Capital Region

Letters to the Editor Thursday, Aug. 19


Stop being selfish; Get covid vaccine

Some people refuse to get the COVID-19 vaccine. They think that this pandemic was manmade to wipe out older populations and to make money. These people seem to have lost their common sense, their sense of responsibility and feelings of compassion toward others. Hence they refuse being vaccinated because they don’t trust science, and doctors.
I agree— everyone is free to do what they want, but what about the common good? Responsibility toward family, the community, the nation and the well-being of the world’s population?
I think that those who refuse to get the COVID-19 vaccine are being foolish, but also arrogant, selfish, ignorant and lack common sense.
They’re foolish and ignorant because they deny facts and reality, they refuse to seek them, and instead believe in all kinds of conspiracies.
They’re arrogant because they believe that they know more than doctors and science. They’re selfish because they do what they want with no regard to the safety and health of others.
These skeptics fail to realize that vaccines have saved millions of people from certain death. Without vaccines we would not have defeated many diseases such as polio, malaria and many others.
Why do many still distrust vaccines and have become cynical and they lost compassion for self and for others? I suspect it is mostly selfishness, not caring for others.
It is time to stop being arrogant and foolish, and instead show compassion and a sense of civic responsibility.
Get vaccinated before it is too late.
Ottavio LoPiccolo

Surprised article excluded Johnson

I read the article (“Beloved, relevant Highlights celebrates 75 years”) posted from the Columbus Dispatch on Highlights Magazine in the Sunday Aug. 15 Gazette with much interest because Kent Johnson, CEO of Highlights, grew up in Schenectady.
He is the son of Karen B. Johnson, first woman Mayor of the city of Schenectady and who was on the Highlights Board of Directors.
I was surprised and disappointed The Gazette didn’t add a note at the end of the article pointing that out.
Kay S. Ackerman



Thoughts on three important topics

Lately I’ve noticed three things being bantered about:
1. The bogging down of moving forward in schools; 2. How to spend [taxpayer] money the city thinks is bottomless; and 3. The eternal use of playing a race card.
1. School Guidance: Open up in-school learning only!
All those that work for a school district; aides, administration, cafeteria, custodial, teachers, transportation, visitors, etc. wear a mask. All students are mask-optional. No ‘what ifs.’
2. Use of the Schenectady city [taxpayer paid] windfall of millions:
Do not use this money to fund another useless/senseless program that come next year you can’t fund without taxing residents more or having to cut necessary functions/services of the city.
3. The community socialist/activist new school board member:
You cannot keep playing the race card. Just throwing objections out there because of race is not a concrete solution.
The reason [possibly] six officers were sent to your auto accident was not because of your skin color.
Just look to Chicago and what happens when you send just two officers to an auto incident.
Gerald V. Marmuscak


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Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion


Ottavio LoPiccolo…yes, hyperindividualism has a dangerous foothold in our country now. I’m afraid we are too divided to overcome this pandemic. If over 600,000 dead Americans, now children dying, and overrun hospitals can’t convince people to get vaccinated, then we are in for much more suffering and death. We don’t need a foreign enemy to destroy our country…we’re doing it from the inside out. (Love your name, btw)!


Perhaps we cannot convince people to get vaccinated because we are going about it in the wrong way. We could start by apologizing for asking someone to take an action that they think risks their life so that we could go around mask free. We could try commending them for resisting great social pressure but from now on the cost of their future COVID treatment comes directly out of their unvaccinated pocket.


Mr. LoPiccolo: Thank you for your letter I couldn’t agree more. – I don’t understand why Republicans are making the CDC’s common sense, scientifically backed, life saving mask and vaccine recommendations a political issue. What is additionally upsetting is how people like 45 and Florida’s DeSantis strongly influence people against complying with these recommendations when they’ve both been vaccinated. The fact that these two hypocrites have had the most advanced medical treatments (not available to most Americans) after contracting the virus is the icing on the cake.

Joseph Vendetti


Great letter

Lou – I wish it was just republicans & conservatives (roughly 39% of population) bucking the vaccines but look at the piss poor NYC rates?

NYC which is primarily a Democratic Bastion is barely at 53%.

I watched the Schenectady School board meeting on TV and all these meat heads about masks and vaccines- we have to do one or the other folks. They don’t want to do either. Newspapers has reported Schenectady, Saratoga, Albany, Shen – all had parents complain about vaccines and/or masks – so you know dam well if they are complaining they haven’t been vaccinated.

That’s a lie, only 28% of Blacks are vaccinated so why is it racist to ask for a voter ID and not racist to tell 78% of Blacks that they can’t shop or travel without a vaccination card or vaccine passport? I’ll wait for your deflection.

