In Schenectady, a civic-minded motorist helped police catch a potentially dangerous drunk driver last Monday afternoon. Police said the motorist noticed a van driving erratically, contacted police, and followed the driver across the river into Scotia. When police responded, they found the driver of the van in front of a day care center, passed out and with open containers of alcohol in his vehicle. The man was arrested and charged with felony DWI. Had this motorist not made the effort to follow this driver and help policy identify and locate him, who knows what horrible consequences it could have had?
In Latham, the community has raised more than $100,000 to benefit 15-year-old Noah Roman, whose mother and 10-year-old brother were killed as part of a murder-suicide by Noah's father, a Colonie police officer. One event at the Spare Time bowling alley in Latham earlier this month raised over $55,000 from bowlers and donations from individuals and businesses. GoFundMe pages set up by Colonie police and a family cousin, as well as other websites to help Noah with living expenses and college tuition, had collected at least $50,000 more. And the amount is still growing.
In Johnstown and Amsterdam, the Reality Check anti-smoking organization hosted free showings for kids of Kung Fu Panda 3 at the Emerald Cinemas and Johnstown MoviePlex last week as part of an effort to discourage Hollywood from glamorizing smoking. The "International Week of Action," held during schools' winter break, includes a call for movies that depict tobacco use to be rated R. Such a rating would hurt attendance at movies targeted at kids, which would cut into movie-makers' profits and perhaps convince them to change their practices. A recent report by the U.S. Surgeon General concluded that smoking depicted in movies is a contributor to youth smoking, and that removing tobacco use from films targeted at youths would ultimately prevent 1 million deaths.
High Notes is a feature of The Gazette Opinion section that appears every Monday to spotlight the many good works being done by individuals and organizations in our communities. If you have a suggestion for High Notes, please send it to Editorial Page Editor Mark Mahoney at [email protected]