Princetown’s former justice served town well, got bum rap
During the past year, there have been too many negative articles posted [about former Princetown Justice Michelle Van Woeart]. I humbly request that one be printed that states the truth.
I am not an elected official nor would I ever consider it in such a malfeasant local government.
I am, however, a lifelong Princetown resident with roots in this town that date to the very beginning of its establishment. I can only hope that my ancestors will rest in peace after all the ill repute and deceit that has corrupted our small town.
Anyone who has been a longtime resident is well aware that it requires hard work, qualifications and commitment to any of the town’s part-time positions. The successes of the town are because professional people have been dedicated to their jobs and have been more valuable than any salary or hourly wage that has been assigned.
Since I had the good fortune of being appointed court clerk by Justice VanWoeart (in 2001), I would like to express my gratitude and respect to her for all her years of personal and professional commitment and dedication to the town. I have sat at the bench with her for the last 12 years and witnessed her commitment to excellence in the justice system. She has inspired others to push past mediocrity; I certainly have been changed because of her innovations. Few people have her vision, ability and concern to listen with an open mind and administer fair and impartial judgment. This town has lost a great public servant.
Judge VanWoeart has had to face many obstacles as town justice, but steadfastly negotiated with objectivity and dedication, which sets her apart from other leaders.
I thank her for always taking the initiative. Success can never be achieved unless someone like her has the vision and desire to initiate it. Michelle has a winner’s attitude and will always be a winner in the eyes of all who know her.
The court has brought in a considerable amount of revenue for both the town and the state over the last several years. We have ranked second in the county (2008, 2009, 2010) despite being the smallest town in the county. For additional information on statistics, please visit: http://www.osc.state.ny.us/localgov/datanstat/jc/index_choice.htm.
Rebecca (Mastroianni) Selee
The writer is the town court’s clerk.
Shooting deer in ‘baited’ areas isn’t hunting
Re Nic Aragosa’s Dec. 31 letter about Emerson Van Patten’s comments on deer hunting in Texas, where the deer are attracted by “baited” areas and the so-called hunters pick them off from a nearby blind: This is not hunting.
Hunting involves stalking, covertly hiding such as in a tree stand, and pursuit of the prey. Not sitting in a blind with a cup of coffee.
Mr. Van Patten was not misinformed about anything, he was making a statement.
Re Mr. Aragosa’s comments that he has been an avid hunter since his teens: So? I used to hunt years ago, I never did shoot a deer and do not honestly think I could pull the trigger today unless I needed the meat for myself or someone else.
Again, to simply sit and wait for the deer to “come in” and be lured by feed or salt, and take the shot, is not hunting. If you cannot get a deer in two to three shots, you shouldn’t even be out in the woods.
Noonan’s assessment of SAFE Act was ugly
Previously I disagreed with [columnist] Ed Noonan calling his experience killing deer in Texas deer “hunting” [Nov. 5 letter]. I said it was deer “shooting.” Now I must disagree with his depiction of the signing of the New York SAFE Act as the ugliest thing that could happen to firearms owners [Dec. 26 Gazette].
Mr. Noonan exhibits an appalling narrowness of vision, especially for a representative of a widely read newspaper. To further state that this “legislation totally ignore(s) Second Amendment rights” is untrue and a reflection of NRA [National Rifle Association]-generated hysteria.
I am a firearms owner and hunter, and find no fault with any of the act’s regulations that he reviewed. They include:
1) Registration of assault weapons.
2) Requiring background checks for private sales.
3) Renewing/recertifying pistol permits every five years.
4) Requiring ammunition sellers to register with the state and perform background checks.
5) Requiring ammunition sellers to keep a record of a buyer’s name, address and occupation and the amount of bullets purchased.
6) Regulate magazine capacity.
7) Restrict the acquisition of firearms by the mentally ill (those determined to be a danger to themselves and others).
These regulations pose no more threat to our Second Amendment rights than do requiring a license to drive and auto insurance to our other constitutional rights.
In a free society awash in firearms, there is no simple single solution to gun violence. We can stick our heads in the sand and do as little as the NRA proposals advocate or we can take the modest steps that the New York SAFE Act proposes.
I, too, know who my representatives are and how they voted. I, too, will remember them come election time. I hope others do, too.
Cruz fought the good fight vs. Obamacare
I have tremendous admiration for the Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.
He promised his constituency to repeal Obamacare, and he fought very hard — a 24-hour filibuster — knowing the backlash that was coming from the fanatical liberal Democrats and the Obama people.
Obamacare is a train wreck that will crash and burn, taking many Americans who voted for it with it. I have serious concerns about the character of President Obama and his political views.
Keep troopers safer with blinking arrows
In the interest of safety for our state police, why not have a large blinking arrow on state police vehicles?
It could be situated on the roof of the vehicle. It would work in the same manner as the stop signs do on school buses.
It would be as effective as it is on the snow plows that are using it when they do their plowing.
Walter “Neal” Brazell
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