Democrats talk the talk, except when it comes to one of their own
Too little too late. That’s what describes what just took place in Albany regarding the sexual harassment scandals involving Democratic Assemblyman Vito Lopez.
I am a longtime private businessman and community volunteer. For the past five years, I had the privilege to serve as an elected official and work in the belly of the beast — what could be called the Albany political cesspool. Don’t get me wrong: It’s not all bad, but it’s a far cry from being all good, especially when it comes to unethical personal behavior.
Never has this been more evident. Our politicians sat idly by while Speaker Shelly Silver condoned the actions of Lopez by pushing for a secret payoff to the victims, in an attempt to sweep it under the rug.
Where do our local, elected officials stand? Democrats (including Sen. Cecilia Tkaczyk, my opponent in the last election) claim to be champions of women, with slick commercials talking about defending the rights of women, yet they sit quietly regarding sexual harassment against young women in the very halls where they govern.
This isn’t about Republican vs. Democrat, though. This is about right vs. wrong. My comments would be forthcoming regardless of the political party of the perpetrator of such vile behavior.
If this were a private company, I would bet politicians could not run to the cameras fast enough to call for the CEO’s resignation and tout their support of women.
Where are the voices of the Capital Region leaders? Where is the outcry? Their silence is deafening.
The writer is a former state assemblyman.
Partisan politics making it impossible to govern
Re Vincent F. Carelli’s May 23 letter [“Stop playing politics, start solving problems”]: Boy, did he ever hit the nail on the head.
There was not one word of his letter that could be questioned by any politician in this country. Our poor president does not have a prayer with a lot of our elected officials out to get him.
If every registered voter were to send their elected congressman a copy of Mr. Carelli’s letter, it might shake things up a little in our beautiful country.
Good schools worth paying for in Niskayuna
The Niskayuna school budget was defeated in last week’s election [May 22 Gazette]. The school board will now work on another budget that we will be asked to vote on June 18.
Like many of my fellow citizens, I was initially against the proposed school tax hike. I was wrong. The increase is not to obtain more money for the district, but to try to make up for decreases in other funding while maintaining excellence in education.
There are no easy cuts left. Good schools are expensive. Good teachers are expensive. If I tried to spend all day in front of one of my daughters’ classrooms, I would be pulled out at the end, either in a straitjacket or handcuffs. The people who can do this difficult and critical work are worth our support.
We trust our schools with our children all day every day. Let’s also trust them to know what they need to do their jobs.
Remember the heroes who fought for our country
Memorial Day is one of respect, honor, gratitude and admiration. It has a special meaning for all of us. The old saying that freedom isn’t free rings loud and clear.
In February 2009, 1st Lt. Jared W. Southworth was killed in action in Afghanistan. He left behind a wife, four young children and a loving extended family. Like so many others who have fallen, Jared laid down his life so we can enjoy ours.
What many see as a motto, “God, family and country,” was a way of life to Jared and so many others — like PFC David Taylor Miller, Capt. John J. McKenna IV and Lance Cpt. Anthony J. Denier. The courage and dedication to put one’s self in harm’s way is something only a few are willing to do. Let us never forget selfless sacrifice. We owe them all a debt we can never repay.
Although it has broken our hearts to have lost a loved one, we can take comfort in the fact that Jared, like so many, wanted to be there defending our country. Like all who have fallen before them and will fall in the future, let us give thanks for those American heroes.
Not only on this day, but every day, let us honor and salute our fallen brothers and sisters who have truly given us the land of the free and home of the brave. As many hearts ache for their loss, including ours, let their memories never fade.
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