Star Thanks

I am writing to thank you very much. I was in The Queens Courier, September 28, 2006, on page 19 - Star of Queens. My name is Joseph W. Ricevuto. You were so professional in your article about me. i was thrilled. Your photographer Christina was a marvelous and pleasant professional. She really went out of her way and the excitement your paper caused in Jackson Heights was unreal. By Sunday, the papers were all gone - wow!
So you people sure made a guy happy. Thanks a million. You are all great. Continued success.
Joseph W. Ricevuto
Jackson Heights

Waste Not Wednesday Program
I have recently joined the Steinhardt School of Education at NYU and am studying to become a math teacher. In one of my courses we are implementing a &#8220Waste Not Wednesday” program that, although simple, has revolutionized my thinking towards waste and our role in the environment.
The initiative is thus: carry a tote bag every Wednesday, keep an extra plastic bag in your purse, or something similar so that when making any purchase we have the ability to say, &#8220No thanks, keep the bag.”
On my first day at school, I stopped into a CVS pharmacy in Flushing and purchased a book bag, which was then placed into a larger plastic bag at the check-out line.
I stepped outside the store, threw the plastic bag into a garbage can and strapped the book bag to my back.
Was that bag recycled? No.
Did I think twice? No.
Would I do it again?
By reexamining how an action as basic as carrying a tote bag can affect a nation-wide problem as large as finding space for landfills is quite empowering. I have always envisioned large problems requiring large solutions, beyond my grasp and impossible to change.
We have the power to make change. So I call out to you, the reader, take the challenge, make this Wednesday a &#8220Waste Not Wednesday.”
Jessica Dimech
College Point Resident ready for a cleaner,
more conscientious neighborhood.

Dj Vu In Iraq
The Philippine Insurrection, which occurred in the early part of the twentieth-century, offers some eerie parallels to the current Iraq war.
In 1898, because of Commodore Dewey's naval victory over the Spanish fleet at Manila Bay, the United States assumed control of the Philippines. No one had planned for this and President McKinley decided that America would &#8220Christianize” and &#8220civilize” the Filipinos.
The American army entered into a brutal war against Philippine insurgents who wanted to run their own country. An unfortunate part of the conflict was the army's use of torture - the most notorious form of that torment was the &#8220water cure.” Dirty water was dumped into bamboo sections that were forced down the throats of prisoners. Soldiers would then jump on a prisoner's stomach to force the water out. This procedure would be repeated until the victim either informed or died.
A great debate arose in the United States over the torture issue. In the early months of 1902, after President McKinley had been assassinated in 1901 and replaced in office by Theodore Roosevelt, Roosevelt chose his close friend and ally Henry Cabot Lodge to mount a defense of the troops on the Senate floor.
Lodge ran Senate committee hearings on American misconduct in the Philippines. The committee did not even issue a final report.
On July 4, 1902, President Roosevelt declared the Philippines pacified. American casualties in the Philippine conflict totaled 4,374 soldiers. Approximately sixteen thousand guerillas and twenty thousand civilians were also killed.
The insurgency lay dormant for a few years but quickly reemerged. A low-level civil war has been under way in the Philippines ever since. Rebels have recently joined forces with Al Qaeda, and today the Philippines is one of the most unstable countries in Asia.
Martin H. Levinson
Forest Hills

History Lesson
One hundred years ago, famed social critic Upton Sinclair's masterpiece &#8220The Jungle” exposed the filthy conditions and cruel treatment of animals and workers in Chicago slaughterhouses. The book electrified the nation, led to enactment of the first Pure Food and Drug Act, and is generally credited with spawning the U.S. consumer and labor union movements.
Unfortunately, it did little to improve slaughterhouse working conditions and even less to reduce the cruelty of animal slaughter. Subsequent Humane Methods of Slaughter Acts of 1958 and 1978 were never funded or implemented.
For the last 24 years, World Farm Animals Day (wfad.org) has continued in Sinclair's footsteps, exposing the atrocious conditions of animals raised for food in the world's factory farms and slaughterhouses. On October 2 (Gandhi's birthday), I and hundreds of other caring folks in all 50 states and two dozen other countries are planning local educational events including information tables, exhibits, leafleting, marches and vigils.
It seems to me that folks who choose to eat animals owe them at least a decent life and truly humane slaughter. They should refuse to patronize a meat industry that cannot meet these minimal standards.
Daniel Benson