Do what you can for our heroes in military
I never get tired of writing about veterans. They make up a big part of our world. If it were not for veterans, we would not have the freedoms and the lifestyle we have in our country today. “Freedom isn’t free” — I hope we all know that.
What many people don’t know is that many veterans came back with wounds you can see and wounds you can’t see. It’s the wound you can’t see that takes a lot of time and effort.
First of all, find out who these veterans are. The Veterans Administration (VA) hospitals are doing the best that they can to treat psychological wounds that take a long time to take care of. Most of the VA hospitals and clinics are doing a great job with all the problems the veterans are faced with today. The other VA hospitals that, for whatever the reason, fell behind in veteran care are now up to speed and our VA service is now the best ever. Veterans are lucky to be able to go to our VA facilities and be treated for whatever.
Along with VA care, there are some nonprofit organizations that help veterans, one of them being Saratoga WarHouse. This organization helps veterans with psychological wounds. It all has to do with retired thoroughbred racehorses and veterans that need help. It’s a great fix for all concerned. You can get more information by contacting [email protected] or [email protected]
If you are a veteran who needs information on getting some kind of help, contact your veterans post. Some of them are disabled American veterans [Disabled American Veterans Chapter NY 158, covering Saratoga, Warren and Washington counties] or any American Legion or VFW Post. They should be listed in the phone book.
Thank you to our brave veterans and than you to our active military.
God bless the United States of America.
The writer is a WWII veteran
Plenty for moralists to be outraged over
In his Nov. 20 letter, “Boycott items made in Israeli settlements,” Rev. Alan D. Kinney is very clear about his condemnation of Israeli West Bank policies and encourages the reader to make “a moral statement” by boycotting settlement products “this holiday season.”
What he fails to note is that the committee he chairs, Boycott Committee United Methodist Kairos Response, is an anti-Israel movement that veils its antagonism towards Israel under the guise of “Christian Theology.”
The issue is not that the Kairos Response movement criticizes Israel; the issue is that it criticizes only Israel.
Kairos Response is a Christian movement that has taken its lead from a 2009 document called “Kairos Palestine,” attributed to Palestinian Christians. This one-sided document is filled with anti-Israel and anti-Judaism rhetoric and accuses Israel of Christian persecution along with other human rights violations.
In this context, it is interesting to consider that World Watch List, an organization that monitors worldwide Christian persecution, publishes a yearly list of the 50 worst violators of Christian human rights. The 2014 list includes Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, India and China, but not Israel. The list also includes Gaza and the West Bank where the report notes that anti-Christian violence by Muslim extremist groups has been increasing.
According to World Watch List, we sell goods produced by some of the “worst” human rights offenders in the world, yet Rev. Kinney and his movement single out Israeli settlement produced goods for boycott. Why the United Methodist Church has focused on Israel can only be understood in the context of the anti-Israel perspective of its membership in general and the Kairos Response movement in particular.
For example, on Aug. 22 of this year, Hamas, without an open trial, executed 18 Palestinian men it had suspected of collaborating with Israel. Apparently, the United Methodist Church saw no human rights problem with these summary executions, only with the Israeli settlements.
If you want to make a moral statement this holiday season, reject the hate mongering of Kairos Response.
Thanksgiving efforts show our local spirit
In regards to the Nov. 23 article, “Dinner is Served,” and the Nov. 24 article, “Feeding the needy & volunteers’ souls,” these pieces truly show what a great and giving community we have here in Schenectady.
Both Catholic Charities and the Salvation Army have experienced this, firsthand, through collaborations like our Thanksgiving meals. For over 40 years, we’ve been working together to bring a warm meal to the home bound at Thanksgiving. This year, our community partnership expanded, as Ellis Medicine donated the containers for the meals and HP Hood/CrowleyFoods donated milk.
The Salvation Army cooks and packages the Thanksgiving meal, and Catholic Charities Senior and Caregiver Support Services supports the volunteers who deliver them. Both organizations recruit hundreds of volunteers to make this happen.
The volunteers are the heart and soul of this operation, and the work they do to prepare, cook, package and deliver over 400 meals to families in Schenectady County is an outstanding testament to their community spirit and dedication.
Vincent W. Colonno
The writer is CEO of Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Albany.
Avoid getting shot by cops: Don’t break law
“He could be my brother.”
If that statement is correct, might I make a suggestion. Tell your brother not to commit a felony (robbery with the use of force is.) Second, tell him that reaching into a police officer’s automobile and trying to grab his gun is not the smartest thing to do. Michael Brown would be alive today if he had not committed a strong-armed robbery and fought with a police officer.
The simple truth is respect is a two-way street. If you think that it is permissible to do either of the above, then whatever happens to you is your own fault. We need not dismiss the actions of criminals when the end result is less than satisfactory.
If you look at the actions of Michael Brown's stepfather on the night of the grand jury decision, you can see that Michael’s path was always headed to the result that occurred.
I truly wonder what would have happened to a person if any of those attending the un-SAFE Act rallies had stood up and demanded that the state capital should be burned to the ground? Why has he not been arrested for inciting a riot?
The real solution is not to act like a criminal. Act like a citizen. I am sure that most can name Michael Brown, but how many can name the last shooting victim in their own town? I suspect not nearly as many.