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What you need to know for 04/29/2017

Men are inherently less entitled to opine against abortion

Men are inherently less entitled to opine against abortion

*Men are inherently less entitled to opine against abortion *Ballston park critic distorted several

Men are inherently less entitled to opine against abortion

During the past month, three men wrote letters criticizing women for their reproductive health choices.

Dave Dankanich, in his Aug. 24 letter, suggested that women such as Sandra Fluke want “free contraceptives so they can have a good time anytime.” Donald A. Vanderwarker, in his Aug. 26 letter, called women who have had abortions “unfeeling females.” Finally, Jim Whiting in his Aug. 30 letter, accused women of having “abortions of convenience.”

These men have the right to oppose abortion and contraception. However it is inappropriate for them to disparage the motives of women who have had abortions and who advocate health plans that provide contraceptive coverage.

Though none of these men appear to have experience as physicians, psychologists or social workers, they have the hubris to claim that they understand the motives of women regarding their reproductive health choices. In my opinion such men are uniquely arrogant and woefully uninformed. These men should heed the adage, “don’t judge someone until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes.”

This adage is a reminder that we can never truly know what it’s like to be that other person, and perhaps their actions are motivated by issues we do not comprehend.

Don Steiner

Schenectady

Ballston park critic distorted several facts

Re Polly Windels’ Sept. 11 letter falsely describing efforts by the Ballston Town Board and Park and Recreation Committee (P&RC) to fulfill Frank Schindick’s bequest to provide a park to the town:

Ms. Windels claimed due diligence was not done, that only three sites were selected, that secret meetings were held, and that the P&RC bullied the Town Board into the selection. Apparently Ms. Windels feels that only she can determine the intent of a will.

Here are the facts: The Town Board established the P&RC by interviewing and selecting seven members and two alternates. The P&RC held over 24 meetings over a two-year period, all open to the public. And all meetings were formally documented. The meeting minutes and presentations are all available to anyone.

The P&RC studied types of parks, neighboring town parks, town surveys and the will of the estate. It met with the town attorney. It then developed a concept for a park that both fit the will and met the town’s interests.

The land selection process included contacting every landowner, in writing, with at least 15 acres of land. The P&RC developed a weighting system for the attributes, and visited every parcel offered. Nineteen different parcels were offered and fully evaluated. The P&RC selected the top three for further review. The complete process, selections and decisions were all presented to the Town Board at open meetings on several occasions.

Members of the Town Board, including the town supervisor, visited the top three selections prior to making any decisions. The P&RC developed a detailed business plan for the proposed park.

The town’s attorney participated in the effort, which was handled by a surrogate court. The attorney also enlisted the assistance of the state attorney general. I believe these three individuals are far better suited to decide the position of the will than Ms. Windels.

Ms. Windels attended many of the P&RC meetings and voiced her unwavering objection to a town park. It is clear that she is offended that others want a town park.

Daniel Russell

Ballston

The writer is chairman of the town’s Park and Recreation Committee.

Something rotten with Sch’dy assessor plan

Let’s call a spade a spade [about Schenectady’s plans to hire] an assessor who is not qualified but will get his experience “later,” and is given a raise just because he is a good guy.

Who’s in bed with whom here? And what is being paid off, or traded, for what?

If it looks fishy, acts fishy and smells fishy, it’s fishy.

R. Lee Bowen

Saratoga Springs

Time for town to pull plug on Camp Bisco

Duanesburg’s controversial Camp Bisco has been well documented. Letters to the editor, articles in the Gazette and discussions at the Duanesburg Town Board and Planning Board have been numerous.

As a town resident, I believe this event should not occur next year, or in future years, in Duanesburg. The reasons have been cited before: noise, traffic jams, misuse of residential property by event attendees and, of course, the drug issue. The economic benefits have been few, because most of the money has been paid to attend the event and to spend within Camp Bisco for food and drugs.

I predict that if the event were held near any other location in the town, 98 percent would have the same sentiments that have been stated in this letter.

Say no to Camp Bisco.

John Peters

Quaker Street

The writer is a candidate for Town Board.

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