Capital Region

Letters to the Editor Friday, May 28

PHOTOGRAPHER:

Opioid settlement $ must be locked in

New York state received more than $32 million from the opioid settlement with McKinsey & Co.
The funds were intended for use to combat the opioid epidemic in New York – services for prevention, treatment, harm reduction and recovery. Guess what happened? Two-thirds of the money went into New York’s general fund and the remaining one-third paid for medication-assisted treatment in our state prisons, at the same level as the previous year.
So, not only were the bulk of the funds diverted for other purposes, but what was used supplanted existing state funding.
New York will be receiving additional settlement dollars — dollars that need to be allocated to recovery services to benefit residents struggling with addiction and seeking recovery. Our citizens, our children, desperately need these services.
Additional opioid litigation settlement dollars must be placed in a lock box and dedicated to substance use recovery programs and services. OASAS must be consulted for direction on the use of the settlement dollars, as they have the experience and knowledge to administer the proceeds benefiting those most impacted by substance use disorder.
We cannot allow the settlement dollars to supplant existing recovery service funding or to be utilized to cover gaps in the general state budget.
There is a crisis at hand, and the state has a moral imperative to direct these settlement dollars to recovery services, in an effort to give better access and hope to those who struggle with addiction and those that love them.
Maureen Provost
Saratoga Springs

Stefanik has done right by veterans

Rep. Elise Stefanik is best for our vets. Many of you already have some idea about Elise’s record of results for veterans and troops.
She has recovered thousands upon thousands of benefits for NY-21 veterans. She worked with President Trump to drastically improve the quality of care the VA provides. She successfully protected Fort Drum from sequestration, and more recently has positioned Fort Drum for a new missile defense installation.
Elise has not once taken a vote against our troops and vets, nor once taken a vote that weakens this great nation’s national security.
For all of this, I’d like to thank Elise. As a veteran who served in the United States Marine Corps, I would like Elise to know that many of us have been watching her, and know she’s done a great job
I know she will take this same pro-America, pro-vets mindset with her into leadership of the Republican Party. This is a good thing for our troops and for our nation. It’s time we have leadership again who really cares for our troops and vets and will get busy working to improve their healthcare, benefits — and also the security of our country.
William Crowe
Greenfield Center

 

Feature excluded Blacks, Mt. Pleasant

Very nice memories in The Gazette’s May 24 “Capital Region Scrapbook” page from every high school EXCEPT Mont Pleasant.
Also, every picture shows smiling teens EXCEPT the African-American couple.
Gazette, you can do better.
Diane Sanders Hombach
Schenectady

Be specific when using critical labels

In the movie, “Ship of Fools,” one character announces, “I’m not anti-Semitic; I love Arabs.”
It’s a nice point: all those Palestinians, pretty much, are Semitic.
Samaritans (Israelites of old, and still despised by Judeans) are Semitic. Arabs are Semitic. Egyptians are Semitic. And so on.
In short, the term “anti-Semitic” is so broad a term as to be meaningless.
If we are going to speak abusively of people, shouldn’t we find more clearly identifying labels?
Donald Jenner
Scotia

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Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion

62 Comments

No Republican can again claim to be pro-America or pro-police if they voted against an independent, bi-partisan commission to investigate the January 6th insurrection and attack on our democracy. This includes Elise Stefanik.

William Aiken

Matt, l

Everyone saw for themselves with their own eyes what happened on Jan. 6th. What don’t you know that a 9/11 style commission would uncover? Thus is all about gamesmenship. The Dems can’t run on their policies. And they could careless that Antifa and BLM riots burn down our cities for six months. The Dems can only go after president Trump. Without him to blame everything on, they have with nothing to offer voters.

jclark124

What don’t we know about Jan 6th? PLENTY!
https://www.justsecurity.org/76113/investigating-jan-6-key-unanswered-questions-for-congress-and-media-to-ask/

The gop are COMPLICIT by encouraging or being silent about the Big Lie, possibly giving “tours,” protecting Big Daddy who hijacked their party, and now lying about the seriousness of that horrendous day. The gop admitted this would hurt them in the midterms…WHY? Because many were involved and/or don’t want to make their Dear Leader angry. The gop are disgracefully POLITICAL and are sickenly shatting on the Oath they took to defend and protect us.

