Atheist billboard protected by First Amendment

To the editor,

Your story, “Sign Of The Times” about the atheist billboard was disappointing (Op-ed, March 22).

This is sad for those who cherish free speech. Perhaps some have forgotten about the Bill of Rights and the First Amendment. Advertising is a multi-billion dollar business helping fuel our free enterprise economy. If you don’t like the ad, don’t buy the product. Advertisers will get the message.

We are all bombarded on a daily basis with sexually or politically provocative advertising. This is life when you live in a free and open society. The ad was no more offensive to me than Wodka Vodka’s “Escort Quality, Hooker Pricing” or, as a member of the Jewish faith, “Christmas Quality, Hanukkah Pricing.”

Those on the political left who practice political correctness to the extreme are no different from their counterparts — the moral majority thought police on the extreme political right. Both groups promote censorship and intolerance to those whose divergent viewpoints differ from their own narrow-minded ideological views. This is disappointing to people who cherish freedom of speech and intellectual discourse on issues of the day, no matter how controversial.

Both sides need a refresher course on the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, including the First Amendment which protects freedom of speech. Why was the American Civil Liberties Union missing in action?

We are fortunate to be living in one of the few free societies left in the world today. Freedom of speech, including ideas expressed in billboards paid for by business, private citizens or organizations, is usually cherished here, not trampled on.

Larry Penner

Great Neck, N.Y.

Unfair Stan

To the editor,

Stanley Gershbein chooses to criticize the Georgetown law student who testified before Congress on women’s health issues (“Stand’s tidbits keep you thinking,” It’s Only My Opinion, March 22).
He states that she is neither a “slut” nor a “prostitute,” but that she wants you and I to pay for her extracurricular activities. Well we all know where those lines came from.

Besides calling this woman a “slut” and a “prostitute,” Rush Limbaugh repeatedly made the point on his radio show that this woman was apparently having so much sex that she couldn’t afford to pay for the birth control, and thus wanted you and me to pay for it for her.

This woman didn’t testify before Congress about that. She actually spoke about the fact that a significant number of women in this country need to use birth control pills for purely medical reasons, including to regulate extremely heavy periods and many other medical conditions, having nothing at all to do with contraception. She was concerned with whether health insurance would pay for such usage of these pills for such conditions.

She related the story of a woman she knew from Georgetown University, a Catholic school, whose health plan refused to pay for these pills for regulation of a purely medical condition, having nothing to do with birth control. This woman was unable to pay for these pills and, as a result, had to have an ovary removed.

Instead of calling her a liar at the end of that segment of his article, it would be much better if Stanley Gershbein bothered to do some research, rather than listen to the despicable Rush Limbaugh as his source of information.

Bothering to find out what the truth really is — now that’s fair and balanced!

Burt Gass

Marine Park

‘Grandfathering’ cats

To the editor,

Are cat owners not aware of the grandfather rule (“Brighton Beach cat lady: I want to keep my 45 kitties!” online, Feb. 24)?

This rule means that even if there is a change in ownership or in an apartment building’s policy, tenants are permitted to keep whatever pet or pets they had from the beginning of their tenancy. Since Barbara Berger had 15 cats when she moved into her apartment, she should be allowed to keep up to 15 of those cats.

I hope that she and the people helping her can be made aware of this rule, so she would have a legal weapon to sue in order to retain her home and the 10 cats she wants to keep. Although Ms. Berger has a very kind heart, she needs to realize that she cannot save every kitty in need or she will end up in an out-of-control situation with more cats than she can care for properly. She also needs to make sure that all her cats are spayed or neutered.

If she wants to extend a helping hand to more animals, she might want to look into working with an organization, such as Best Friends (volunteer.bestfriends.org).

Good luck to her and her kitties.

Sarah Vogel

Sea Gate


To the editor,

And the world again remained silent regarding another atrocity committed against the Jewish people, this time in France. Of course, the French government will try to downplay the incident. After all, they have many Muslims living in their country.

Obviously, these people refuse to assimilate and wish to subject everyone to their beliefs, using violence when they feel it is necessary. Could you imagine if Israel had committed such an atrocity against the Palestinians? We’d be subjected to world-wide condemnation, rallies, marches, demonstrations. The U.N. would have immediately condemned Israel and sanctions would be put against the Jewish state.

The poor excuse of a human being who did this did in fact have Al-Qaeda ties. I refer to the latter as “al-chaleria,” “chaleria” being a Yiddish term for a wild animal.

I don’t see the food co-op in Park Slope angry over this. To them and others, Jewish blood is cheap. It would have been nice for our president to speak out as he correctly did for Tayshon. Ditto to his Republican counterparts.

The nation of Israel lives. Amen.

Ed Greenspan

Sheepshead Bay

Excellent Jo-Jo

To the editor,

One of the reasons I read your paper is Joanna DelBuono (“Not for Nuthin’”). She is an excellent writer and always tells it like it is. I only wish I can write like her.

Thank you Joanna for your article, “Rush puts his foot in his mouth again” (March 15). I am extremely proud to be an Italian American, I was not aware of that idiot’s comment about Italians.

I am waiting for the moment when an Italian American puts him in his place, thank you again and again on your expertise in writing. I enjoyed your article immensely. Keep up the good work.

Maria Demarco

Greenwood Heights

Thanks Shav

To the editor,

Shavana Abruzzo, I wish I had your talent — your words flow.

Fantastic column this week (“There are no apologies in war,” A Britisher’s View, March 23).

Many of my friends were (mentally still are) U.S. Marines. Boy, oh boy, they will love, love this column.

Joan Applepie

Mill Basin

Sanity czar

To the editor,

Just when you think it can’t get anymore ridiculous some birdbrain comes up with the idea for a Fire Department czar for diversity.

Please give me a break! Another salary paid by the taxpayers — for what?

This nonsense has really gone way too far. No one is stopping anyone from taking a test for a city job, but best grade gets the job, case closed. How about a czar for sanity? Yeah a sanity czar!

Peter Orsi

Marine Park

NYPD blues

To the editor,

The stop-and-frisk of 700,000 New York residents, out of a population of eight million, indicates to me that while constitutionally correct, the circumstances in which the NYPD stops citizens are not based on the requirements of a legal search and seizure.

One aspect of this situation not mentioned is that with each stop, our police officers are risking injury to themselves, the suspect and other bystanders.

Nearly 90 percent of those stopped are African Americans. Parents, grandparents and the community will have disdain for the police, and will not cooperate in the investigation of actual crimes.

Allan Feinblum


Stench on bench

To the editor,

Judges don’t have to be saints to show restraint.

It makes little sense when they occasionally tell parties for the prosecution or the defense to “shut up” or get emotionally involved even when they are right.

This can create quite a stench on the bench because judges should be out of sight.

Elliott Abosh

Brighton Beach

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