New York

Letters to the Editor for Saturday, July 18

Your Voice

Grateful for school graduation coverage

At this time last year, I wrote a letter expressing my disappointment with the lack of coverage given to the graduating class from Scotia-Glenville High School. I am writing again but this time to say thank you. I was surprised and pleased to see a story featuring the Scotia-Glenville graduates at the top of the front page of the 2020 graduation section of the June 26 newspaper. The special section also included a nice summary of the top SGHS graduates with their individual photos and future plans. Thank you, Daily Gazette. Well done.
Suzanne King

Take a lesson from subatomic particles

There are many subatomic particles. Some have an electrical charge, like protons and electrons, which are positive and negative, respectively. Some, like a neutron, have no charge at all, and they only possess mass.
People can be like subatomic particles.
Some people are attracted to each other and others are repulsed, these are both natural interactions. We call them normal.
Normal people wear their mask. A person who doesn’t wear a mask is called a moron.
Morons are like neutrons, just adding to the problem and not helping out at all. We protons and electrons go about our business creating new things and obeying the laws of physics; we help keep things going. Morons and neutrons just make things worse by creating isotopes and weighing things down. What kind of subatomic particle are you? Don’t be a neutron; wear a mask.
Paul Donahue

City should void divisive messaging

I write this letter to the attention of Schenectady Mayor Gary McCarthy. As a matter of policy, it seems the government should stay away from divisive messaging unless they deliver it in forums where debate can occur.  Painting streets is no such forum. Therefore, I propose an equally prominent street painting of “Blue Lives Matter” in support of law enforcement. What say you?
John Myers

Tonko jumped the gun on man’s arrest

I have always been a supporter of Congressman Paul Tonko and respected his insight and opinions. I was, however, stunned at his rapid judgment to condemn the alleged police brutality pertaining to the incident on Brandywine Avenue.
One would think he might at least wait until all the facts and observations had been reviewed and analyzed before criticizing the actions of the Schenectady police officer. The many incidents of possible police brutality throughout the country make this a hot button issue, but does the name Tawana Brawley strike a familiar note?
Carl Yanoch

Pick up the trash in Crane Street area

I would appreciate it if our government leaders would stop picking on Bumpy’s in Scotia and pick up some trash on Crane Street, 4th and 6th.
This is unacceptable that this area is one giant toilet bowl of covid trash. If the rioters and protesters have nothing better to do, they can come help clean the toilet known as Crane Street, as little children who happen to be Black have to walk in this covid trash.
Al Zanger


Trump abusing office for his personal gain

For students of U.S. history, the administrations of Ulysses Grant and Warren Harding stand out as the prime examples of corruption in our 244 years. Neither Grant nor Harding, though, were ever accused of personal wrongdoing; only members of their cabinets were involved in the Whiskey Ring and Teapot Dome scandals that plagued their presidencies.
In the case of Donald Trump, we have reached a new low in our history, with the president personally benefiting from his office and using the powers with which he has been entrusted to protect himself, as the commutation of Roger Stone’s sentence makes patently obvious.
We all have the right politically to support whomever we wish. That said, those still in Trump’s camp need to answer a simple question: What would they say if a Democratic president had remained inexplicably mute on the subjects of a raging pandemic, rampant racism, and Russian bounties on American servicemen and women, while using his powers to protect himself?
Dr. Roger H. Hull
The writer is President Emeritus, Union College and author of “How to Get Beyond Trump.”

America supports slavery elsewhere

Our history is so controversial. Our present so dictated. Our future is so uncertain.
We watch our nightly news and see protesters ripping down statues, and monuments which have stood for decades, or even centuries.
Parks, schools, streets, just about anything attached to any part of the Confederacy is being renamed. Christopher Columbus? Really?
Oh my have we still got work to do haven’t we?
Slavery was awful, wouldn’t you agree?
Some of you may be lucky enough to be reading this on your iPhone, perhaps sitting on a bench in your jeans from The Gap, wearing the new Nike Kobe Bryant Tribute 24’s, with your Tommy Hilfiger jacket, your Ralph Lauren polo on like a boss, sitting across from your Land Rover. Isn’t that nice.
Still care about slavery? Still think it doesn’t happen in the United States? Maybe it doesn’t, but we sure do assist in it happening elsewhere. They call it aiding and abetting. To me, slavery is just as sickening somewhere else.
All of the companies I listed above are involved in slave labor in China. Slavery does exist, and we all contribute to it, encourage it. It’s called greed.
Are you willing to give up your “stuff“ to stop the suffering? Or is it, like they say, “out of sight, out of mind?“ We should be outraged, but apparently we are not.
Brian Baldwin
Burnt Hills

