Q: In light of efforts to improve homeland security, do you think that all Americans re-entering the United States should be required to have a passport?
Yes, we can't be so naive as to think that we can go back to life as it was before 9/1 1. This is one small way we can help secure our borders. The cost of a passport pales compared to the amount most people spend when they cross the border to patronize the casinos. Unfortunately, this won't stop unscrupulous U.S. citizens living within our borders -- with or without passports -- who are intent on harming other Americans.
Deb Drinkwalter, Lockport
It is hard to imagine that terrorists who spent years planning and preparing for the 9/1 1 attacks would have any trouble obtaining passports, any more than criminals have any problems obtaining guns. The saddest thing is that the terrorists are winning without ever facing us in battle. One by one, we are giving up our freedoms. First the Patriot Act, and now the restriction of free passage between the friendly nations of North America. What freedoms will really be left to us?
Berne Kent, Wilson
My guess would be that, with the exception of businessmen and wealthy overseas travelers, most Western New Yorkers don't have a passport. So, in my opinion, the passport law could only be beneficial to us. Instead of going to restaurants and casinos in Canada, why not spend your money here? Out-of-state American tourists can stay here, too. It seems to me this idea is loaded with positives, with no negatives. I love New York.
Jim Seufert, Wheatfield
Why not? Anyone returning to the United States from Canada or Mexico via air travel must present proof of citizenship upon re-entry at U.S. Customs. We're only talking about those U.S. citizens who travel to those countries via automobile or train. Maybe it will curb illegal immigration and illegal entry. I carry my passport for just such occasions.
Terry Dexter, Cheektowaga
Last weekend I drove to Toronto to shop for some camera equipment. Not wanting to leave my passport in my parked car, I stuck it in my pocket. The only trouble was, every time I had to reach in my pocket, I had to worry about it falling out. Can you imagine what it will be like if tens of thousands of passports are routinely crossing the border? They will be lying on the ground everywhere. Just imagine a Buffalo Bills game, or a concert in Hamilton. The sweepers will have their pick. Canada is our friend. Let's keep it that way.
Robert Lee Tarnay, Buffalo