New York

Letters to the Editor for Friday, May 15

Your Voice

Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion

Trump deserves the blame for economy

Empty shelves in grocery stores, cars stuck in snail pace food lines, farmers destroying food that can’t be delivered, 30 million out of work and double-digit Depression-level unemployment are signs of economic collapse resulting from Trump’s failure to prepare the country for a virus he knew was coming in January.
While COVID-19 was spreading from Europe to major airports in the states, he spent two months playing golf and holding MAGA rallies telling his cult the virus was a hoax.
Meanwhile, COVID-19 was arriving unabated from Europe to major East Coast airports and Chicago, spreading a virus, infecting the country and killing over 80,000 Americans and counting.
By the time the United States led the world in positive COVID-19 cases, Trump was calling it the China Virus.
Opening up America for business as usual puts profit before people by sacrificing them on the altar of greed and is predicated on the 1930s German slogan of “work sets you free.”
However, if the truth sets us free, then the truth is the Obama recovery is officially over and the Trump recession has begun as a result of what could be called the Trump Virus.
John Pagoda

NY should hold an all-mail-in primary

The presidential portion of the New York primary was canceled. Then, a federal district judge ruled that unconstitutional and indicated the presidential primary would carry on. However, the state Board of Elections is contesting the judge’s ruling.
Sanders has dropped out with almost no way to get the 1,991 delegates to clinch the Democratic nomination. However, Biden has not officially reached that number, either.
Even though Sanders is out, his “message” is not.
Why not have the primary so he could receive more delegates and more of a “voice” at the convention?
At the same time, Biden could reach the official 1,991 number to prevent a possible brokered convention.
With the ongoing COVID-19, why doesn’t the state of New York have an exclusive “vote by mail” for its primary?
There is already a national push for a “vote by mail” for the upcoming presidential election, especially since the pandemic might still be ongoing. Our state could take the lead by being the first state to conduct all-inclusive mail vote for its primary.
More importantly, New York should not be setting an example of canceling an election, any election, a precedent we do not want to give the POTUS.
Hugh Johnson

Transition program is worth the money

In response to the May 8 Gazette article (“Parents press to keep Niskayuna special ed program in Schenectady”) concerning the possible cancellation of the Niskayuna School District Community Transition Program: I’m not a stakeholder in this issue for any side.
However, I am a Niskayuna taxpayer who is a retired Capital Region BOCES special education teacher who developed a similar program at the College of St. Rose for 12 years.
Students are with their peers in the college setting. Their peers are no longer at the high school. Their classmates have already moved on. Students that are 19-21 shouldn’t be housed with 15-18-year-olds.
The independence these students gain is immeasurable. These students have job-sites, learn a schedule, get from class to class, have lunch, use public transportation, advocate for themselves in a community setting.
These are life skills they need to be learning. To say that bringing the program back to the high school means all they will miss is sitting in the SCCC classroom is incorrect.
Will the district save money by cutting the program? Probably, but that’s short-term. In the long term, some of these individuals will get jobs, pay taxes and not rely solely on the government. You can’t put a price on that.
How many want to pursue a Regents diploma? From my 12 years of doing a community-based program with lots of students, the answer is zero. Many will go on to get good jobs that don’t need a Regents diploma or a college degree.
George Lorang

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