Trump places politics over human lives

President Trump is demanding that all schools open in the fall.
Trump knows that school is the perfect environment for the spread of the virus, in the classroom, in the hallways, in the lunchroom and on the bus.
It seems that Trump wants the virus to spread. Even his position on masks is political and promotes the spread of the virus.
What Trump appears to want is to spread the virus. He appears to want a condition called herd immunity. This is a condition where the virus “burns out” due to the fact that a large majority of the population has gotten the virus and cannot spread it or get it again.
There is one big problem. There will be hundreds of thousands who will die and hundreds of thousands who will have long-term medical problems due to the virus. He apparently does not care.
He is more concerned about the politics and winning and definitely not concerned about the human toll.
John Dworak

McCalmon will be fresh voice in Albany

I am writing in support of Thearse McCalmon for District 49 of the New York State Senate.
Ms. McCalmon has an impressive record of lifelong education, receiving multiple degrees in several fields, and this year celebrated the high school graduation of one of her four children.
She also has a personal commitment to community activism. She has worked with the Underground Railroad History Project, has advocated for LGBTQ+ rights, women, Native American communities, and has spoken at recent events for Black lives around the Capital District.
As a physician, I am particularly in support of improving the quality of and access to health care. McCalmon supports the New York Health Act, which will ensure affordable health care to New Yorkers and protects reproductive healthcare rights for women. She includes a statement about nurse-to-patient ratios that will protect nurses and patients statewide.
McCalmon has developed policy statements that demonstrate a commitment to economic equity and environmental protection. These include protections for small business farmers, clean energy investments, affordable housing, increased minimum wage and infrastructure restoration.
It is time for new representation and a fresh perspective in the state Senate.
Stephanie Evans, MD
Burnt Hills

Trump is killing GOP base over masks

Apparently, those who refuse to wear masks are following the leadership of their Republican president who wants businesses, schools and everything else open.
Doesn’t the president realize that if it is Republicans who are refusing to wear masks and socially distance that he is essentially killing off his base?
Anita Paul

Dump Trump to get us out of this mess

 Well, the most narcissistic president of all time has gotten this country into a fine mess.
Due to President Trump’s disgraceful leadership and his corrupted administration, this country is suffering under a now raging pandemic and a broken economy.
President Kennedy once asked of his fellow Americans what they could do for their country. Wearing masks and social distancing would be one of them. This is a tiny sacrifice compared to what the Greatest Generation had to endure to defeat truly tyrannical regimes in order to ensure the freedoms that we have today.
To mistakenly extrapolate those freedoms to the supposed constitutional right of not wearing masks is a callously selfish abuse of those very freedoms, putting the lives of others including our brave doctors and nurses at risk.
Trump has epitomized that very selfish act. He is more concerned about the stock markets than he is with the numbers of COVID cases.
Let’s push Trump and his sycophants out of office. We need to put the lives of our people first. Only then will the economy fully recover.
Anthony Scalise

Need better vetting, independent reviews

Regarding Clyde Maughan’s July 9 letter (“Rules for police-citizen interaction.”) Nice try, Mr. Maughan, but I think most of your suggestions may make matters worse. Here’s what I’d like to see happen:
1. Require that all police and recruits take the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory. If test results show a lack of empathy, tell them to find another line of work.
2. Deep six the current police practice of investigating themselves. It never smells right. Instead, establish independent panels of investigators that are representative of society, i.e., 25% Black/brown, 50% female, etc. to investigate and make binding courses of action to resolve police/citizen disputes.
Malcolm Bryant
Saratoga Springs

