m appealing to you, her peers on the school board, and to you, superintendent John Bell, to demand a public apology as well as Bukaj’s immediate resignation.

To openly shame students and staff into the shadows based on gender identity in public forums for the world to read (and most insensitively, for our LGBTQ neighbors, friends and youth to read) is not simply appalling; it also contradicts state guidelines, ethical standards adopted by our district condemning this specific bias and common decency. The DVSD School Board has a responsibility to uphold these standards; to protect the health, wellbeing and dignity of our most marginalized community members; and to provide much-needed examples of inclusion and tolerance through its leadership.

While Dawn Bukaj may reserve her right to free speech, your collective voice as one of Pike County’s most critical elected bodies will have the final say on how her words resonate in our community.

I expect your prompt action to make right on this matter. Our kids are watching.

Amy Eisenberg
Milford, PA

Expand VA COVID-19 vaccinations to all veterans

At no personal cost or income restriction, all civilians and veterans alike are eligible to receive COVID-19 vaccinations administered by state governments. The current distribution crisis caused by a vaccine supply shortage is compounded by elusive state protocols mandating that individuals obtain tortuous inoculation appointments.

Veterans, however, benefit from a second, additional Veterans-Affairs (VA)-only pathway to receive the vaccine. Having a direct federal supply, Castle Point VA Hospital, for example, provides a fantastic no-wait, walk-in inoculation service. However, VA red tape also requires the veteran first to qualify for, and then to enroll in, the full VA Health Treatment Plan, a similar condition not required of civilians or of veterans who are inoculated at state vaccination sites.

Confoundingly, on March 17, 2015, the U.S. Congress created an additional enrollment barrier by enacting an income-limited “means test” for VA Health Plan eligibility that now excludes many senior veterans, especially those retired from union and civil service careers. That VA Health Plan exclusion then also excludes those veterans from the VA COVID-19 vaccination program, which sabotages the primary goal to protect all veterans from COVID-19.

To maximize and expedite the VA COVID-19 inoculation of all veterans, please contact all local, state and federal officials to cause the immediate separation of the preventive VA COVID-19 vaccination program from the VA Health Treatment Plan and its egregious income-­based vaccination restrictions. That disconnection may be accom­plished either: 1) by authority of VA officials, if possible;
or, 2) by presidential executive order; or, 3) by Congressional legislation.

Jurgen Wekerle
Walden, NY

‘When Money Becomes King’

(Tom Petty, RIP.)

It seems to be the case in Wayne County, as the commissioners have decided to go pro-fracking. I wonder if they have allowed or will allow fracking on their properties?

Ask the people in Susquehanna County how they feel about fracking: fire water coming out of their faucets, contaminated wells.

It is my understanding that, even if a landowner doesn’t allow fracking, his property can be affected as this material moves around underground where it chooses.

And [I suppose] we will build a pipeline to get it to where it can be shipped overseas to be sold back to us at exorbitant prices.

And what about damage to the environment? I am almost 80 years old, so I don’t have to be too concerned about it. But I am concerned about my children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Isn’t anybody else?

But wait, is there a shortage of propane? A man goes to a local dealer to get his tanks filled; a “gentleman” who is filling another customer’s tank starts screaming and waving his arms at him, refusing to fill them. This was a regular customer. Word gets around!

Coral A. Ripple
Equinunk, PA

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