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What you need to know for 02/20/2017

DOT needs to put ‘drivers first’ not just on the Northway

DOT needs to put ‘drivers first’ not just on the Northway

*DOT needs to put ‘drivers first’ not just on the Northway *Scheer’s crazy if he thinks Calif. did r

DOT needs to put ‘drivers first’ not just on the Northway

I applaud Gov. Cuomo for implementing his “Drivers First” initiative and subsequent directive to modify the Thaddeus Kosciusko Bridge re-decking project to lessen drivers’ inconvenience.

The directive purportedly came after the governor himself sat in traffic on the Northway on the way back from the Adirondacks due to this same re-decking project.

We need to expand this program and for our state Department of Transportation leaders to get out of their offices and experience our driving pain firsthand. If they did, they would experience our driving heartaches, such as transiting the outdated and dangerous Route 7 corridor with ill-timed traffic lights, requiring us to stop and go at every intersection, left turns that are allowed during rush hour, and giving priority to side street traffic lights when only one or two cars are merging onto Route 7.

Only when our DOT leaders are required to drive these routes, as we do, will we see systemic changes.

Let’s take this “Drivers First” program a step further. An effective “Drivers First” program should allow the driving public to provide input and rate the efforts of the DOT — quality of routes and projects, congestion density, detour efficiency, signage adequacy, pothole density, severity, etc.

Steven M. Jeffes

Brunswick

Scheer’s crazy if he thinks Calif. did right

Regarding Robert Scheer’s Nov. 20 column, “Land of milk and honey once again”: Really? He must be hung over from celebrating Obama’s reward for giving away so many gifts.

California is in a huge hole and only going deeper. Five years ago California was the fifth largest economy in the world. Under Gov. Jerry “Moonbeam” Brown, it is now the eighth largest economy. It is not going in the right direction, it is going down the tubes.

Celebrities like Harrison Ford now live out of state and “fly in” to work for the day. He does this to avoid the ridiculous tax rate — the rates before the geniuses [voters] approved a tax increase. State unions are driving the state into bankruptcy.

Because a bunch of morons vote themselves a tax increase does not mean the state is going in the right direction.

Just like there is not enough wealth to tax our way out of this huge hole Obama has put us in nationally, there is not enough wealth in California to dig themselves out of the hole they are putting themselves in. Already multiple towns and municipalities have filed for bankruptcy.

It is only a matter of time before the state has to file for bankruptcy and all of the United States will have to pay for the tax-and-spend policies of California.

Dave Edwards

Halfmoon

No harm in student’s photo, so why the foul?

In a Schalmont High School English class, students recently received an extra-credit assignment to advertise the school play, “The Foreigner,” which was performed last week.

One student’s advertisement was labeled as “inappropriate” and “racist” when he took a photo of a fellow student of Asian descent pointing to the name of the play written on the board. However, the student in the photo did not believe he was being “racist” to her.

Disciplinary action was taken and the student was suspended for a full week of classes. The student was suspended, as per the state’s Dignity for All Students Act, which took effect in July.

The Dignity Act is enforced to prevent actions deemed racist or influenced by different ethnic or national origins. However, the suspension of this student goes too far. If the student was suspended per the Dignity Act, then that must imply that someone was offended. However, the student in the photo said she was not at all offended — nor was any other student in the class.

This is clearly an overreaction in its worst form. Why must the school assume just because the student in the photo is of a different ethnic background that [the photographer] was being racist? Why should this student’s education be compromised by missing a whole week’s worth of learning?

Ryan Little

Rotterdam

The writer is a Schalmont student.

AP’s Mideast story slanted against Israel

Richard Cohen’s Nov. 21 column says that “Hamas and other militant groups this year sent more than 700 rockets crashing haphazardly into southern Israel...”

In the same paper, the Page One lead article by The Associated Press, in fact for the second day in a row, referred to “the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip.”

How many rockets should Israel allow to drop on their land before it can take defensive retaliation?

I think Cohen’s article might have gone on the front page, and The Associated Press article should have been on the Opinion page.

Glen Walkup

Niskayuna

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