Voice of the People, June 19, 2013 - pressofAtlanticCity.com: Voice Of The People

Voice of the People, June 19, 2013 - pressofAtlanticCity.com: Voice Of The People

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Voice of the People, June 19, 2013

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Posted: Wednesday, June 19, 2013 12:01 am

A.C. needs stronger law

on derelict buildings

Atlantic City has an ordinance that requires owners of deteriorating buildings to repair or demolish them. This is something that Atlantic City desperately needs - just look around and judge for yourself.

The Department of Licensing & Inspections has indeed cited countless properties. However, properties in my neighborhood that were cited more than two years ago and posted in the legal ads still look the same as they did then. If the city has no effective means to demolish these buildings or fine these property owners, the ordinance is worthless, along with all the legal notifications posted in The Press.

ROCCO PEPINO

Atlantic City

Logging bill creates

'open season' on forests

I am puzzled how A2837/S1085, which will open up state forests to logging, can be so close to becoming law. We have to kill this forest-chewing bill - again.

Clearly this retread, rehashed, already-dumped bill will accomplish a familiar goal - benefit a few individuals who want to make money - and will cost the people who live in New Jersey their natural resources.

There is no public interest in or clamor for this bill, and it has generated colossal opposition. Does that mean anything? The bill would create an "open season" on our forests.

Contact those colorful and ever inventive people who work for you - your state legislators - and let them know you oppose this measure.

JEFF SICKLES

Eatontown

We must not tolerate

NSA spying on Americans

Rather than being angry, a majority of Americans are apparently OK with the government monitoring their email and phone calls to protect against a terrorist attack. I'm not one of them.

First, your chances of being killed by a texting driver are probably 100 times greater than being killed by a terrorist.

Second, who knows if this trillion-dollar security program actually works. Even with a heads-up from the Russians, this technology was unable to stop the Boston Marathon attack.

Next, we're told by the president and his security establishment that our calls are not being monitored. But that's true only until they decide to start listening. Three months ago, James Clapper, director of national intelligence, was asked in a Senate hearing if any type of data was being gathered on millions of Americans, and he denied it. There's no way to categorize that answer other than a lie.

We simply can't believe the executive branch of our government anymore. And to trust a spineless, bought-off Congress to provide oversight is more than foolish.

Right now, the only credible information on what our security apparatus is doing comes from whistle-blowers. If it weren't for brave souls like Daniel Ellsberg, Thomas Drake, Bradley Manning and Edward Snowden, we wouldn't have a clue about how closely our lives are scrutinized.

A functioning democracy can only exist when the citizens are informed about what their government does. Just sitting back and saying "I trust the government" is not good citizenship. And the willingness to forfeit hard-won constitutional rights for the illusion of safety is even worse.

MAC McCARTHY

Ocean City

Will someone remove

'Road Work' signs?

Can anyone tell me who can remove the 12-foot-tall florescent "Road Work" signs from in front of my home on South English Creek Road in Pomona? They were erected for the widening of the Route 30 and Pomona Road intersection, which was completed a year ago.

I started with Galloway Township, which referred me to Atlantic County, which in turn referred me to the state. Weeks later, I'm still looking at these signs every time I walk out my door.

Maybe the contractor who put them up will read this and finally realize what happened to those signs he's been looking for. They must be worth something and can be used on another project.

DAVEY YOUNG

Pomona

What did LoBiondo

know about spying?

I understand the vital role that intelligence plays in keeping Americans safe from terrorism at home and abroad. However, I am gravely concerned by the federal government seizing and storing the personal records of millions of law-abiding citizens. These efforts violate basic principles of privacy and greatly undermine the Fourth Amendment.

As a member of the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Frank LoBiondo, R-2nd, should tell us if he learned about the breadth of this program from news reports, or if he was aware of this activity prior to its public disclosure. I, for one, expect members of Congress to protect the American people from such abuses of authority.

MIKE ASSAD

Absecon

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