William Aiken

Can you be specific about what you think a commission would turn up that we don’t already know? If you can’t, you’re acknowledging that such a commission would be a fishing expedition, used by Dems as a club to bludgeon Trump.

What about Russia collusion? Was that a big lie? You’ve got to hand to the Dems for their political gamesmanship. They have the advantage, though. A media aligned with their agenda to push the big lie that Russia stole the 2016 election. This unholy alliance was key in the Dems winning back the house in 2018. So I made two salient points. But I suspect they’ll go unanswered in your reply.

jclark124

William, did you read the article with all the questions? No, the Russians did not steal the election, but they sure as hell interfered (with 45’s help), spreading misinformation (Cruz was just caught spreading Russian propaganda). The media is aligned with the party saying what is obvious!
We all saw what happened on 9/11, so no commission was necessary, according to you. You are not paying attention to the dems policy goals that Biden addresses live every week. 1st was an incredible response to the pandemic which is bringing back the economy (with obvious bumps along the way). Now he’s pushing for generational changes with infrastructure, building back a strong middle class, social/racial justice, etc. Where have you been? The gop are the party of NO–even when the dems compromise and give them what they want. Under 45, McConnell blocked over 450 bills passed by the House. What was the platform of the last RNC? They didn’t have anything! Whatever their cult leader wanted. gop’s policies are grift and grievance, stuck in the past!

William Aiken

Yes, I did read those questions from Just Secure, a leftist, Trump hating website. I don’t find them creditable. Just as you would dismiss source from the NY Post or Fox news.

I was hoping you could say what you hope a commission would uncover in your own words.

Joseph Vendetti

Jclark:

Nothing for Nothing but do you think its kind of ironic that we (CIA, other quasi intelligence groups, the US, etc) have been interfering in elections, staging coups, since the late 1940’s?

Yet when Russia, China, or whom ever starts attempting the same thing in ours we get all bent out of shape?

RAYMOND HARRIS

Republican John Katko of NY summarized the reason for the commission: “The American people and the Capitol Police deserve answers and action as soon as possible to ensure that nothing like this ever happens again,” Katko said.

Katko said the commission would investigate what information was known before the attack, why Capitol Police were left unprepared and why it took so long for reinforcements to arrive.

“This is about facts, it’s not partisan politics,” he said. “We would’ve never got to this point if it was about partisan politics.”

jclark124

Joseph, I believe we try to spread democracy around the world, and replace those that are a threat.
45s team had over 150 interactions with Russians, who are sowing division and doubt on our Republic. 45 is on THEIR side, even agreeing with Putin and trusting that lying, corrupt, murderer over US intelligence.

Would you please explain how you came to the conclusion that Just Secure is “a leftist, Trump hating website”?

jclark124

Pro 45 outlets probably don’t want to ask questions. There are too many, so look them up yourself. One troubling reason to investigate relates to what McCarthy, McConnell and other gop said on that night when we almost lost our form of Gov’t. They held 45 accountable, but now? Nothing to see here, move along! The fact that you don’t have/want questions makes you part of this coverup…of the most serious attack on our democracy. Shameful.

No, it’s about right-wing CYA. That’s it.
Everyone can see it. And the resistance is so absurd and juvenile it makes you all appear to be all the more guilty.
A commission, and the results of the Mueller investigation will get to the bottom of what happened and you all’s behavior. Republicans cannot run from this and they certainly can’t hide their heads in the sand.

jclark124

Fred, no one is giving a pass to protesters causing damage. They were arrested immediately, unlike the “pass” given to the Insurrectionists, unprepared defense and few arrests that day. BLM is an actual cause based on plenty of data of how unfairly people of color are treated–and are sick and tired after 400 years. The Insurrection falls COMPLETELY on 45, that’s why we hate his guts…he is a clear and present danger to our democratic republic–stirring up white supremacists and domestic terrorists. That’s why we need a commission, but the gop are frightened of being exposed, frightened of what their Dear Leader will do to them. It’s pathetic and scary!

