Surviving war, then the indignities of VA care
Aiken, S.C.: I am one disappointed 100% disabled Marine Vietnam veteran having to ask the Veterans Administration for help. I was wounded five times in combat and had two ruptured discs in my back. Being too young for a fusion at 19, one was removed and repaired.
I went to a VA clinic in Florida in 1987 with extreme back pain and was sent home with muscle relaxers. I lost the feeling in my left leg from hip to toes when I got in my car. I spent a year in outside therapy but didn’t get the feeling back. In 1999, I went to the VA in Augusta, Ga., with a small lump on the top of my thigh on the same dead leg. I was sent home without a biopsy because I didn’t have anyone to take me to and from the hospital. A nurse friend referred me to a doctor, so I drove there for a biopsy. I learned I had a rare and deadly cancer. I lost a six by six inch piece of my thigh above the knee, which left me unable to bend my leg.
I lost my job in law enforcement due to a war wound after the repaired disc blew out. I was refused my retirement and spent five years fighting the VA, which blamed my job.
I’ve tried to be reimbursed for a shower and two toilets at my new house that make life easier, having difficulty when using the bathroom. I had paid up front, not being able to wait due to pain. I explained my extenuating circumstances but was told the VA has a policy not to reimburse veterans’ claims after the fact. Gregory J. Topliff
Brooklyn: Congratulations, Chris Rock, on your new Netflix special. The truth shall set us free. I applaud your honesty while I’m peeing my pants. Bravo, bravo, bravo! Mariann Tepedino
Miss this strip
West Orange, N.J.: Can someone please find a way to bring back “Calvin and Hobbes”? I haven’t enjoyed the comics since 1995. Reruns of “Calvin and Hobbes” are more than welcome. Lonnie Bond
Wantagh, L.I.: With all the controversy surrounding the removal of “Dilbert” from the Daily News and other publications, I have one question: Why is “The Cosby Show” still being shown on TV? John Romanelli
Rockaway, N.J.: To Voicer Terri Gilbert: Inclusion is not changing a white person to a Black person. It’s honoring a true Black person who contributed to history. Why shouldn’t the Daily News show Rosa Parks and Rosie the Riveter? That would be inclusion. Michael Ilardi
Manhattan: I bet the two men vying to run the helipad downtown (“Hearing on helipad deal delayed after News’ report on firm’s ties,” March 4) don’t live anywhere near the flight paths of the more than 1,000 monthly helicopter flights and more than 10 daily seaplane flights over the Hudson and East Rivers and a large stretch of the city from early spring to fall. These ear-splitting choppers and planes cause mental and physical stress and spew toxic fumes. They fly close to buildings, bridges and each other. Just two years ago, a tourist helicopter crashed into the East River near 34th St., killing all five passengers. It was luck that the plane didn’t crash into a building or onto the street and kill more people. How do these choppers and planes help the city? Mostly, they benefit wealthy people off to their second homes in the Hamptons, tourists or, in the case of seaplanes, commuters to Boston and D.C. Miriam Applebaum
Bronx: It is difficult enough to comprehend the assault on women and their reproductive organs, but to hear that some Republican-led legislatures are now changing the laws that protect children in the workforce is insane. The Arkansas governor just loosened all child protection laws. One state wants to permit having kids work until 9 p.m. Another will allow kids between 14 and 17 to serve alcohol in business establishments. Some businesses are already utilizing migrant children to work. Force women to bear kids, then write laws that will kill the kids early. Have we as a country gone totally mad? Claudette Mobley
All friends here
Manhattan: Re “Eric finesses Cardi B flap & Keechant slight” (March 11): It’s just another day with another “promotion” of another woman with vague, if any, qualifications other than being one more gal pal of the player, Mayor Adams. This is incompetence and cronyism at work — again. Francesca Turchiano
Out for themselves
Mahopac, N.Y.: A New York assemblyman explained that laws are made to protect us. I guess now we need a law to protect us from corrupt union operators. It would prevent union leaders from ever profiting from their work in a union. I wonder when the UFT and DC37 presidents pop up on the administration’s payroll to reward them for selling out their retirees. If you voted yes to this switch to Medicare Advantage and are still working, don’t retire, because you just sold out your own future health care. James Garry
Chicago: Listening to Tucker Carlson on Fox News, it’s obvious those party animals at the Capitol Building on Jan. 6 never intended to attack police officers, break windows or call for the execution of Mike Pence and Nancy Pelosi. I mean, who among us hasn’t done something silly after consuming a little too much wine or maybe an off-brand drug? Personally, I shudder whenever I recall all the times I was almost apprehended for perpetrating a major crime. But maybe someone should tip off Tucker that continuing to perpetuate untruths and spreading disinformation while his employer is being sued for doing the very same thing is not only reckless but totally Trumpian. Bob Ory
Great Neck, L.I.: Last week marked 42 years since legendary anchorman Walter Cronkite signed off for his final time on the “CBS Evening News.” Cronkite manned the anchor desk from April 16, 1962 until March 6, 1981. Watching Cronkite on the evening news was a communal experience in much the same way that listening to President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s fireside chats on the radio was for a previous generation. When Cronkite declared that the Vietnam War was unwinnable, President Lyndon B. Johnson knew he had lost the support of middle America. When Cronkite closed with “and that’s the way it is,” we knew everything that mattered in the world that day. His presence and voice of calm reason are sorely lacking today. Larry Penner
Bayonne: So I hear that Sleepy Joe Biden is going to announce his 2024 run for president in April. I guess he’s waiting for April Fools Day. Mike Armstrong
Manhattan: This is a follow-up to the story of the savage beating of Joseph Borgan that took place in Times Square on May 20, 2021 (“Jewish victim: ‘I could have died,’ ” May 22). There has been a groundswell of opposition to the decision on behalf of the Manhattan district attorney’s office to offer one of the perpetrators, Waseem Awawdeh, a six-month plea deal. Several thousand concerned New Yorkers signed a petition calling for the plea to be rescinded and seeking to have Awawdeh’s attack classified as a hate crime. The Jewish community is under attack with escalating incidents of hate crimes, and this offer trivializes these crimes and does nothing to dissuade would-be perpetrators. We believe this story is of continued interest to you and your readers as you report on local affairs. Daniel Feder
Valhalla, N.Y.: Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer, both pushing 40, are throwing lights out! The Yankees studs Carlos Rodon, Frankie Montas and Tommy Kahnle, all 30 or younger, are out with injuries before the season even gets close to getting started! Maybe Yankees fans should just become Mets fans! Or maybe just have the Yankees brass go to the local baseball leagues next to the stadium and ask a few sandlotters if they want to pitch today! Michael Grisanti
Readers sound off on the Veterans Administration, helicopters and child labor laws
Surviving war, then the indignities of VA care