Letters, Letters to the Editor, Opinion

Nov. 12 letters to the editor

Shocked by vitriol over warming shelter

The neighborhood meeting at the Sabra UMC in Jerome Park on Monday, Nov. 6, was lively and spirited.

I was shocked to see members of the community who oppose the warming shelter shouting obscenities and screaming in a church where services are held. They gave true meaning to the phrase “There’s no hate like Christian love.”

Still, despite the anger and obscenities, I was moved by the compassion, knowledge and experience demonstrated by our community members who are organizing this warming shelter. I was impressed by how thoroughly planned and researched this shelter is — and these are some of the key elements I took away from it:

  • Our neighbors are freezing as temperatures drop.
  • Sleeping outside is not only torturous, but life-threatening. 
  • The shelter will be staffed with employees, not solely volunteers. 
  • The shelter will be closed during daytime hours. 
  • The shelter will not allow drug use on the premises.

Of course there will be issues and squabbles associated with having our neighbors in crisis nearby. Hunger, cold, illness and trauma all create instability and mental health challenges.

However, I would rather encounter a neighbor who is a little less refined, or who is having some big emotions due to the trauma imposed by the system, than refuse them shelter in their time of need.

Congratulations to my compassionate, empathetic and truly Christian neighbors who are trying their best during these monstrous times. I cannot think of a better use for a church than to save the lives of our neighbors in need.

Rosalina Mills

Election matters, policy matters

Voters clearly chose to enshrine the issues that matter to them in the recent elections in Kentucky, Virginia and Ohio.

Candidates clearly orchestrated what was important to voters of all factions — blue, red or purple. Voters are clearly tired of all the angry rhetoric and ensuing violence and instead want to focus on priorities that will make their lives better.

As I have stated quite frequently, voters are the building blocks of a nation’s democratic foundation. The current election results are a resounding response to that, including Philadelphia’s first Black woman mayor and new city council members.

Syamala Jagannathan