RAYMOND HARRIS

Laughable. He has lost part of his republican base and doesn’t have a clue how to expand it. Do you want him to lose by more than 10 million in 2024. He might be in jail by that time, too. Better start thinking about alternatives.

LOUIS RESTIFO

“You’re right Trump is a clear and present danger to” destroy American democracy.

jclark124

Lmao! The American people clearly rejected 45 after seeing and hearing for themselves how awful he was…even if they liked some of his policies. The only reason he did as well as he did, was because of the gop, faux entertainment, and Barr protecting and enabling him. The dems took their oaths seriously and proved why he deserved to be impeached…twice!…even with Republican support the 2nd time. 45 lost the House, the Senate, and the WH…he’s a LOSER, but you claim he’ll win back the WH? Lol!

Love to hear about your strategy.
So far it doesn’t look like “winning”, what with all the defections.

LOUIS RESTIFO

Fred,

One very simple question:

Do you believe there are people in America that treat Black people unfairly and look down upon them simply because they are black? ANSWER!!!!!!

LOUIS RESTIFO

Yes I do but not near to the extent of the reverse. I’m not seeing or reading very much about Black cops shooting and murdering White people. Additionally I don’t recall White people not being served in a restaurant solely because the were White.

And unlike you and Fred I answered.

LOUIS RESTIFO

Now it’s your turn Zachary:

Do you believe Black and White people are now equally discriminated against in America? Please Answer.

According to the FBI Whites are killed by Blacks 16.1% of the time with Blacks being killed by Whites about 8% of the time. I believe that Whites have been discriminated against for decades with affirmative action and it’s only getting worse. Lori Lightfoot of Chicago will not take interviews with White reporters. According to any democrat and POC minorities can’t be racist. Critical race theory and the rest are being used to divide this country.

LOUIS RESTIFO

Zachary,

No bs, simple yes or question.

Do you believe Black and White people are now equally discriminated against in America?

FRED BARNEY

The federal government is now discriminating against w2hite people. Do they do that against Blacks?

If you look at the first letter Democrats are allowing business executives to buy their way out of jail with other peoples money. Since that is now acceptable no one is safe from the authoritarians

jclark124

William, talk about bludgeoning 45…how about BENGHAZI, BENGHAZI! $7 million with how many investigations? Let’s see if drumpf has any balls like Hillary who testified for11 hours. EMAILS, EMAILS! Even 45s administration went after her (talk about beating a dead horse!), and came up with ZILCH. But they successfully smeared her, so stfrigup!

Joseph Vendetti

Being in business over 30 years I’ve learned its always best to take the high road, tell my clients about our plans, policies, successes & sometimes lessons learned (failures) and leave my competitions record out of our presentations.

Both political parties have stopped this & we the citizens, the tax payers, are the ones that suffer.

FRED BARNEY

I offer a simple solution to greatly lessen rape. If the state provides every adult female with a pistol I find it to be reasonable to expect the incidence of rape to dramatically decline.

LOUIS RESTIFO

Oh my God!

Perhaps we should give every airline passenger a gun prior to takeoff so as to prevent hijacking.

FRED BARNEY

I offered a solution to lessen rape. Could it be that you are making an issue about interfering with some men’s sexual preferences

LOUIS RESTIFO

I guess the best way to answer that question in a similar manner as to where it came from would be to say, the sky is blue, most chickens live on farms, vacuum cleaners suck and the sun is hot.

LOUIS RESTIFO

The difference in Republican and Democratic leaders:

DEMOCRATS
Washington Post:
“Senate Democrats lined up alongside Sen. Josh Hawley (Mo.), one of their least-favorite Republicans, to support a measure urging the Biden administration to declassify intelligence on whether the novel coronavirus originated in a Chinese lab. A Democratic-led House subcommittee is pledging an investigation into the virus’s origins, including the lab’s safety record.”

The Democrats are wanting to do this even though it may very well leave “egg on their faces”. It’s about fact and transparency Regardless of how things unfold.

REPUBLICANS:
Washington Post:
“Senate Republicans are poised to block the creation of a special commission to study the deadly Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, dashing hopes for a bipartisan panel amid a GOP push to put the violent insurrection by Donald Trump’s supporters behind them.”

