Letters to the editor, Feb. 1
Who will buy my house?
I’m hoping one of you will buy my house. The appraisers just told me that it’s worth over half a million dollars, and soon I will be paying almost $16,000 taxes on it. It’s worth more than a mansion in Bloomfield.
A realtor offered me $300,000 for the house, or a little more, if I got lucky. He had no idea that my house is worth over half a mil. I have no garage or driveway, so you’ll get plenty of exercise walking to your parking space, if you can find one, as the parking in front of my house is used only by visitors, who are quite lively when they yell, loiter and slam their doors day and night, especially on Sundays, when they all go to the mega church.
If you love children, you will get busloads of them, every day, as I’m right next to two schools, and you’ll enjoy the megaphones from the summer camp and the loud music. There are also a multitude of bus stops.
White people keep telling me that density is a good thing, and you’ll have plenty here. We have a huge parking garage, loads of new apartments, and soon we’ll have a mega hotel. And if someone wants to rape or murder me, the people in the office building behind me can call the cops, because they can look out their windows right into my house.
You will be warm and cozy here all the time, as I have no central air, and it gets nice and toasty in the summer.
Do I have any offers? Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are willing to pay half a million dollars for my house.
Childish, or is it just me?
If the Republican Party is just that to other political leaders, why is the Democratic Party called the Democrat Party by current GOP leaders? Is it childish? Of course.
I’m sure glad that no democratic leaders have joined the republicans in the sandbox to say, “If you’re going to keep calling us the Democrat Party, were going to call you the Republic Party.” I’m thankful to the Dems for not doing something so kindergarten.
On a much more serious note, most if not all adults said nothing when people coined the phrase “pro-life.” So again why do those same Republicans call the people or the “pro-choice” movement pro-abortion? They know that’s not accurate. There are women in the pro-choice movement that would not have an abortion themselves, but respect the right of other women to make their own decision. Of course all pro-life people know that. Aside from being childish, I believe the GOP leadership is also being cruel. Could it be that they’re just trying to impress the president by acting like him?
Continuing the dialogue on legalized marijuana
I have written a series of letters expressing my professional opinion in opposition to legalizing recreational marijuana. In 1998 I investigated a case involving a 19-year-old Montclair resident who walked into his parents’ bedroom and shot his father at point-blank range while he was lying in bed next to his mother. The father, mortally wounded, jumped from his bed, fled down a flight of stairs and was able to reach the front lawn where he collapsed. His 19-year-old son followed him and while he was laying on the front lawn shot him two more times in the head, killing him. In questioning, this 19-year-old stated that he and his father were at odds over his use of marijuana and harder drugs, viewing his father as a rattlesnake. He further stated that his father taught him that when killing a rattlesnake make sure it’s dead, by shooting it in the head. And that’s what he did to make sure his father was dead. At trial his lawyer pleaded insanity but the judge and jury did not buy it; sentencing him to life in prison.
As I have indicated in previous writings, I do not profess to any degree of medical knowledge. However, common sense would tell you, the use of marijuana and harder drugs by a person with an unstable mental condition is a lethal combination, which I can say with certainty in my opinion played a big part in this tragedy.
In 1991, while attending the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia, I learned of Richard Ramirez, dubbed “The Night Stalker,” an American serial killer who killed at least 14 people and tortured and raped two dozen more women, before he was captured in Los Angeles in 1985. Ramirez smoked marijuana with his cousin Miguel, who told stories of torturing and raping Vietnamese women during the war. Ramirez was first arrested for smoking marijuana in 1977, progressing to a cocaine addiction.
My reason for writing these letters is hopefully to educate the public from my experience during my long law-enforcement career. If the legislators and the governor want to gamble on legalizing recreational marijuana then so be it, but I would feel I performed a public service by voicing and expressing my opinion. It is not my intention to carry on this debate, however I would like to thank the Montclair Local for publishing my letters. To my critics, I don’t believe I’m misinformed but speak from hands-on life experience dealing with real people faced with real-life issues. I respectfully suggest you speak with a professional drug counselor at a rehabilitation facility. You might be enlightened to hear what they have to say on this matter.
It is my hope that no one ever has to experience a tragedy in their family because of legalization of recreational marijuana.
I respect everyone’s opinions and hope I have created a healthy dialogue for people to make up their own minds on the debate to legalize recreational marijuana.
Thomas J. Russo