Letters to the editor: Pocono readers concerned about graffiti, border security and more – Pocono Record

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Read on for the most recent letter submissions from regional Tri-County Independent and Pocono Record readers.
More local letters:Cultivated meat safety and celebrating Pa. teachers
Graffiti vandalism, a problem once confined to commercial districts and urbanized areas, is making its way onto public lands and natural areas in the Poconos. 
In a recent incident, vandals have sprayed pink paint and graffiti on ancient rocks overlooking Poplar Creek along the east side of Route 115 in Monroe County at the west end of the Poconos. These are not just ordinary rocks. Poplar Gap is a member of a geologic unit known as the Catskill Formation, which dates back approximately 400 million years, extending from upstate New York all the way through the Poconos, where it is known as the Pocono Formation. This scenic area should be protected as a geologic heritage site, not used as a canvas for idiots with cans of spray paint to “express themselves” by defacing property and scenic wonders in our region. 
Graffiti vandalism is defined as the act of marking or defacing premises or other property without permission. Phone calls to the township in which this crime occurred, and to the police, were met with a lukewarm response. Apparently, this kind of vandalism is not considered a crime unless it occurs on somebody’s property, leaving it to local communities using public funds to deal with the damage.
It is time that we stopped treating graffiti vandalism as a harmless prank. Whether on public or private property, this is a serious crime that is already harming our environment, our economy, and the tourism industry in the Poconos. 
Juliet Perrin, Albrightsville
The Pocono Record front page article: “Pa. advocates renew push to legalize weed” (Dec. 8) is a disservice to the topic of legal weed. The majority of the article is pro recreational marijuana. The article grudgingly gives a few short sentences towards the negative psychological effects of using marijuana. 
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has nothing good to say about recreational weed. On the contrary, the HHS warns users of recreational weed: Studies link marijuana use to depression, anxiety and psychotic episodes. Marijuana affects timing and coordination in athletic performance. Driving motor vehicles while under the influence of marijuana can cause slower reactions, decreased coordination and difficulty reacting to signals and sounds while driving the roads. 
The brain does not fully develop until the age of 25. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that using marijuana before the brain fully develops “may affect how the brain builds connections for functions like attention, memory and learning.”  
According to the National Institutes for Health (NIH), the effects of recreational marijuana include altered sense of time, impaired body movement, difficulty in thinking and problem solving. 
These Pennsylvania advocates promoting legal recreational weed include a multitude of elected politicians. That is, government representatives. So why don’t these government representatives consult these U.S. government agencies (HHS, CDC and NIH) to learn about the ill effects of recreational marijuana and protect the citizens from the psychological harm of using legal weed and protect the rest of us from the public danger of legal weed users? Because there is much money to be made from legal weed to fill the state coffers and proponents of recreational weed will reward these politicians by keeping them in political office.   
Dan Pryor, Belvidere, NJ
Now that Pennsylvania’s statewide firearm deer hunting season began on Saturday, November 26th drivers need to be especially cautious as hunters will be pushing deer through the woods and across busy highways and panicked wounded deer will be running into the roads.  In addition, when a matriarch doe is killed, whose job it is to safely cross her family, her orphans will run into the roads without caution.Studies show that hunting actually increases car-deer collisions.  According to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration, most car-deer collisions happen during hunting season.  Pennsylvania’s second largest insurance company (the nation’s 12th largest insurer) — Erie Insurance — collected data that showed a five-fold increase in car-deer collisions on the first day of hunting, and that car-deer collisions remain high throughout hunting season.
This fact raises the issue of liability.  If a wounded deer running into a road causes a car-deer collision resulting in car damage, injury, or death, should the Pennsylvania Game Commission (PGC), the property owner who gave permission to the hunter to hunt, a municipality sponsoring a deer killing program, or the hunter be liable for damages?  There should be no immunity.  Someone needs to be held accountable.
Silvie Pomicter, Chinchilla
The White House now calls the Biden laptop a distraction.  But when the Democrats, Biden and various US Departments of the government actively supported the media giants in preventing any discussion or information on their sites about it, they created the worst political sabotage or prevention of free speech in American history. 
Americans should understand what happened – the media chose our next President. The media suppressed free discussion, the media controlled the news, and the media was clearly biased. 
Media companies are governed under various federal and State laws to at least follow their own corporate responsibilities. Most would say anything goes in politics but this extreme subversion of free speech was totally wrong.
Robert Pohlman, East Stroudsburg
President Biden wants to send another $37 billion of taxpayers’ funds to Ukraine.  This is on top of $68 billion previously sent. Why hasn’t our federal General Accounting Office (GAO) performed any audits of these funds? Taxpayers deserve to know that these dollars have been spent for their intended purpose.  There should be a full accounting to confirm no waste, fraud or abuse has resulted in any misspent cash.  Remember all the billions which disappeared during our twenty year Afghanistan fiasco? When will our European NATO allies match us dollar for dollar in aid to Ukraine? 
By the end of 2022, two million plus illegal immigrants will have crossed our Southern border for the second year in a row. Preserving our own national sovereignty is equally as important as Ukraine’s. The President and Congress should insure that every additional billion sent to Ukraine is matched by allocating a billion more to secure our own border.   
Larry Penner, Great Neck, NY


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