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Everybody's Column

Illegal immigrants are just scapegoats

The, uh, guardians of our laws have found their bogeyman -- the illegal alien. Yet, hypocritically, many still dismiss the deceptive, illogical rationales of the Iraq war, overlook illegal wire-tapping of Americans, illegal retention and torture of prisoners, illegal outing of covert CIA officials and the unaccounted for billions of dollars by the Bush administration.

They see evil, and label as "hopelessly liberal" those trying to get a handle on undocumented people who have crossed our borders, in need of work. No, I don't condone this. But so many of us, through fortunate birthright, can't quite differentiate "crime." Illegal entry crime is horrific, yet possibly treasonous or impeachable crimes are ignored.

The alien issue is complex. But to think undocumented workers have "stolen our jobs" is bogus. Those jobs have been outsourced by the greed of tax-exempt corporations. Where are adequate solutions from critics of any proposition, except a 2,000-mile "Berlin Wall"? Was there any effort by a six-year Republican-controlled Congress? What for? It's so much easier to name-call or subvert future policy makers and their attempts at sane approaches. But hey, it's election time. One group has little to cheer for. Best find something to rail against.

Leonard Gross

East Amherst

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Wal-Mart is too large for Orchard Park site

As Orchard Park considers a Super Wal-Mart for Milestrip Road, standards are being dismissed. For example, a new State Environmental Quality Review document should be filed. The current one was written for Sam's Club, a vastly different operation. Wal-Mart will also fall 143 parking spaces short of what town ordinances require. If the town waives this rule, it will lose credibility with citizens and businesses that are held to the rules.

Furthermore, Wal-Mart will bring thousands of additional vehicles to the area, which already has traffic problems. Amelia Drive is poorly designed and Milestrip experiences backups due to left turns into Quaker Crossing.

This site is also within a 15-minute walk from residential neighborhoods and Bryant and Stratton College. But the sidewalks on Milestrip stop at California Road and there are none on Amelia Drive and Amanda Lane. How can the town create a destination, increase traffic and not provide for pedestrian safety? Pedestrian infrastructure built to the standards of the Americans With Disabilities Act is needed.

A Super Wal-Mart is not a good fit for Milestrip Road. If approved, Orchard Park's citizens will have to live with the results of the Town Board's mistake for years.

Kathryn Gorkiewicz

Orchard Park

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Airport screeners need to do a much better job

According to an article that appeared in the Nov. 15 edition of The Buffalo News, undercover investigators from the Government Accountability Office were able to transport detonators, liquid explosives and liquid incendiary components through screening checkpoints at 19 domestic airports several times this year. This news is indeed disturbing.

Yet I derive a great deal of comfort from the knowledge that the stalwarts at our airports' security checkpoints continue to safeguard us from the deadliest weapon in the terrorists' vast arsenal -- exploding flip-flops.

Christopher Underwood

Buffalo

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Bass Pro doesn't merit millions from taxpayers

My friend and I recently traveled to Hershey, Pa. En route, we couldn't resist making the slight detour to Bass Pro located in the Harrisburg Mall. Our anticipation heightened as we drove toward the mall. Once we entered Bass Pro, however, our anticipation quickly turned to disappointment. It is nothing more than a sporting goods store with a number of stuffed animals and an oversized fish tank, hardly the kind of place people would drive out of their way to get to.

If Larry Quinn's and Bob Rich's golfing buddy wants to open a Bass Pro location in Buffalo, he should do so without a multimillion-dollar taxpayer subsidy.

Michael Kuzma

Buffalo

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Most sex offenders don't repeat crimes

Assemblyman Mark Schroeder stated in his Nov. 19 Another Voice: "The current sentencing for sex offenders is clearly insufficient, especially considering that studies show they are more likely than most other criminals to repeat their crimes." Actually, current studies show just the opposite. A May 2007 study states: "Sex offenders are arrested and/or convicted of committing a new sex crime at a lower rate than other offenders who commit other new nonsexual crimes." (Research Bulletin: Sex Offender Populations, Recidivism and Actuarial Assessment, New York State Division of Probation and Correctional Alternatives.)

The study examined 19,827 offenders on the New York State Sex Offender Registry. Contrary to the popular mythology that most sex offenders repeat their crimes, the study reported that only 8 precent had committed a new sex offense within eight years of their date of first registration.

Rev. C. David Hess

New York State representative SOhopeful International

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Paul is best candidate in the presidential race

I am writing in regard to the letters regarding our next president. To these people, I want to ask the question: Have you heard of Rep. Ron Paul? He's a Republican conservative who is also running for president. I think that readers might find Paul's views and agenda very uplifting. Until October, I was a Democrat. Then I read about Paul and educated myself on our economy and our political system, which made me change so I could vote for Paul in the February primaries.

Paul is a candidate who wants to: bring our troops home immediately; put the value back in our plummeting dollar; take big government out of people's lives, including ending the IRS and its misapplication of the income tax on most citizens; and use the Constitution to restore our country and government to the visions of our founding fathers and many others. Check it out at RonPaul2008.com. You won't see as much of him on our biased media. But if his campaign keeps going like it has, he won't be ignored.

Dennis Kazmierczak

Blasdell

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Children are a blessing, give meaning to life

Upon opening the paper on Nov. 17, I read the story, "Thanks to adoption, a family blossoms." It was just beautiful to see Janice and Brad Samit with their six children. I am 94 years old with four girls and one son. I have six grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren. When I read the story, I had tears in my eyes. Having children is what life is all about.

Ted Prorok

East Aurora

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