2003-03-26 / Editorials

Boulevard Of Death

Boulevard Of Death ToThe Editor:

ToThe Editor:

Tuesday at 9:30 a.m. I was in my car driving toward the city on Queens Boulevard. To my amazement there was an elderly man, with a red and white striped cane, crossing against the light in Forest Hills.The police car that was alongside me didn’t do anything about it either.

A little farther down the Boulevard at the Sears store in Rego Park there were five young people, and an elderly couple just past them on the other side of the intersection, crossing against the light.

Since I was traveling the speed limit, had traffic bearing down behind me and the lights were in my favor I gave them a blast of my horn. They did not walk any faster. Instead they flipped me the finger, one even jumped back into traffic.

I guess some of the pedestrians that cross Queens Boulevard have a death wish or they expect to make a great deal of money with their law suits.

Name Withheld OnRequest

Kew Gardens Hills

NoRx Drug Worries

ToThe Editor:

Why are seniors living in New York state worried about a federal Medicare prescription plan?None of the plans offered so far by both parties are at all acceptable.InNew York those truly in need have Medicaid, which covers most prescriptionsThose in the mid-income group have EPIC, which is a big help. All states should implement such a plan. My husband and I spend close to $4,000 a year on our medications.We do not have a drug plan and while we are not wealthy, neither do we have to do without food on the table. Take a look and figure out the average age of customers sitting in front of the one-armed bandits’ at Atlantic City on weekdays.An eye-opener.

If you really want something done about prices get after the government to crack down on the pharmaceutical companies like Canada did. Whoever heard of so many print and on-air commercials for various drugs 10 or 15 years ago?This is a large expense and is not necessary.

C.Mentberger

Astoria

Pans Job Drain

To The Editor:

Millions of United States jobs as well as thousands of independent businesses face extinction under the policies that favor importing cheap labor and exporting production.

Many of our corporate giants such as DellComputer Corp., Microsoft, Boeing and General Electric are now doing business inChina, Russia and India.If the companies stay in the United States [then] alien workers come here on a special visa program where they are paid less than their American counterparts.We are losing many jobs and this will lead to the decline of America’s production capability and the jobs that are the bedrock of the American middle class.

We must let Congress know that they must abolish the H-1B and L1 visa programs, drastically reduce all other levels of immigration and insist on credible Immigration and Naturalization Services (INS) and Border Patrol enforcement levels. It also means defeating all proposals to grant yet another amnesty to millions of illegal aliens who have come to the United States since the last amnesty.

We must also urge Congress to cut federal funding to many agencies and programs providing loans, credits, subsidies and loan guarantees to U.S. corporations to move to foreign countries.

We are all in danger of losing our jobs if these destructive policies continue.

Very truly yours,

Janet McCarthy

Flushing

Wants Rx Drug Benefit

A copy of the following letter was received by the Gazette.

The Honorable Gary Ackerman

United States Congress, Room 2243

Rayburn Office BUilding

Washington, DC20515

Dear Congressmember Ackerman:

I am writing to you as a constituent and as a representative of thousands of voters to urge you to use your considerable influence to end the partisan gridlock preventing passage of a Medicare PrescriptionDrug Benefit.

I am also asking you to take the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP)Rx Pledge. AARPhas asked members of Congress and other federally elected officials to pledge to work with AARP to enact a prescription drug benefit this year.Essentially, AARP’s Rx pledge requires that Congress must finally match results with promises and add a full, comprehensive prescription drug benefit within the Medicare program.

AARP’s Medicare PrescriptionDrug Benefit legislative proposal would require that:

1)All Medicare beneficiaries have access to a stable prescription drug benefit on a voluntary basis.

2) Affordable prices will be the rule, not the exception.

3) Reasonable premiums, deductibles and copayments will apply to everyone.

4)Prescription coverage will leave no individual with extraordinary out-of-pocket costs.

5) Reductions on soaring drug costs will keep the program affordable and help will be provided for low-income individuals with guaranteed benefits for all who need them.

A number of New York Congressmembers have taken the pledge, including Congressmembers Israel,Crowley,Nadler and Maloney.I did not find your name on AARP’s list of pledge takers.Perhaps this is merely an oversight. Please lend your potentially considerable support to this important legislative relief for our senior citizens.

The time is ripe for this important reform.The President [George W.Bush] said in his State of the Union Address that, "Medicare is a binding commitment of a caring society."He has committed to a $400 billion overhaul of the system. I understand that the minority in Congress wants to fight for an additional $500 million to allocate towards this important program.

By all means, fight for New York’s Senior Citizens’ fair share of this package, but please take quick and appropriate action to get our senior citizens the PrescriptionDrug Benefit they need and deserve. Please take the AARPRx pledge and please don’t let partisan gridlock shortchange our seniors.

Sincerely,

Phil Ragusa

Republican State Committee

26th Assembly District

Northeast Queens

Unfair Fare Hike

To The Editor:

How dismayed and disappointed I am upon hearing that the MTABoard had voted for the fare increase.

I am indignant at this news because again, the budget is being balanced at the expense of the 7 million people who have to use the subways and buses to get to work, school, etc.

Why was our governor [not] heard from?

It seems that only at election time, our leaders make idle promises and after they are elected, neglect us voters.

Well, at the ballot box, we can exert our power of the ballot and elect leaders of our city, state and nation who will be more mindful of our needs.

In addition, I was angered when I learned that the subway station at Union Turnpike, which is near a rehab center for the visually impaired will have a token booth closed. The token booth is the eyes for these people who are learning how to travel with limited or no sight.

I believe that there must have been other ways of balancing the budgetary problem that the MTAhad. Where is the audit that was to occur concerning their books’ validity and accuracy?

Cynthia Groopman

Long Island City


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