REPORTER FILE PHOTO
To the Editor:
In Town Hall one often hears of “the common good”, a phrase whose meaning is diluted in proportion to its frequency of use. Life is experienced on the individual level. It is those individuals who make up communities, yes, but no group “feels” anything that does not come through the senses of those who comprise it.
Hence, my goal with the lighting legislation is the same as it is with any law I have a hand in making: To enhance or ensure the quality of the individual life experience of as many people as possible while damaging that of as few as possible. That is all I have been advocating since day one with this thing. The scope of this law should be as focused as the lights that are its subject.
Jefferson said that government is best which governs the least, because its people discipline themselves. To have to make and enforce a law like this is an admission of failure. It comments on us as individuals and as a group. I only hope that, during my time in Town Hall, I will be compelled rarely to do so.
The makers of law are often but brokers of an uneasy peace between two tyrannies: that of the well-intentioned and that of the selfish. As such the question is frequently to do something, or nothing. For my part, I choose to do something when doing nothing favors one tyranny over another. It saddens me, being presented with such a choice, because no law, or book full of them, will solve our ills. We can best improve our reality living by a much older law — be the neighbor you’d like to have.
Councilman, Town of Shelter Island
The good fight
To the Editor:
A reminder for the month of May: As most Islanders are aware May is Mammogram Awareness month and October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. If you are lucky enough to have one of the “100 Pink Ribbons” (donated by Riverhead Building Supply, cut by Mr. Reardon’s shop classes and painted by volunteers), please display it near the street, but only for the months of May and October. We have all worked hard to keep this issue in the forefront. This disease has affected too many families to ever forget.
Here in New York State we are now lucky to have new legislation in place, as of January 2013, thanks to State Senators John Flanagan and Ellen Jaffee, that requires your doctor to inform you if you have “dense breast tissue.”
However it’s still a good idea to ask your doctor about it, and ask for a copy of your mammogram/radiology report to be mailed to you. I recently learned of a local woman who was not told about her dense breast tissue just last month! Amazing how many women still are unaware of breast density!
A woman with dense breast tissue is five times more likely to develop breast cancer. Trying to see cancer in dense tissue is like trying to see a golf ball in a snowstorm. I know my late wife had an 8cm (2.54cm =1 inch) tumor that was unseen by her mammogram. Additional screenings are often needed. Ask your wives, girlfriends and mothers if they have had a mammogram and if they know their density. It’s important in saving lives and for early detection for all women. Let’s all put out our Pink Ribbons in honor of those who have been, and are still, in the fight against breast cancer.
To the Editor:
The Shelter Island 10K Run/5K Community Walk sends its sincere prayers and thoughts to our Boston Athletic Association friends, and the Boston community of athletes, spectators, volunteers, police, fire and medical responders who bravely and compassionately assisted last Monday at the Boston Marathon.
I was sitting in the grandstand waiting for my husband, who was on a 4:18 pace, cheering on all the runners with the pride of someone who has run marathons.
You can imagine how horrific and unimaginable it was to watch these bombs go off. But I can tell you the great number of us tried to help in all the chaos. The military men and women who had completed the 26.2-mile course jumped right in doing all the right things — they showed such great leadership and compassion to those injured. I am so proud to have them protecting my family, friends and all American citizens.
Please pray for the families of the deceased, the injured (some young children who lost limbs), all of Boston and the average athlete who gets to be great on marathon day — we know you finished and will always be there to cheer our running community.
Our spirit remains unbroken.
Race Director, Shelter Island 10K
Three simple things
To the Editor:
When I walked out of my house this past Earth Day weekend, I was moved to see the Lowell-Liszanckie family and others across the Island picking up garbage on the side of the road.
Keeping in that environmental spirit, and with warm weather (hopefully) on its way, there are three simple things we can all do regarding lawn care to protect our natural resources and private property:
1. Cut the grass to no less than three inches high. This helps to discourage weeds and promote drought resistance.
2. Go organic: Use only natural pest and weed controls. If you absolutely must fertilize, use the “slow release” kind.
3. Irrigate the lawn early or late in the day to prevent water loss from evaporation.
Thank you for taking care of our Island and our planet. Happy spring!
Director of Membership,
Group for the East End
Take a bow, Drama Club
To the Editor:
If you talk to any parent today, they are constantly trying to figure out where the best place is to bring up their children. If they listen, I tell them to get a little involved here on the Island and you will find your answer won’t be far away.
As we always do, my wife and I attended the Shelter Island Drama Club’s musical “Legally Blonde” on opening night, Thursday, April 11. As we were leaving, the outstanding feeling we had was amazement at how many students and adults were participating. We couldn’t help but feel that this is what a community is all about. For those who don’t think good things are happening to these young folks, they must re-evaluate their priorities.
Watching the play you had to appreciate the hard work and long hours that had to be handled by many adults and children. We appreciated the performances and the courage of so many teenagers getting up before a full auditorium of people, looking out into the crowd and belting out a song. I attended a large school with only 1 percent of the students in the drama club. I hardly knew it existed so I never had that chance to build my self-esteem by performing at an early age. Who knows, to quote Marlon Brando from the 1954 movie “On the Waterfront,” “I could have been a contender.”
So from us to John Kaasik and the entire production crew and cast, this is one of the best things that happened on our Island. Anne and I see everything that we want in a community and want you to know that we value what you are giving to the children, families and residents of this Island. Thanks again, all of you, for another wonderful evening.
ANNE and BOB DeSTEFANO