Not getting money’s worth in Niskayuna
It is discouraging to see that our taxes in Niskayuna are going up again. What exactly are we seeing with these increases? For one, I am not exactly sure.
Since Fieldstone Acres opened on Consaul Road, our water taxes have gone through the roof. I believe the HOA fees paid by those who live there should accommodate any water and sewage issues caused by the integration into the town sewer system.
Since we started paying for lawn and leaf pick up, I see less service than in the surrounding townships. Let’s not even discuss loose leaf pick up. In December, I shouldn’t have to see leaves raked into the road and over the white line from inconsiderate people. These leaves do become hazards when they are wet and cold.
So before we just go around hiking up taxes, let’s start to monitor how the Town Board is spending our money. Let’s cut the $10,000 bonus for early retirements, the overtime paid for town workers to pick up our leaves on weekends, and contractual increases. Let’s maybe have someone look at the books and see where we can cut costs, or maybe sign non-binding contracts.
I think this is the reason we are stuck with Spectrum/ Time Warner Cable. Competitive contacting is meant to save consumers money.
While the town’s financial circumstances may be related to COVID-19, irresponsible spending by raising our taxes again is not the way. This pandemic cannot be to blame for every reckless decision made.
Let’s all focus on reducing our anger
Why all this anger? Where does it come from? I don’t remember it being as pronounced as it has been lately.
For instance: the insurgency at our Capitol building on Jan.6, the challenge within the stock market. But it’s not just in the United States. Anger is showing up globally: the recent protest in Russia, the uprising in Myanmar.
We all know that anger leads to hatred, and hatred spills over into violence. Then of course, violence begets more anger. Anger, anger, go away.
I’m trying to figure out why so many people are angry in our country. Is it political divisiveness? Is it the uncertainty of the pandemic? Are the events we see on television and the internet showing us that injustice is prevalent?
Sometimes anger, under control, can be productive. It can lead to positive motivation and eventually accomplishment. Anger, out of control can’t be a good thing. In this country though, it’s beginning to shake the foundation of our democracy.
How can anger be managed? Where do we go from here? If there is “an opposite” of anger, maybe that is on which we must focus.
Stockade residents: Be glad for no tickets
My letter is in response to the Feb. 9 article in The Gazette (“Metroplex backs 2 street changes’’) about alternate side parking on Union Street in the Stockade.
I have personally seen alternate side parking enforced with tickets in the Bellevue, Goose Hill and Mont Pleasant neighborhoods. At 9 a.m. when cars have to be moved to the opposite side, traffic enforcement is on the job.
So instead of Stockade residents complaining about enforcement, they should feel lucky they haven’t been ticketed in six years.
Don’t just talk about White Supremacy
With colleges and universities back in session, we are again hearing through various social media calls from professors and students for an end to “White Supremacy.” (Is it “woke” to capitalize the “W” in “White”?)
To that end I have a modest proposition.
All professors — with emphasis on those in Ivy league schools — who are demanding an end to “White Supremacy” should immediately resign their positions, demand that those positions be turned over to persons of color, preferably women or transgenders, and take lower paying jobs outside of the teaching profession. Perhaps they could do janitorial work on the campuses.
Likewise, white students calling for the end of white supremacy should quit campuses and demand that their slots — along with any and all financial assistance — be filled by students of color, again with the emphasis on women and transgenders, and then register at one of the many small junior colleges scattered across the country and take jobs in various services such as fast-food restaurants to pay their bills.
Think of how rapidly these actions would not only diversify campuses but would demonstrate to all minorities in this country the willingness of so many in academia to make a real commitment to ending white supremacy and privilege. Or in simpler terms, to put their money where their mouths are.
Do I hear any agreement with my proposition?
Deniers can’t deny facts about Trump
Trump supporters continue to ignore facts by claiming that we, those who believe no one is above the law, that the Constitution must be followed, and that Mr. Trump’s lies led to the unnecessary deaths of hundreds of thousands and perpetrated blatant racism hate Trump.
No, I don’t hate Donald Trump. I just see an incompetent charlatan who sold the White House, a racist liar. I invite these deniers to actually look at these facts:
1. Got $400,000 from Mr. Goya, then staged a photo of himself in the Oval Office with Goya products;
2. Failed to protect Americans from covid; discouraged masks and social distancing, unnecessarily costing hundreds of thousands of lives;
3. Didn’t take the presidential salary, but played golf more than any other president, his outings costing taxpayers over $150 million dollars;
4. “Good people on both sides?” his quote after racists attacked peaceful protesters; “us and them” divisiveness promoted racism and political polarity;
5. Cleared a peaceful protest to have a photo-op in front of a church, holding a Bible;
6. Never put his personal holdings in trust as his predecessors did, and made money for his facilities, billing the government and his campaign millions for security and campaign workers to stay at his facilities;
7. Lied about the election and siphoned off millions of contributions to the election “defense” fund to his personal PAC;
8. Has never taken personal responsibility.
There’s more. Trumpettes have enough to digest. They won’t. They’ll claim I hate Trump.
Bruce S. Trachtenberg
The writer is a former town justice.
Officer caught in act of compassion
On Feb. 2, I had to go to the city of Schenectady at around 10:30 a.m. It was the day that it snowed about six inches.
I was waiting for the light at the corner of State and Clinton when I observed a young Schenectady police officer helping an elderly gentleman with a cane, across a snowbank that was left by a plow.
The officer was holding the gentleman by the arm and watching both ways for traffic as they slowly made their way over the snowbank. It was such a touching sight that after my business that day I went back through downtown to see if I could find that officer to commend him for his courteous behavior.
Unfortunately, I didn’t see him on my way back home. I hope that he sees this letters, recognizes himself, and realizes that his act of compassion did not go unnoticed.
Thanks to that young officer and to all of law enforcement who put their lives at risk for us every day. Thanks to their families as well for being supportive of what they do. Be safe.
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