The United States of America, a rudderless ship, powerless except to flounder about. That is how I perceive the direction of this once wonderful experiment that we call a democracy. The crew seems to be as clueless as the missing captain. A ship without a rudder will not be able to navigate in a safe manner, circling to starboard or port gets you nowhere.

Diane Johnston

Milford

On November 18th, along with 50,000 others I enjoyed watching the Yale football team defeat archrival Harvard to claim its first outright Ivy League Championship in 37 years.

However, many fans were unable to enjoy the entire game due to tremendously slow and tedious security measures that while necessary and well-intentioned were not prepared for the size of the crowd, the size Yale itself anticipated and advertised. The New Haven Register’s own Randall Beach noted this same issue.

Then, when finally able to enter the venerable and historic Yale Bowl, a facility that has seen a significant facelift to restore crumbling concrete and replace splintered seating, fans were disappointed upon viewing the actual field. Instead of the pristine grass and the iconic intertwined blue “Y” and crimson “H” at midfield and freshly painted end zones, even the most casual observer couldn’t help but be disappointed in the torn-up sod and faded Yale logos on the field of play.

It is a shame that even after selling out the parking lots in advance of The Game and forcing each patron to buy at least two tickets, that the pride in the stands for the students on the gridiron was not met by Yale University putting on a first class display as they do for other events. The pride of Yale may have been displayed on the field by the players but there was anything but pride for the field itself.

Yale University has two years to learn from all of this and bring back a Yale-Harvard classic back to New Haven once again.

Jody Dietch

Orange

To easily understand what the new federal tax law means for the people of Connecticut, just look at Effective Tax Rate (ETR). The ETR is the average rate of taxes one pays against their gross income, including SALT (State and Local Taxes). Like most of my friends, people who live in high tax states, like New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut, we get to deduct out high SALT and mortgage interest which lowered our taxable income and lowered our ETR. Seems fair right? Why should we be taxed twice on the same income? What our President and Congress are doing by eliminating the SALT deduction is rewarding the folks that voted for them by lowering the ETR for almost all the states between the coasts and raising it for the high taxed (Democratic) states. These middle country folks got tired of paying federal taxes that were funneled to the 50% who don’t pay income taxes (mostly on the coasts) and voted for change. Raising the individual deduction will help a little; but your ETR is going up by 2 - 5%; get ready to pay more, just for living in a Blue state. Both Connecticut Democrats and Republicans won’t like this. No wonder people are fleeing Connecticut at record rates. This will only get worse when the next governor of Connecticut will be forced to raise state taxes yet again to cover the ever growing state deficit, which just went up $200M.

Bart Piccirillo

Bethany

In a recent commentary in the New Haven Register, Susan Campbell had a few ignorant things to say regarding contraceptive care. She used the term to “skip out on coverage on moral or religious objections.” Skip out? Really? She went on to say that President Trump is “messing with a woman’s important right to accessible and affordable birth control.” Until Obamacare (ironically named the Affordable Care Act) women were to purchase oral contraceptives just as they would any other prescription medicine, either out-of-pocket or via a co-pay. It was only recently that many women were able to obtain these items at little or no cost to them. Campbell acts like this has been a long-term right that has been this way for many years. The whole Obamacare debacle was passed only when President Obama lied to seven pro-life (or as the left would say, “anti-choice”) Congressmen who were not going to vote for the Act. Had he not lied to them, they would have fallen short of the votes needed to pass it. So don’t for one minute act like Pres. Trump is assaulting women’s reproductive rights. It is merely going to the point it was before the ACA.

Women have access to oral contraceptives with a prescription just as they always have. There is no one telling them they can’t obtain it. As far as affordability, they can get it at a very reasonable cost at certain pharmacies, not to mention thousands of women’s clinics throughout the country. Now if you’re thinking Planned Parenthood, that’s not necessarily the clinic I’m speaking of. There are more than enough other clinics around, so the liberals need to stop whining that women will have no access to healthcare if Planned Parenthood is defunded by the federal government. Your argument is weak at best.

Shawn A. McKenna

Milford

I was dismayed to read in the New Haven Register (Nov. 8) and Bulletin (Nov. 16) that a group calling itself Jewish Voice for Peace demonstrated in front of the Anti-Defamation League's local office to protest ADL's sponsorship of the National Counter-Terrorism Seminar police exchange program in Israel. My first thought was Vladimir Putin hacked the Bulletin and inserted this "news" to detract us from fighting evil while he pursues his own policies in the Middle East. Unfortunately, the story is real.

I'm appalled that a supposed peace group will put "Jewish" in its name while promoting such short-sighted and self-defeating positions. Thinking that fighting terrorists is a form of racism is beyond Orwellian. It is really sad. And dangerous. The policies advocated by this "peace" group would result in the death and suffering of more Arabs, Jews and Americans. Rather than bring peace, they would make it harder for America to fight terrorism and turn Israel into another Syria or Iraq, God forbid. Just look at how peacefully the Shia, Sunni, Christian, Kurdish, and Yazidi people are living together in those countries right now. JVP does not represent my view or the view of anyone I know.

Cooperation between Israel and America, be it with law enforcement, the military, or economically, has proven to be mutually beneficial for 70 years. While there seems to be a focus on how much foreign aid Israel receives from the U.S., not enough has been said about how much America receives in return. What is the value of American lives saved by using Israeli technology and techniques? Historically, Arabs have made peace with Israel when it is strong, not weak. Peace through strength saves lives. Making Israel weaker will endanger all of us.

Andrew Danzig

Woodbridge