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Letters to the Editor for Saturday, Aug. 17

Letters to the Editor for Saturday, Aug. 17

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Letters to the Editor for Saturday, Aug. 17
Photographer: Shutterstock

Where are the free television channels?

I’m writing this on behalf of all the people in the Capital District who have previously received free over-the-air TV channels. What’s going on? We were originally told to rescan our TVs on Aug. 3 because several of our local stations were changing frequencies. Well that date has come and gone, I have rescanned my TV several times, and still no signals.
Furthermore, the stations that were left are now disappearing one by one and now I’m left with only one station that keeps breaking up. And this, after having as many as 25 clear channels in the past. I repeat, what’s going on? Is this a conspiracy by the cable networks to drum up business? Also, how come there has been no media coverage of this?
Robert Dufek
Clifton Park

GOP, NRA collude against gun control

The time for an amendment to the Second Amendment has been long past due. I have rifles and handguns with a concealed weapon permit. This being said, I haven’t hunted in over 40 years and I don’t intend to start again. 
I spend time at a pistol range shooting at targets and enjoy time with friends who also shoot.
Assault weapons are for our military and police and have only one reason for their existence — killing. Those who have served were issued these weapons to fight an enemy if we were at war.
The NRA has a hold on the Republican Party as it donates to their election campaigns. It’s an organization whose time has come and passed.
I learned to handle a rifle as a young man and was taught by an NRA instructor at the armory in Schenectady.
Today’s NRA is nothing more than a piggy bank for those who take its money. The Second Amendment doesn’t give everyone the right to purchase or own an assault weapon. It clearly states that a “militia” has the right to carry weapons.
Our president talks out of both sides of his mouth and has done nothing to protect the citizens he is supposed to serve. Our Senate is controlled by our president’s party and they have fallen in step with him.
Those who vote Republican are in league, and the many deaths caused by assault weapons doesn’t seem to faze them. I say enough is enough and God helps us.
Gary Philip Guido

Few reasons to buy Trump’s sincerity 

Watching President Trump “condemn” white supremacy and hatred following a weekend of shootings was among the saddest events I have witnessed in a long time. President Trump struggled to read, hesitantly, without passion, as if unconnected to the message that someone else had obviously written for him.
Sadder were the words he agreed to read, words that deflected the causes behind recent shootings to everything but the dehumanizing, divisive, hatred-provoking character of his own spoken and body language and that which he calls out from others. As sad is the solid support he gets from the Republicans in the House and Senate.
I will find some small reason to believe Mr. Trump’s sincerity in condemning white supremacy and hatred when he condemns both during his rallies with the equivalent emotional fervor, spontaneity and passionate energy with which he pompously incites his base, speaks through the one-way protection of Twitter, and, on Fox News, thrashes against all who disagree.
Bob Long

Don’t put shootings off on the mentally ill

At the age of 23, I was a trained federal agent. I carried a .357 Magnum and other accoutrements. I was also an undiagnosed manic depressive. I suffered wild manic episodes and then grievous depression. Yet somehow, I managed to kill no one. Not even myself.
The notion that mental illness is at the root of killing sprees is flat-out wrong. What is at the root of these sprees is triple-pronged: 1. Testosterone 2. Anger 3. Delusion.
People like to say shooters, by the very act of a mass killing, are crazy. But it’s not the kind of crazy you find on the DSM. So it calls into question what exactly is a mental illness? Manic depression is a disorder of mood, which is physical. Personality disorders abound, but is this actually an illness? What do we mean when we say mental? Are we referring to the brain, which is a physical organ? Wouldn’t it be more logical to call mental illness brain disorders?
It’s high time we had a discussion about mental illness, but we cannot lay responsibility for slaughters on those who just happen to have a diagnosis.
Erin Giangiacomo
Ballston Lake

Obama a far better American than Trump

No one should be surprised at Donald Trump’s racism. It has been a lifelong sentiment, as it was with his father, who was arrested several years ago for refusing to rent to blacks. His political aspirations began with him accusing Barak Obama of being foreign-born. Even after Obama provided proof of his citizenship, it wasn’t enough for a dunderhead like Trump.
In my opinion, Barak Obama was and is a far better example of a desirable and honorable American in every way than Trump has ever been or will be. He’s not a liar, a braggart or an adulterer, and he doesn’t pal around with sexist predators.
The president remarked recently, “I don’t have a racist bone in my body.”  More accurately, he should have said, “I don’t have an honest bone in my body.”
Jane Reisenger

