New York

Letters to the Editor for Monday, Aug. 3

Your Voice

Senate Republicans get comeuppance

It’s ironic to read state Senate Republicans complaining of unfair redistricting processes.
I worked for Senate Democratic staff from 1996 to 2008.
During my time there, the GOP defied political and demographic gravity through:
1. The Canvass of Agreement: Raising hands instead of a formal vote on a Democratic bill brought up during debate on a Republican bill. Ergo, no public record.
2. Buy off Democratic senators to switch parties or Democratic assembly members to run as Republicans: Nancy Larraine Hoffman, Pedro Espada, Olga Mendez, Joe Robach and Stephen Kaufman.
3. Redistricting: First, split cities among two or three districts. Second, keep downstate seat population at about 315,000 or so, and upstate seats at less than 300,000. Third, add seats.
Then Deputy Majority Leader Dean Skelos told the New York Times in January 2002, ‘’We think we could go to 62, 63, even 68.’’
When the GOP reclaimed the majority in 2010, they created yet another decade of absurd maps.
Suburban Republicans in New York faced a reckoning in 2018.
What’s left of the Senate GOP shows abject adherence to Trump.
That and all of the GOP retirements leaves them no hope.
Michael Fondacaro

No justification for enslaving of others

 I don’t know if Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas is just stupid, racist or both.
His comment that “Slavery was a necessary evil” for the early days of our nation, may be the single most ignorant thing ever spoken by an elected official.
Forced labor built wealth for those that could afford to purchase enslaved people, and in the 18th and 19th century, most white people in America were subsistence farmers and could not afford to buy and keep forced laborers.
They may have chosen to turn a blind eye to its evil so as to not upset the status quo, since the wealthy and powerful were participants in the practice of human bondage.
Beyond that, forced labor is only one aspect of slavery and in my opinion, the least heinous.
The bigger and more long lasting issues are the depravity, degradation, deprivation and dehumanization of a race of people.
There was and is no justification for it and the sad fact is that there are some people in the country today that would enslave people if they thought they could get away with it.
Thomas Benson

Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion


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