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Letters to the Editor
What you need to know for 01/20/2017

No follow-up for racial taunting incident at BH-BL

No follow-up for racial taunting incident at BH-BL

*No follow-up for racial taunting incident at BH-BL *Red Sox exemplified team play in laudatory mann

No follow-up for racial taunting incident at BH-BL

Six to 12 Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake students chanted “Amsterico” to offend the largely Hispanic Amsterdam football team and community during BH-BL’s homecoming football game [Oct. 16 Gazette]. The derogatory term was meant to insult Amsterdam, but it only hurt BH-BL’s reputation.

Now that the initial storm has blown over, things seem too quiet at school. From my perspective as a BH-BL freshman who wasn’t at the game, it appears district administrators have shown an insufficient response.

Two days after the game, during the last hour of school, an announcement was made, a description of [what happened] and an apology. Then some upperclassmen entered my classroom and told us to sign a sheet of paper which would be mailed to Amsterdam. Over 900 signatures were [collected]. After that, rumors only echoed down hallways about what happened to the students who [made] the slur. And after that, it was barely spoken of.

That’s not right. According to the Burnt Hills website, Superintendent Patrick McGrath wants to take advantage of the situation by “turning it into a teachable moment.” Which is all fine and dandy, except it isn’t happening.

The BH-BL student populace was left practically clueless after that announcement. There was no assembly, no telling of [what transpired] behind closed doors at the district office. And this bothers me.

As a student, it is my role to actively pursue knowledge and to use it to better my life. That’s why we go to school, after all. But in this case, I’m not allowed access to the knowledge I need. We haven’t learned anything since the homecoming game.

Jacob Ettkin

Glenville

Red Sox exemplified team play in laudatory manner

It is a truly wonderful thing. Oh, not that the American League East won the World Series (though I do like that), but that the Boston Red Sox won it.

They certainly deserved it. They played well enough despite not hitting very well overall. They scrambled, though, hitting when it counted, and seemingly, from my perspective, out-pitching the St. Louis Cardinals. My congrats to them and to their stalwart, long-suffering fans, albeit that’s now three titles in 10 years.

I’ve said it often enough, although a fan of the Sox’s arch and historic rivals, born and bred a Yankee, I’m more a fan of the game and its complicated drama. During the season, the playoffs and Series, as my team faltered and failed, I had that much going for me, which was nice.

But there’s one more thing that sincerely warms my heart about it all, one preeminent thing — the indubitable fact that the Sox are truly a “team.” No matter your routine affiliation, you gotta love that. Got to because it’s a grand and a great thing to see such a unit of selfless, hardscrabble ballplayers sweat through the strife of battle to earn their just reward. And to see it happen in a storied venue in my lifetime, if but from afar and electronically, was special.

I guess that, given my love of the game over all else, the Boston Red Sox are, today, also my champions!

Tom Hefferon

Rotterdam

Proposition 5 land swap merits a no vote

Proposition 5 to amend the state constitution is a bad deal. It is poorly written and sets a precedent allowing a corporation to buy a valuable protected resource from the state.

NYCO Minerals of Willsboro wants to acquire 200 acres of forest preserve land estimated to contain 1.2 to 1.5 million metric tons of wollastonite. NYCO Minerals Inc. is owned by the Greek-based multinational, S&B Industrial Minerals S.A., which operates in 75 countries on five continents and posted a profit of about $54 million from $470 million in sales during 2012. Based on current wollastonite prices, this mineral deposit would generate hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue for [the company].

As Proposition 5 is written, New York state would receive some unspecified land with a value of at least $1 million. This is the equivalent of New York state selling mineral resources for pennies on the dollar, practically giving away a piece of its natural heritage for the profit of a foreign corporation.

New Yorkers deserve a better deal. Vote no on Proposition 5.

Henry Kinosian

Ballston Lake

Keep gambling, like prostitution, illegal

Gambling has been around as long as the so-called oldest profession, prostitution.

There is a reason both were outlawed. It is because the detrimental effects outweigh the benefits. If we deny this and legalize gambling, we might as well legalize prostitution since the benefits purported for gambling could also be applied to prostitution — increased jobs, revenue from taxes, all in all a boost to the economy.

Of course, that would make us all pimps.

Sandra Natale

Wilton

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