Make sure homes are visitable for disabled 

The Americans with Disabilities Act promised individuals with disabilities equal access in their communities. 
Yet many Americans still do not have full access to restaurants, community parks and other public venues due to inaccessible bathrooms, narrow doorways and streets without curb cuts. 
If you are the friend or family member of a person with a disability, or a physical or sensory impairment, you too are limited if you cannot access a public place together.
Community members can support equal access by speaking to local business owners and representatives about the importance of accessibility.  An easy, proactive approach is to become an “Identifier for Access” by using the three basic requirements that are used under the growing visitability trend.  
Visitability is a term used when referencing a home that is built or revised to meet three basic requirements for universal access.  They are: one zero-step entryway, 32-inch doorways and one bathroom on the main floor with enough space to maneuver a wheelchair.
Although the term is intended for thoughtful, sustainable housing, it can also be a simple method to remember when visiting public establishments, as these three elements align with the ADA public accommodation requirements.
For information on accessibility, please contact LIFE at RCIL in Amsterdam at 518-842-3561 or visit www.rcil.com.  
Andria Berger
The writer is a statewide systems advocate for LIFE at RCIL.

Need better paving, lighting for concerts 

On August 4, Music Haven (in Central Park), celebrated its 30th anniversary. The music was outstanding as always, and the large crowd had a fabulous time.
When the festivities ended, most of us had to walk back to our cars parked in the various lots scattered around the park. The walkways were poorly lit or not lighted at all. 
The parking lots near the dog park or greenhouses are unpaved, with uneven surfaces and no lighting. Many of the attendees are seniors and people with mobility issues. This is a potentially dangerous issue and something the city of Schenectady should address. 
The Music Haven is a wonderful treasure and offers top-quality entertainment that brings our community together. It would be a shame that more people do not avail themselves of this opportunity due to these concerns.
Can the city provide better lighting and signs for these parking lots, at least during the Music Haven events? 
Jean Taylor

Left is not objective when judging Trump

Who actually has the more severe rhetoric? Objectively, it’s not Trump. Here are some words used to describe Trump gleaned from the Aug. 5 Letters to the Editor: Ruthless, shameless, trampled on Democratic norms, violated the Constitution, above the law, corrupt, extremely flawed, amoral, unfit, con man, narcissistic demagogue, completely unqualified, no regard for values or welfare of America, false promises, lies, bluster, soulless, racist, supporter of the KKK, Arian Brotherhood and white supremacists, hateful. Wow.
Not one single example of what Trump has actually done to deserve any of these descriptors. Just the insane leftist frothing-at-the-mouth whining spewed from the liberal media.
And the sheep believe them without any actual analysis of the facts. Trump may speak bluntly, but just read the terms used to describe him. 
I wonder how these people loved Obama. He was just so amazing.  He nearly broke our country at home and abroad. But wow, he could read a teleprompter.
I can’t wait to hear the heads explode when Trump gets re-elected, which he absolutely will because we are not all vitriol-ranting liberals, and most of us can see the amazing progress Trump has made for our country.
Bill Denison
Burnt Hills

Congress needs to have term limits

How are the U.S. president, a fetus and fall semester different from Congress? Answer, the first three have term limits and Congress does not. What has the lack of term limits brought us?
Lots of things for Congress, not so much for us. To wit, a pension plan that any teacher, firefighter or police officer would love. A medical plan that would be the envy of the world. I wonder if the VA would have the problems it has if the Congress had to get its medical care there. An exemption from many laws that bind the rest of us.
The four leaders of the two houses have a total of 103 years in Congress. Way too much.
Incumbency is a formidable advantage to overcome. In 2018, 84 percent of Senate incumbents and 91 percent of House incumbents were re-elected. Term limits would obviate this situation.
If we are ever going to get rid of the dysfunctional cabal in Washington, drain the swamp and accomplish things for our country, term limits for Congress is a great start.
Jefferson said “... the total abandonment of the principle of rotation in the offices of President and Senator will end in abuse.” How true.
William F. Malec

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