Thanks for protecting

our natural resources

Regarding the Jan. 18 editorial, "Horseshoe crabs/Keep moratorium," and the Jan. 22 editorial, "Breaking up the DEP/Protection vs. profit," about bills to move the state Division of Fish, Game and Wildlife and the state Forestry Service out of the Department of Environmental Protection and into the Department of Agriculture:

Thank you for your insight and wisdom regarding the implications of these pieces of radical legislation. All of these proposed bills are designed to separate the public majority from its public-trust resources and give them away to minority, for-profit special interests.

While farmers pay for their land and therefore acquire private-property rights and the right to farm and make personal profits, wildlife and natural resources are owned by no one and everyone, to be held in trust by government for the benefit of present and future generations. This means that individual citizens and corporations do not own the ocean or the wild fish and other species in it, and that harvesting the public's fish is not their God-given right.

And just as the purchase of a driver's license does not give you ownership of the public roads, the purchase of a fishing license does not give you ownership of the ocean or the fish.

All people alive today are the beneficiaries of our natural resources, and many people derive great benefit and value from keeping these resources alive, rather than catching them and killing them and selling them for money.

The public needs to speak up and oppose those elected officials who would squander our finite and dwindling natural resources and give them away to special interests. We must support those elected officials with the wisdom and courage to employ conservation and sustainability to safeguard the public's long-term benefit.

Teddy Roosevelt had it right back in 1916 when he said, "Our duty to the whole, including the unborn generations, bids us to restrain an unprincipled present-day minority from wasting the heritage of these unborn generations."

FRED AKERS

Administrator

Great Egg Harbor River Council

Newtonville

FEMA is hurting

more than helping

The Federal Emergency Management Agency seems intent on causing more damage than the actual storm.

The federal government has no problem subsidizing just about everything under the sun, but it insists that the National Flood Insurance Program run by FEMA be self-sustaining. FEMA plans to get it there by removing federal flood-insurance premium subsidies and allowing rates to increase.

And as many locals have learned, the help FEMA does offer is meager compared to the costs to rebuild to FEMA's radical new standards.

Since it is FEMA's rules that will in the end devastate parts of our town and our region financially, as costs increase, homes devalue and residents flee, why shouldn't the federal government return some of the vast sums our region sends to Washington to partially subsidize flood-insurance premiums or to help people rebuild or raise their homes?

We shared the risk all of these years through our flood-insurance premiums. Why is it now, when so many are in need, that the rules are changed?

New Jersey receives less in federal funding back for every dollar it sends to Washington than most, if not all, other states.

FEMA needs to take a more realistic look at its response to the storm and the crisis its current course will create.

JOHN PIATT

Ventnor

Menendez story

typical for Democrats

Regarding the Jan. 31 story, "Menendez denies paying for sex":

Why is it that Democrats like U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez are all for stiffing working people with higher taxes while enjoying close relationships with rich doctors who have private planes and owe the Internal Revenue Service $11 million?

Menendez's denials that he had sex with underage prostitutes in the Dominican Republic after flying there on his doctor friend's plane suggest that where there is smoke there is fire. Even the liberal Miami Herald is reporting this story, because it does not want to look like the rest of the liberal media who are virtually ignoring this potential scandal.

We are tired of seeing Republicans always getting front-page headline coverage on their scandals while Democrats get a virtual pass.

TONY DeANGELIS

Villas

Boardwalk Ambassadors

doing great job in A.C.

Congratulations to the team of Boardwalk Ambassadors and their leadership. They are all doing an excellent job of keeping Atlantic City clean and safe, especially the areas of Pacific Avenue near Florida, Texas and Bellevue avenues. It is better now than the past 30 years.

It is nice to see families, casino workers and tourists walking about without having to see people hanging on corners or in front of local stores. The ambassadors are polite, informative and, of course, easy to spot in their colorful outfits. What a wonderful idea someone had to create jobs and do some good for the city. He or she should be proud. Keep up the good work.

LEON LAMAR

Atlantic City