Sympathy for suicide attempt depends on if there are victims
Re Oct. 22 letter, “Failed suicide attempt merited treatment, not arrest and time in jail”: Judi Weatherhead needs to analyze all the facts of teen suicide.
If the suicide and/or attempt involves people/property/animals, then jail is definitely warranted. Compassion “should be given” to a person who has severe mental health problems and believes that suicide is the only alternative.
But how about the victims involved in these suicides or attempted suicides? In one recent case in Rotterdam, Ryan Ramroop, who was driving over 100 mph, slammed into a home, almost killing the occupants. He thought he was mature enough to drive, but the signs of immaturity were observed when he attempted to kill himself. The signs of suicide are always very blatant. There is always someone to reach out to for help.
In the case Judi Weatherhead referred to in her letter, the Niskayuna police no doubt knew the facts and believed they would find professional assistance for that teen.
Jail for any person trying to kill themselves with a 3,000-pound vehicle is no different than the drunk driver killing someone who shares the same road. Jail is the place for these offenders if they violate other citizens’ freedoms.
Our criminal justice system needs to treat and evaluate any and all crimes individually, but [people] still need to follow all the laws on the books. Remember who the true victim is; the person who has been violated.
Joyce F. Easton
Don’t be too quick to protest gas pipelines
Being somewhat familiar with pipelines, their necessity and usefulness, I would like to express my views.
The first Tennessee pipeline in this area was installed in the early 1950s, and is still operating without any glitches that I know of.
My humble residence is 85 feet from the right-of-way that now has four lines running across our property. Three are Kinder Morgan and the fourth is Iroquois Pipeline.
My family and I have a good feeling for [playing] a small part in helping society to benefit from this energy source, which is less polluting. This is the more environmentally sound method of transportation of any type of fuel for mankind’s use: heat, electricity, manufacturing of many goods and fertilizer to grow our crops. How about the land taxes we pay? The pipeline companies also pay taxes on that same acreage on a per-foot basis.
I would like to know how many people who now have a pipeline right-of-way on their property are now resisting this proposed venture.
Richard E. Ogsbury
No need to rededicate Kosciuszko Bridge
It appears the Thaddeus Kosciuszko Bridge on the Northway has attracted a bit of attention within the past several months, due to its reconstruction.
In 1977, the local Polish American Congress formed a committee for the purpose of naming the bridge in honor of Gen. Kosciuszko. Resolutions of support were obtained from the towns of Halfmoon and Colonie, and the state Department of Transportation. Members of the state Senate and Assembly sponsored an act of the Legislature, signed into law by Gov. Hugh T. Carey on July 21, 1981, and the Thaddeus Kosciuszko Bridge was dedicated on May 3, 1982.
Those who continue to serve on this committee find no specific reason for the bridge to be rededicated, as suggested in an Oct. 15 letter by Carol Krupski Pingelski Hotaling.
We are grateful to the Gazette for having referred to the Kosciuszko Bridge by its proper name in several recent articles, but find it disappointing that other media outlets, especially certain local radio talk show hosts, continue to refer to it as Twin Bridges. We may only assume that this type of omission is due to difficulty in the pronunciation of the general’s name, and not as a form of discrimination.
Theresa Kuziara Bunk
The writer is president of the Polish American Congress, central division of New York State.
Romney clueless, cruel when it comes to women
One has to ask how long Romney has had his head in the sand with regard to women’s issues.
He made it perfectly clear that he would be more than happy to cut funding to Planned Parenthood. He will deny benefits for contraception to be paid by employees’ insurance and probably cut much funding that ensures education safety and medical awareness for young teens and women who so desperately need these services. He also wishes to cut food stamps.
At the same time, Mr. Romney is placing all the blame on parents! Doesn’t he realize that a large number of the parents of whom he speaks have either alcohol/drug or abuse issues and have exhausted any desire to put the effort required to parent?
Does Mr. Romney have any clue that this daily job has fallen onto the grandparents, who too often live on fixed incomes and are physically unable to assume this role for countless years? Does Mr. Romney have some God-given right to determine decisions for a women with regard to early-term abortion? How dare Mitt Romney assume any understanding of the underlying issues that affect a women facing such devastating decisions.
Mary Ann Bruno
Catering to cyclists good for communities
I applaud the Oct. 9 editorial, “Bicycle tourism can be a boon to local economies,” and commend the communities mentioned for working together to make Montgomery County more welcoming to cyclists. As mentioned, bike tourists can spend a significant amount of money in the communities where they stop.
The basics — food, water, accessible restrooms, and lodging — are most important. But as we’ve learned through the Bicyclists Bring Business roundtables we’ve held across the state, and our frequent communications with cycling tourists, that even if communities have all these services, cyclists need to know how to find them.
Wayfinding signs, brochures, and mobile websites are all good starting steps. Once in the community, considerations such as bike racks and share-the-road signage can make visitors feel welcome and more likely to spread the word about the community to their friends and fellow cyclists.
While we love sharing the Canalway Trail with the 500 cyclists we guide from Buffalo to Albany every July as part of Cycling the Erie Canal (CTEC), our vision is 500, or even 5,000 cyclists, crossing the state weekly. And they’re coming; even this late in the season trail volunteers are reporting cyclists using the trail to traverse the state.
While these pairs and trios might not be as noticeable as CTEC tour riders, Montgomery County communities can still take advantage of the significant economic opportunity they present.
We invite community leaders to visit our website, www.ptny.org, to find out how they can better attract and serve bicycle tourists.
The writer is executive director of Parks & Trails New York.
Beware the post-election legislative pay raise
Hello, voters, you who struggle. In the Oct. 18 Gazette, Section B, Page 3: It looks like a last-minute pay raise for the Legislature.
Why, I thought they said inflation was under 1 per cent.
Voters, pay attention. The midnight robbery is on. Vote these people out in November.
The deadline for election letters is 5 p.m. on Oct. 31. We will continue to run selected letters on local races through Saturday, Nov. 3 in the print edition. More election-related letters will appear in the online edition.