In my time volunteering, I have met Philadelphia's heroes. I've met at-risk children with few resources, but with teachers tirelessly helping them make the most of a second chance. I've seen the work of volunteers at school fund-raisers, food drives, after-school programs, hurricane shelters, Toys for Tots campaigns, Boys and Girls Clubs, and the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, and the meaningful work of the Humane Society of the United States. I've seen children choosing the mentorship of a football coach over peer pressure on a street corner. One of the best examples of a community deserving a second chance is the North Philadelphia Aztecs youth football team. As the players step onto Team Vick Field, they can hold their heads high and be proud that they are making Philly stronger.
The Eagles are an outstanding organization with a bright future, and I'm thankful for all the friendship, love, and support they gave me and my family. I look forward to seeing great things from them both on the field and in the community.
Michael Vick, Philadelphia
St. Joe's studied steps to recovery
What strikes me about the financial challenges facing St. Joseph's University is that they likely are not different from those at any other private university ("Turmoil on Hawk Hill," March 19). St. Joseph's efforts to increase revenues, decrease expenses, and keep tuition affordable should be applauded, and its financial executives commended, not criticized. They answered challenging economic times with sensible financial strategies. When St. Joseph's faculty members support their administration and embrace a culture of innovative change, they will help their university achieve long-term success and sustainability.
Tim Byrne, Wayne
Play it again, Boyd Theater
Thanks so much for covering the survival struggle of Philly's legendary Boyd Theater on Chestnut Street ("Boyd demolition may have started," March 18). Coming to this great city 32 years ago to pursue a disc jockey career, I couldn't help but be moved by the rich early history of our country that lives in the legendary buildings here. Why, then, did the organization tasked with preserving our architectural heritage - the Historical Commission - vote overwhelmingly to allow demolition because of the so-called financial hardship of the developer? Yes, it would be expensive to save the Boyd. But go visit the Beacon Theater or Radio City Music Hall in New York and you'll see what treasures these buildings are when kept alive. I am disgusted by the commission's shortsightedness. I feel like I'm losing a dear friend in the Boyd - one that doesn't have to die, and shouldn't.
Pierre Robert, Philadelphia
Kane acted within her discretion
It is absurd that an Inquirer editorial asserts that Attorney General Kathleen Kane should have brought prosecutions merely because of evidence that money was taken, when the same edition quotes Widener University law professor Robert Power to the effect that taking money and gifts alone is not a crime, that there must be a showing of a quid pro quo ("Sting evidence requires action," March 20). Given that difficulty, as well as others set forth in the news coverage, the decision not to bring charges was well within Kane's prosecutorial discretion.
James T. Ranney, Philadelphia, email@example.com
Justice Dept.'s loss is nation's
Harold Jackson says it all ("Mumia and 'Mockingbird'," March 16). It is indeed outrageous that senators have used "the tears of Faulkner's widow" to deprive our country of the knowledge, skill, and competence that Debo Adegbile would have brought to the U.S. Justice Department.
Jean Haskell, Philadelphia, Jean.firstname.lastname@example.org
Corbett serves up a tasty policy
Representing organizations that serve thousands of families and seniors across the Delaware Valley who struggle to put nutritious food on the table, we believe Gov. Corbett and state Department of Welfare Secretary Beverly D. Mackereth made the right decision by continuing the state's "heat and eat" program, preserving food assistance for 400,000 ("Gov. Corbett gets centered," March 11). Without the governor's intervention, these families would have faced devastating cuts to their food-stamp benefits, averaging $65 per month. It's notable that Corbett is only the third governor to take this bold step to shield families from food-stamp cuts in the federal farm bill. We hope Gov. Christie follows Corbett's lead and protects food assistance for the 157,000 families in New Jersey whose livelihoods still hang in the balance.
Jill Michael, president and CEO, United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey; Sherrie R. Savett, president, Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia; and Laura Wall, executive director, Greater Philadelphia Coalition Against Hunger