Don’t prevent police from doing their duty

On July 8, new police reforms were announced by the mayor of Schenectady to ensure a police department the community “is proud of.”
The question the public should be asking is what “community” will be left if we continue to strip police of power and put it in the hands of those who resist arrest?
Not one city official has acknowledged that Patrolman Brian Pommer was patrolling alone on July 6 or that by being alone, he was at an immediate disadvantage to make an arrest. But did that stop him from doing his job? Of course not.
No one acknowledges that he attempted several de-escalation techniques with both the complainant and the suspect. When the victims make an eyewitness identification of the suspect, he questions the suspect in order to investigate the situation. The suspect refuses to comply and flees. He subdues the suspect until backup arrives, and the suspect resists arrest the entire time. The suspect tries to flee again once they get him to the police car. After all of that, Officer Pommer realizes his nightmare is just beginning.
This is what a police officer gets in return for investigating criminal mischief. City officials need to realize that the taxpaying members of this city deserve a police department that is ready, willing and able to protect them. A police officer should never have to make the decision they are all faced with today: Do nothing and avoid scrutiny or do your job and risk losing everything.
Rachael Ward
The writer is former deputy corporation counsel for the city of Schenectady.

Confederate flag is a symbol of treason

The U.S. Constitution mentions only three crimes: piracy, counterfeiting and treason, which it defines as “levying war” against the United States (Article III). What more shameful symbol of treason is there than the battle flag of the Confederacy that waged war against the United States?
Also, thanks to town historian Denis Brennan for his July 3 article (“Niskayuna not exempt from slavery’s ghost”) in “Your Niskayuna” about slavery in Niskayuna. His data-based narrative represents local history at its best.
Frank Donegan

Nisky intersection isn’t in Schenectady

On June 29, the Daily Gazette published Nancy May-Skinner’s letter (“Niskayuna intersection is dangerous”) of Niskayuna, concerning the intersection of Nott Street and Dean Street in the town of Niskayuna.
The author stated that as a concerned Schenectady County resident, she had called and discussed this issue with “the City Engineering Department.”
Perhaps the author was mistaken and had actually spoken with the town of Niskayuna Engineering Department, as this intersection is not in the city of Schenectady.
Christopher Wallin
The writer is the city engineer for the City of Schenectady.

Covid test experience was very positive

In this period of disruption, inconvenience and concern, it’s a pleasure to encounter a situation that warrants a good word and praise.
A week ago, our governor stated that he wanted all New York citizens, even those without COVID-19 symptoms, to be tested for the virus at no cost (either by insurance, state or county payment).
As a retired physician, I concluded that he was going to use this data in regard to continued “shut down” or progress of return to “normal.”
My wife was not anxious to comply, as she thought it would be a “madhouse,” but I felt that his recommendation was necessary and well considered for determining public health decisions.
We contacted the Schenectady County Health Department and easily made an appointment, which was quite prompt and carefully arranged on Brandywine Avenue in the parking lot opposite the Mosque. There was no wait, and our visit was carried out beautifully by high school or college student volunteers who were excellently informed and extremely courteous.
We agreed that the system was an unexpected pleasure that would contribute valuable data of the New York community.
We are glad to live here and it is nice to write about something good and well done.
Lyle W. Barlyn

Now, a Trump family member we can trust

At last, a Trump we can believe, respect and trust. Thank you, Mary Trump.
John Kucij

America needs new Divine Intervention

What took place in 1860/61 is repeating itself. The swamp, conspiracy, sedition, coup d’état, civil war. In 1860 the British conspired with the Confederacy to subvert the “great experiment;” in 2020 it is Communist China working against the United States.
America has a form of slavery, a slavery of the mind where critical thinking is discouraged. The ‘greater good’ has replaced preserving the Union. Greater good coupled with technology will bring forth fascism.  
The British are still helping the United States to destroy itself. The ‘Steele dossier’ was an overt intervention into our election process.
With friends like the British, who needs enemies?
Shelby Foote, esteemed historian stated the following, “Washington, D.C. has Northern charm & Southern efficiency” in 1860/61, SOS. Before the Civil War, 90% of people working in Washington, D.C., were Southerners, the ‘swamp’. It was a miracle that Lincoln survived. Divine intervention was at work.
Robert E. Lee commanded the Army of Northern Virginia. Today, the Army of Northern Virginia is the 17+ intelligence agencies with supporting cast in the Department of Justice that threaten the republic. I refer to them as the ‘alpha gang’.
Gen. Lee and his ‘ilk’ are denounced as traitors. What about the alpha gang? They are the essence of “pride without honor.”
Channel President Lincoln to understand the time we are living. Divine intervention is needed today, or the ‘republic’ will perish.
Edmond Day

Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion

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