One is a public health emergency due to a once-in-a-century global pandemic where one person’s poor decision can literally kill someone, and the other is a constitutionally protected right to participate in our democracy. Does that answer your question?

Matt, so Blacks can’t shop or move about? Racist but that’s the democrat way.

ChuckD By showing you how racist Democrats are towards Blacks you accuse me of being a racist. Trust me I am the furthest from a racist you will ever find in your life but I don’t have to prove anything to you. What I will say is whenever a democrat can’t give you an answer they turned to the old standby calling you a racist.


No Zachary what you are saying is a lie.
From the CDC
“Based on race/ethnicity data available for 58% of people who have received at least one vaccine dose as if August 16, 2020”:

Based on total US population:

White 61%
Black 12%
Hispanic 17%
Asian 6 %
Other 2%

When considering 60.1 % of the US population is white and 13.4 %. is Black let’s do some math:

Proportionately to % of ethnicity in US in relation to vaccines given.
98.5 % is where whites stand
89.5 % is where blacks stand

The overall % of Blacks getting vaccinated is 9% lower than Whites.

If you don’t understand talk to a mathematician.

Mr. Restifo, every source says that Black vaccination is under 30%, even this paper a couple of weeks had Blacks in NY at 24%. Your democrat math doesn’t work.

Zachary, as far as I can recollect, every single comment you ever made in these forums regarding race issues has had to do with taking away, denying or denigrating Blacks and other people of color.
Every. Single. Time.
Prove me wrong.


Let’s try again.

As per the CDC:
“Race/Ethnicity of people receiving a COVID-19 Vaccine in the U.S. as of August 16, 2021. Based on race/ethnicity data available for 58% of the people who have received at least one vaccine dose:”

White 61%
Black 12%
Hispanic 17%
Asian 6 %
Other 2%

Anyone wanting to do the math, go for it. Whites who comprise 60.1% of the total US population received 61% of the vaccine given. – Blacks who comprise 13.4 % of the population received 12% of the vaccine given.

Latest Data on COVID-19 Vaccinations by Race/Ethnicity | KFF


Additionally it’s not Democrats, but Republicans that push the “right of choice” issue. What they should be pushing to their constituents is, “wear a mask, get the vaccine.”

Joseph Vendetti

1/2 the US that hates masks and being told vaccines reminds me of the “cool” parents that allowed alcohol parties at their house in HS.

The parents that lay down the law and don’t allow that behavior are the vaccine takers and mask wearers because they can make the not popular but correct selection.

Zachary, don’t forget about African Americans who were used as lab rats during the Tuskegee Experiment and understandably have distrust.

William Aiken

For a more recent example why African-Americans might be reluctant to get the vaccine, then candidates, Kamala and Biden publicly opined that they wouldn’t trust a vaccine created under the Trump administration. Its the same vaccine that skeptics are rejecting today.

Joseph Vendetti

J – our country did horrible things to blacks, foster children (white, black, etc), disabled when it comes to testing, vaccines because the govt institutions served as their wards. They frequently signed off on electroshock therapy, experimental vaccines, etc.

Where we need these over paid blowholes of athletes to step up and say vaccines are safe, etc instead they aren’t getting vaccinated. Cancer survivor 1st baseman Rizzo from Yankees no vaccines- gets covid and misses 11 games.

I baffled – we can put stay at home orders into action, masks, but not vaccines?


In your last sentence change parents to president or governor and for this issue it would Biden and others vs FG and others like him. DeathSantis, Duecy, Abbott, Reeves and others.


The last statistic I saw had only 44% of republicans vaccinated while the Dems were in the 80’s. The unvaccinated have dug in their heels so it’s time they pay the price. No entry to any place with six or more people without proof of vaccination. Don’t leave it to the states either, with idiots like Abbott and DeSantis making stupid laws. The mandate should come from Biden since the majority favor vaccination restrictions and mask wearing, particularly in schools. Let the anti-vaxxers and unmasked warriors cry all they want. The majority and science rule.

Joseph Vendetti


I believe you are misinterpreting the data not purposely-

So I believe the data background is – there are 234 million white ppl in america, 79% are eligible (over 16) for vaccines & 61% of those eligible have received it – 115 million. There are 35 million black Americans in the US eligible for the vaccines and 12.1% got it – 4.3 million. Of the 71 million Hispanic Americans – 12 million have been fully vaccinated and so on.

Total all those numbers up and you come up with 163.9 million fully vaccinated as on 7/4/21.

We are pathetic group of humans that have this opportunity and pass it by.

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