In response to “Montclair parent: Let’s get kids back in the classroom,” the recent op-ed by Dr. Lauren Brucia, I would like add my own thoughts resulting from almost 40 years of teaching in elementary schools.
I taught in the inner-city in a major New Jersey district, and the newest building I was assigned to was at least 40 years old. It showed all of those years through breakdown after breakdown in windows, heating and almost every system that provided air transfer. In addition, the classrooms were always overcrowded.
As a pediatrician, Brucia must know that children living in cities have less opportunity that many suburban children enjoy. Montclair, site of recent clashes over reopening dates between the administration and the teachers’ union, is not Newark or Jersey City, but it is a densely populated area. This could result in COVID-19 infection rates greater than in less populated areas if buildings are reopened without proper safeguards
There is no contract that requires teachers to lay down their very lives in order to satisfy a parent’s work schedule. We really don’t know what the actual result will be if we open schools now. I believe the opinion of the most experienced teachers is that, without question, someone will contract this virus, bring it into the classroom — and you can guess the result.
The Montclair Education Association needs to be on board with any decision to open schools. If they’re not, no school should open and likely won’t.
James K. Aumack, Cape May
Tale was tall about Texas blackouts
In response to Stephen Flatow’s recent letter, “Texas’ power woes could happen here,” the writer seems to get his information only from conservative media outlets.
The main reason that Texas’ wind turbines, as well as its fossil-fuel electricity generating plants, failed in the extreme cold weather was that state’s failure to insulate and winterize the equipment. Note that such facilities in other parts of the country are able to operate in extreme cold weather.
In addition, if the writer wants a new nuclear plant to be built in New Jersey, he should recommend his own town of Long Branch as the site.
Richard O’Reilly, North Brunswick
Don’t make excuses for Springsteen
It was amazing to me to see columns, op-eds and letters in the Star-Ledger stating that Bruce Springsteen was “set up” for his driving-while-intoxicated arrest in Sandy Hook.
When I last checked, drinking tequila in restricted sections of the Gateway National Recreation Area was against the law. When Springsteen was offered a drink, all he had to say was, “No.”
Why is it, when a popular celebrity is caught breaking the law, their minions rush to their defense?
Maybe Springsteen should have stayed in the Midwest, riding around in his Jeep and telling everyone how to reunite our country.
Don Montefusco, Maplewood
Abortion violates basic human right
Katharine Kahn’s recent letter, “Pass abortion-law expansion now,” seemed very reasonable and professionally prepared, perhaps a bit too much like something Planned Parenthood would distribute.
The letter stressed abortion rights, and urged passage of thew Reproductive Freedom Act by the state Legislature, in the event that the U.S. Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision is overturned.
The reason we are “still embattled” over abortion — to use Kahn’s words — is that it violates a very fundamental human right. It is argued that the being in the womb is not a person until the state grants that status at birth but science shows us that the being is human nonetheless. I will continue to fight for that human life and the guaranteed right to life.
Gov. Phil Murphy and many other politicians will be held accountable if they ram through this ruthless proposed law.
Bill Dowling, Woodbridge
Thank you for your (COVID-19) service
Dealing with the COVID-19 virus threat and trying to get the vaccine has been extremely difficult and frustrating for most of us. Trying to register on any of the vaccine websites has been near impossible, and it seems like we are all competing against each other to get appointments. If you have been attempting to get a vaccine appointment, you know what I mean.
The one positive thing we encountered in our journey to finally get vaccinated was our interaction with the men and women of the New Jersey National Guard who staffed the Meadowlands Vaccination mega-site.
They were pleasant, caring, helpful and professional. We were extremely proud of their unselfish service.
Carl F. Young, Clark
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