Republicans block fact and transparency if they believe it’s not in their best interest.

Joe, how can we come to the middle when Republicans constantly refuse to budge an inch?

Then maybe you can see why there’s so much concern for what’s called “both siderism”. The notion that both sides do it (whatever it is) so all are equally guilty.

All are not equally guilty.

As I pointed out to you the other day wrt the Biden economic stimulus packages, not a single Republican could support what was overwhelmingly popular, even with their own constituents. And now they’re hanging their tiny hats on it as if they ushered it in.

Republicans are quick to point to Hunter Biden and Hillary Clinton as guilty…of something. But they’ve had years and countless hearings (last I heard it was 40+) to try to prove it and they’ve got nothing. Meanwhile Mueller showed there was crime a plenty surrounding Republicans’ new savior, if anyone wanted to pursue it. He did not because he claimed his hands were tied to do so. Even so, 10 were indicted and 12 referred to other prosecutors as a result.

Lastly, of course, is the 2020 election and we all know what happened, and is still happening there. Meanwhile Clinton graciously conceded within 24 hours of the 2016 election.
Not saying the Dems are without fault, I could find plenty. But NOTHING as nefarious and ill-willed and anti-American as what the Republicans are spearheading.
Both sides are not doing that, only one.

LOUIS RESTIFO

William Aiken
May 28th, 2021
Yes, I did read those questions from Just Secure, a leftist, Trump hating website. I don’t find them creditable. Just as you would dismiss source from the NY Post or Fox news.

