Lower picked 9/11
for back-to-school night
On Sept. 11, instead of spending my time at a 9/11 remembrance service as my family has done the past 10 years, I was taken away. The administrators at the Lower Township Elementary School District scheduled back-to-school night for that day - a day to reflect on the nearly 3,000 lives lost in 2001.
I try to teach my children to pay respect to those who have made the sacrifices stemming from that day we pledged to never forget, a day that we have now dedicated to remembrance for those who have sacrificed. But the school district apparently chose not to show that respect.
Whoever is responsible for this decision should be deeply ashamed.
We lost many people on this day and continue to lose people almost daily due to their exposure to deadly soot at Ground Zero. Then there are the thousands of troops whom we have lost protecting us since.
"Never forget" should be more than just words - it should be a true display of respect. It is my opinion that some Lower Township school officials have forgotten.
MICHAEL E. ECK
Over his 18 years in Congress, Rep. Frank LoBiondo, R-2nd, has built himself a reputation as a champion of veterans rights and has taken full advantage of every photo opportunity with veterans that he could. But if you examine his voting record on veterans issues, you will find a complete lack of concern for the men and women who have put everything on the line to serve our country.
LoBiondo voted against increasing combat pay for our troops overseas, but his shameful disregard for our servicemen and women doesn't end there. He has consistently voted along party lines with his fellow Republicans against veterans' interests.
Veterans are the fastest-growing segment of the unemployed, with a higher unemployment rate than the national average. Thousands of veterans are also homeless. But LoBiondo voted to slash funding to programs that aid homeless veterans by $75 million.
He also voted against funding for the Defense Department's Yellow Ribbon Program, which assists veterans and their families with reintegration after their active service ends. He voted against funding for veterans and active-duty armed forces members to refinance their homes under the Federal Housing Administration Refinancing Program. Most shocking of all, however, he voted against increasing funds for veterans' medical services for post-traumatic stress disorder and suicide prevention.
LoBiondo's record on veterans' issues is deplorable. Perhaps he needs to be reminded of our moral obligation to care for those who have made such a tremendous sacrifice on our behalf.
Veterans deserve better than a representative who cares about them only when the media are present. Veterans and their families would be best served by voting for Cassandra Shober for Congress this November.
Election does turn
on economists' views
The writer of the Sept. 10 letter, "Election is really about Hayek versus Keynes," really put things into perspective. I never thought that the pros and cons of the upcoming election could be summed up in such simple terms. But distinguishing between Mitt Romney and Barack Obama in terms of economists Freidrich Hayek and John Maynard Keynes indicates precisely why the 2012 election is pivotal.
Do we continue down the path to European socialism (Keynes) or revert back to our founders' principles of personal responsibility (Hayek). Very interesting analysis.
won't help nation
I am a retired senior citizen and a Vietnam-era veteran of the U.S. Air Force living on Social Security and a small N.J. state employee pension. No one seems to understand why President Barack Obama has a high likability factor -especially with the younger generation. The answer is that the majority of voters in this 20-30 age group are not concerned or paying attention to the national debt, our horrible economic situation, Social Security or Medicare because they have many years before these factors become a major problem in their lives.
They relate to Obama because he seems like someone who would be coming to their house to watch football and have wings and beer on Sunday afternoon. What they fail to realize is that liking him means nothing and will not solve the country's problems, many of which he has caused or ignored.
I feel he has disrespected so much of what this country stands for and was founded on that he does not deserve to be re-elected. I did not vote for him because I did not believe what he promised and said he was going to do. Has he done anything to better my life or situation? My taxes have gone up along with gasoline and food costs. "Hope and change" came and went, leaving us with despair and distraction.
Democrats are the party
that puts people first
Both political parties agree that increasing employment opportunity is necessary. Private-sector and public-sector jobs are needed, although Republicans seem to speak almost wholly of private-sector work.
But much of the work society needs in order to be civil, safe and progressive is done by public-sector workers - public health, teaching and social work. And what is more important than police and firefighting? State budgets, facing the end of the federal stimulus, have been unable to keep up with population growth; perhaps 500,000 jobs should have been added in these areas alone. Fiscal aid to states and local governments would be a benefit to the whole community. The interconnectedness of federal, state and local governments should be supported, not diminished.
Austerity in state and local budgets, some analysts say, may have reduced employment by 2 million jobs. Depressed spending on local and state levels causes the economy to suffer also. Rescuing industries is more dramatic than improving social services, but they, too, need rescuing.
It is the Democratic Party that understands, supports and works toward achieving healthy and effective interconnectedness. As Cassandra Shober, the Democratic candidate in the 2nd Congressional District, says: "It's time for the people of New Jersey's 2nd Congressional District to have a representative who puts people first."
NORMAN K. BOSLEY
Long Beach Township