Letters to the Editor | Dec. 6, 2022

2 months ago The Philadelphia Inquirer

Fighting double standard

Can someone explain the double standard in professional sports regarding fighting? Why did the Eagles’ A.J. Brown receive a $10,000 penalty for “taunting”? I watched the highlights: Brown pointed at two Steelers defensive backs who failed to stop him from scoring in the end zone. He didn’t put his hands on anyone. Recently, the Flyers’ Zack MacEwen and the New York Islanders’ Matt Martin were in a fistfight on the ice. Their penalty? $0. Both sports involve a certain level of physicality and aggression. Why is fighting only allowed in the NHL? Is there a legitimate reason for the disparity other than the obvious one? I suggest all the impacted NFL and NBA players ban together for a class-action suit for a refund. The collective fines likely total in the millions.

K. Mayes, Philadelphia

A bulwark for pediatric cancer patients

This month, countless hospitalized children will be able to spend the holidays with their families thanks largely to the work of Audrey Evans, a renowned pediatric oncologist at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia who cofounded Ronald McDonald House, a home away from home where pediatric patients worldwide can experience something resembling normalcy with their loved ones. For those of us unfortunate enough to have been inducted involuntarily into the pediatric oncology community, Audrey represented hope — or despair — for our child’s prospects beyond the limited treatments that were available decades ago. I met Audrey in October 1991, when my daughter Susanna was diagnosed with neuroblastoma — at the time, among the most treatment-resistant and lethal of childhood cancers. Somehow, despite the direst prognoses at each stage of treatment — chemo, surgery, monoclonal antibodies, an experimental targeted treatment — Susanna was with us for another seven and a half years. Audrey and I continued to stay in touch after Susanna’s death — she as a friend and then board member of the charity I had formed to fund research for fatal childhood diseases: the Susanna and Lucy DeLaurentis Charitable Foundation (named for Susanna and my older daughter, Lucy, who died of cystic fibrosis). When Audrey died in September, she was rightly remembered for her role in the founding of Ronald McDonald Houses. But she was so much larger than any one institution — she was an institution in her own right, a bulwark to thousands of families rocked by life-threatening diagnoses of pediatric cancer.

Michael J. DeLaurentis, Elkins Park

Bright Christmas

On behalf of the board members of the Bridesburg Civic Association and all of the grateful residents of our community, we want to thank IBEW Local 98 business manager Mark Lynch Jr. and his team for generously replacing the vandalized lights on our Christmas tree at the Bridesburg Recreation Center. The expert union electricians from Henkels and McCoy took down the severed light strands and rewired the entire tree in less than two hours. Local 98′s early gift to our community saved a beloved Christmas tradition. We thank the good-hearted members of IBEW Local 98 and wish them — and everyone — a very Merry Christmas!

Michael Driscoll, City Council member, 6th District, Philadelphia

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