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Letters to the Editor
What you need to know for 01/17/2017

It’s time for GOP to give up its assault on Obamacare

It’s time for GOP to give up its assault on Obamacare

*It’s time for GOP to give up its assault on Obamacare *U.S. should get nose, money out of Mideast *

It’s time for GOP to give up its assault on Obamacare

Insanity has been defined as doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. Our Republican-led House has voted to repeal Obamacare 42 times (that number may yet rise!) and has gotten the same result every time.

Do they need to be reminded that we have a Democrat in the Oval Office, as well as a majority of Democrats in the Senate? I understand they don’t like it. My advice: Get over it! And get to work doing something that might actually be meaningful!

Now they are threatening to hold government hostage unless Obamacare is defunded. While that has yet to play out, there is a good chance that once again it will end with the same result. Personally, I’d rather have them just vote on it again!

Instead of simply spinning their wheels, wasting their time and our money on meaningless votes, perhaps they should try a newer and possibly novel strategy. If they truly want to eliminate Obamacare, as well as pass some sort of meaningful legislation, how about in 2014 they come up with intelligent, viable and electable candidates for the 33 Senate seats up for grabs?

They also might want to look further toward the next presidential election and come up with someone that mainstream America might like, too.

While the current Republican dog-and-pony show has certainly been entertaining, it has not resulted in anything viable for the American people, with the possible exception of showing us just how insane politics can be!

Ralph Denison

Amsterdam

U.S. should get nose, money out of Mideast

Congress must put the taxpayers’ money where their mouth is regarding the frequent skirmishes in the Middle East.

Congress no longer has the luxury to ignore taxpayers. We should not let these old men send our young men to die in the Middle East because of the ongoing, never-ending battle.

Obama should concentrate on the frightening direction America is heading toward.

Eleanor Baker

Schenectady

Essex lakes should be classified as wilderness

I am writing in support of Evelyn Schaefer Greene’s Sept. 9 letter in which she advocates for a “wilderness” classification for the Essex Chain of Lakes area. [Conservationist] Paul Schaefer, her father, certainly would have agreed.

The Adirondack Park Agency (APA) has put off its decision on classification until October or, probably, November. There is still time for the public to weigh in with the governor and APA commissioners, and it is important to do so. After all, this land belongs to everyone in the state.

A “wilderness” classification, resulting in a quiet, natural environment with reasonable public access, is widely supported. More than four times as many people, including all of the conservation organizations that commented on the several classification options before the July 19 APA deadline, wanted “wilderness.”

Less than half of Forest Preserve land in the Adirondack Park is “wilderness” now — and there will be few opportunities in the future to create more — whereas more than half, and most of the private land, including 1 million acres under conservation easements, allows for motorized recreation.

There is no doubt that the ecologically sensitive Essex Chain of Lakes meets the qualifications for “wilderness.” These small, jewel-like lakes are still pristine and, with time, the scars on the land from logging activity and the motorized vehicles of hunting clubs will heal.

The APA’s decision provides a rare opportunity to do something significant for the Adirondack Park, consistent with the Adirondack Park Agency Act, which requires that APA give first priority to protection of natural resources.

Charles C. Morrison

Saratoga Springs

The writer is a member of the Protect the Adirondacks! board and formerly served in the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

New bridge’s lighting is problematic as well

Two other issues about the new [Western Gateway] bridge I observed late the other evening:

A few pedestrians walking on the new completed side could hardly be seen because of the long shadowy areas. I consider this unsafe in many ways, aside from seeing one possibly falling into the roadway with no protective railing there, but also a setting for possible crime.

Lighting is from the usual institutional lights one sees on a highway. Wouldn’t it have been nice if they had continued with many light poles in the same style as one sees in Scotia and downtown Schenectady before heading west on the bridge? Is there any way we could still have more lighting put in?

Also, re the Sept. 20 Gazette editorial on graffiti around town, I already see some on the new bridge. Maybe it was easily done while in the dark shadowy areas I mentioned. One thing the graffiti demonstrates, though, is [consistent] with public opinion about the new bridge rails on the west side — “ugh.”

Linda Gaida

Glenville

Don’t marginalize those living on the edge

This response is to Walter “Neal” Brazell’s Sept. 23 letter regarding Congress and food stamp recipients.

It is very easy to sit in judgment of those people on food stamps. Mr. Brazell assumes that all people on food stamps do not work. I wonder if he has ever tried to feed a family while working for minimum wage, or if he’s ever been out of work or hungry.

In this great country of ours, no person should be allowed to go hungry. It’s interesting, also, that we have money for war, and “corporate welfare” in the form of subsidies to agriculture conglomerates, but can not provide food for our poor.

Perhaps it’s time to reassess our priorities.

Walter Morlock

Schenectady

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