Trump squandered opportunity to serve
What a shame that Donald Trump, elected to be our president in 2016 that vested him with great power to do good, used his position, great energy and good health, to divide the people and sow distrust about many of our intuitions and forward thinking policies.
He attacked our intelligence agencies for uncovering facts about Russian involvement in the 2016 election. He decimated the EPA, the agency that studied and warned us about the dangers of air pollution and climate change.
But, as always ignoring science, he canceled the requirements for better automobile gas mileage along with many other environmental regulations.
Instead, he could have organized a save and plant the trees national effort; since trees are the most efficient and least costly method of removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
He could have used the early information given to him by the Chinese that the covid virus is very deadly, very infectious and spread through the air from person to person. So, he could have warned the nation about that and urged them to wear a mask when out and about. But he exhibited and preached the opposite and ignored the advice of the CDC. These actions contributed to the deaths of more than 300,000 of our citizens.
Instead of using his life’s energies to do good things, he squandered four years of his and our country’s life. What a shame — very sad.
Dr. Dale M. Brown
On vaccine, Cuomo must serve all NYers
Sara Foss’s recent columns (Jan. 3 “Slow vaccine rollout cause for alarm” and Jan. 5 “Why has state’s vaccine rollout been slow?”) have been spot on. If we are dependent on vaccine distribution for a return to normalcy, we are in serious trouble.
I was fortunate enough to receive the vaccine recently from the good folks at Ellis, whose operation moved like a well-oiled machine. However, with at least 10 stations manned with personnel ready to administer shots, I don’t think I witnessed more than three others vaccinated in the 30 or so minutes I was there.
Those empty chairs can only mean that either the demand for the vaccine is low, or that we have run through those qualified in this tier of recipients. I choose to believe the latter.
If vaccine distribution is to be directed at the state level, then it is obvious that the time line would be dictated by the needs of New York City.
I would argue, however, that we would need far less time to vaccinate those front-line medical workers in Schenectady, Montgomery, Saratoga, even Albany counties than we would need in New York City.
Distribution should be determined at the county level, dependent on their demand and needs.
I encourage the governor to knock off the damn grandstanding and do what is right for New Yorkers — all New Yorkers. After all, I’m pretty sure President-elect Biden already has a job in mind for you.
Will we remember lessons of election?
Several senators and dozens of congressmen objected to the certified Electoral College vote. This is a direct attack on our constitutional electoral process.
The president and the congressional representatives have each taken the constitutional oath: “…to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”
Timothy Snyder’s book “On Tyranny” has 20 lessons from the 20th century. The first three lessons are:
1. Do not obey in advance. Most of the power of authoritarianism is freely given. In times like these, individuals think ahead about what a more repressive government will want, and then offer themselves without being asked. A citizen who adapts in this way is teaching power what it can do.
2. Defend institutions. It is institutions that help us to preserve decency. They need our help as well. Institutions do not protect themselves. So, choose an institution you care about and take its side.
3. Beware the one-party state. The parties that remade states and suppressed rivals were not omnipotent from the start. They exploited a historic moment to make political life impossible for their opponents. So, support the multi-party system and defend the rules of democratic elections.
The president and his supporters have violated their oaths and declared themselves the enemy of the will of the people and the enemy of democracy. Will we remember the lessons from the 20th century or are we doomed to re-learn them?
Investigate questions raised during election
Although I was not old enough to vote in this past election, watching what unfolded at the beginning of November was appalling.
In short, I am deeply concerned about the integrity of our most recent election.
For more than 30 years now, Democrats have objected to every single Republican-won presidential election. Why now is this call to debate so absurd? According to the left’s history, it’s common practice. And now more than ever, we deserve to know if our fundamental right to vote is being ignored or infringed in any capacity.
The American people deserve a debate in the House of Representatives in order to call attention to the security of our election. When states like Pennsylvania decide to ignore their own election laws, we must know more. When social media companies decide to block stories of credible evidence of unusual family connections with foreign countries, we must know more. When our fellow Americans swear on a Bible that they saw irregularities, and testify before state legislatures, we must know more.
Indeed, we must know more and bring to light any and every concern of irregularities from this past election in order to preserve our most sacred right for future elections. I certainly stand by Congresswoman Stefanik’s decision to object, and I am proud we have a representative who truly cares about our democracy and our right to a free and fair election.
Improve rights by fixing election laws
The various news reports about the ethical behavior and code of conduct by state governments’ board of elections indicates there is a need to improve our voting laws.
Candidates and elected officials for executive and legislative positions of municipal, state and federal governments need to equally adhere to Rules of Professional Conduct as elected/appointed judicial positions.
Granted behavior of various political parties know their usual behavior will violate proper conduct assigned to elections commissioners and to court officers. Therefore, to sustain equal protection and common defense of our democratic voting system a definition of integrity for all candidates and officials is required.
Improvement of existing definitions established through the state Commission on Judicial Conduct for elected/appointed judges needs to be a beginning model for candidates to executive and legislative offices within our federal, state and municipal governments.
Our democratic voting system requires agreement among candidates and elected officials to know and understand legal definitions of ethical integrity and enhancing reasonable good faith against fraudulent behavior.
We need to protect our voting rights with improved election laws.
Stefanik bears stink of pro-Trump crowd
Some of the stink of the pro-Trump extremists who stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6 in order to prevent the certification of the election deserves to rub off on Elise Stefanik.
She has cynically amplified false claims of electoral irregularities in order to stoke her Trumpist base, and she continued to do so even after the House of Representatives had to be evacuated and was occupied by people animated by the falsehoods that she has been stoking.
Her-mealy mouthed denunciations of the violence aside, by objecting to the certification of Pennsylvania’s electoral votes just hours after the Capitol had been overrun by extremists who parroted the same objections, she has clearly demonstrated that she values her own political interests over the nation’s interest.
I don’t think, at this point, she’s capable of shame, and I’m not confident that she’ll pay any political price for it. But when the history books are written about this period, she’ll be a small and sad footnote to this disgraceful episode.
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