I was hoping you could say what you hope a commission would uncover in your own words.

~~~~

How about some answers and closure for Gladys Sicknick, the grieving mother of fallen Officer Brian Sicknick.

So tell me William, would you want more answers if this was your dead son? ANSWER!!!

LOUIS RESTIFO

Your quote William:

“So I made two salient points. But I suspect they’ll go unanswered in your reply.”

Now please answer the above question!

Maybe the number one thing Americans should take away from today. To some it will be hyperbole, to most it should be etched in our brains:

“Your reminder that in November 1923, Hitler’s attempted coup failed. But no one was held accountable. Ten years later, he took over Germany.”

“Trump’s January 2020 coup failed. But Republicans blocked an independent commission to hold leaders accountable.”

-Robt. Reich

LOUIS RESTIFO

Tell it to Zach, part of what he posted on yesterday’s line:

“I happen to love history because without it we can’t set our paths forward without remembering our past.”

RAYMOND HARRIS

Attorney General Merrick Garland has announced a series of six steps the Department of Justice is taking to improve efforts to combat hate crimes. They include measures like increasing resources and coordination, facilitating the expeditious review of hate crimes, designating both civil and criminal assistant US attorneys as local civil rights coordinators, and expanding access to different languages in the department. The steps Garland outlined are intended to help the department implement the Covid-19 Hate Crimes Act, which President Joe Biden signed into law earlier this month.

What the report didn’t say was that under Trump and AG Barr, these efforts and resources were gutted.

RAYMOND HARRIS

News Alert: Biden releases his $6 trillion budget:
President Joe Biden on Friday proposed a $6 trillion budget for fiscal year 2022, laying out details of a proposed dramatic increase in federal spending that serves as the underpinning of an economic agenda that seeks to transform the American economy as the country emerges from dual public health and economic crises.
The budget proposal, which is an opening bid in negotiations with Congress and is expected to change before being signed into law, calls for the most sustained period of spending in more than half a century.

Go big Joe. Let’s out compete the Chinese.

Joseph Vendetti

Clark –

Do you remember when Iran stormed and took our embassy workers hostage in 1979. It was because they were sick of us meddling in their business. We have supported the backing of one Ayatollah over others – so I wish it had to do with just spreading democracy.

Some of the CIA “influencers” have done it for arms, for drug cartels – we are not and should not be the worlds police force.

We ended the cold war with Russia by funding and arming rebel fighters in Afghanistan. Little did we know – the RPGs, AK47s, techniques would be used against us for the last 20 yearsz

LOUIS RESTIFO

Regarding Russia and trump:

The bottom is that Russia is not an an ally of the United States of America and trump never had a disparaging word to say about Putin and his dictatorial leadership. Additionally Russia/Putin desperately wanted trump to win the presidential election.

By not admitting the blatantly obvious implications, your fooling no one but yourselves.

LOUIS RESTIFO

Joe, being more the the political middle of the road kind of guy that you are, I would truly like your take on the Democrat/Republican issue I presented earlier. – Thanks

Joseph Vendetti

Lou:

I wish I had that answer Lou – politicians in previous generations, decades, years have all had differences – somehow we have managed to act cordially, respectful, and get bi-partisan things done.

LOUIS RESTIFO

Well Joe, I believe the GOP of old is gone. The example I presented shows their lack of willingness to be transparent if not favorable to their agenda as compared to the left. In my opinion they are now inflexible and unwilling to step toward the middle on any issues. Additionally what they are attempting to do with voting laws is only one example of their blatant corruption.
As Chuck indicated the Democrats are certainly not without fault, but the Republicans make them look like a bunch of Mother Teresas.

From the Columbus Dispatch:

Josh Mandel’s Senate campaign sees exodus of fundraisers, sources say

Three fundraisers recently resigned from Republican Josh Mandel’s U.S. Senate campaign, prompting questions about the strength of his fundraising operation, according to Republican sources close to the campaign.

Mandel is on his second joint fundraising agreement of the 2022 cycle. He started out with Delaware County GOP on March 14 but switched to the Shelby County Republican Party on May 3, according to Federal Elections Commission records. Delaware County GOP Chairman Steven Cuckler could not be reached for comment and the Mandel campaign declined to elaborate why the change was made.

This marks Mandel’s fifth statewide run in 12 years.

Mandel is on his second joint fundraising agreement of the 2022 cycle. He started out with Delaware County GOP on March 14 but switched to the Shelby County Republican Party on May 3, according to Federal Elections Commission records. Delaware County GOP Chairman Steven Cuckler could not be reached for comment and the Mandel campaign declined to elaborate why the change was made.

On the campaign trail, Mandel has promised to “never take a knee in the culture wars.” He has tried to pick up support from Trump voters with attacks on the press, calling U.S. Rep. Anthony Gonzalez a traitor after Gonzalez voted to impeach Trump, and bashing Gov. Mike DeWine and his former health director Dr. Amy Acton.

He also sponsored a Dr. Seuss book drive in March after the author’s estate opted to stop printing some of his works that used racial and ethnic stereotypes, which triggered a short-lived controversy among conservatives irate over cancel culture.

LOUIS RESTIFO

All kidding aside I believe “they,” starting with trump are guilty.

“Definition: In Article III, Section 3 of the United States Constitution, treason is specifically limited to levying war against the US, or adhering to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort.”

“Penalty: U.S. Code Title 18: Death, or not less than 5 years’ imprisonment (minimum fine of $10,000, if not sentenced to death). Any person convicted of treason against the United States will lose the right to hold public office in the United States.”

As far fetched as it may sound another reason to block the investigation.

LOUIS RESTIFO

Hey Ray, being sarcastic with underling truth in regards to criminal activity is “Ignorant” but committing the actual crimes is real smart.

LOUIS RESTIFO

Zachary,

Off topic I know and don’t care, Please answer.

No bs, simple yes or no question: Do you believe Black and White people are now equally discriminated against in America?

In light of the latest Republican display of ethical bankruptcy today by blocking a 1/6 commission, I have to wonder where are all our oh-so-heroic and noble law enforcement organizations are.
Their absence and deafening silence on the abuse LEOs took at the Capitol is noted. Thin blue line, my _____.

LOUIS RESTIFO

William Aiken
May 28th, 2021
Yes, I did read those questions from Just Secure, a leftist, Trump hating website. I don’t find them creditable. Just as you would dismiss source from the NY Post or Fox news.
I was hoping you could say what you hope a commission would uncover in your own words.
~~~~
How about some answers and closure for Gladys Sicknick, the grieving mother of fallen Officer Brian Sicknick.

So tell me William, would you want more answers if this was your dead son? PLEASE ANSWER!

I’m not going to let this one slide.

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