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Letters to the Editor for Saturday, April 4

Letters to the Editor for Saturday, April 4

Your Voice

Choose cooperation over confrontation

During the March 25 daily briefing led by President Trump, I was left with only one positive feeling. That came from Dr. Deborah Birx in her responses to reporters’ persistent questioning.
She stressed the importance of the data collection into the how COVID-19 virus spreads, where it originates, its severity in different individuals, and how other countries succeeded in its containment.
Dr. Brix explained how other countries are providing scientific data on their research in combating this new contagion. This scientific collection and sharing of data is important to all nations.
International research is the reason the internet was originally created. Google searches used to give you the best information available on a subject of interest, not on where to purchase items that you previously queried.
Now I read that Rep. Elise Stefanik and her Republican supporters are calling for a U.S.-led international investigation into China’s response to the virus.
Why isn’t she advocating cooperation with the very capable scientific research community available from China? It appears that the Republican solution to all problems is to demand, threaten lawsuits and deflect blame.
This political diversion will unfortunately be echoed over social media as being as a good thing.
Bill Smith

Represent people, not your agendas

Having listened to members from both parties accuse each other of the same wrongdoings, I realized that most of the people who are in the political arena are not representing their constituents at all. They are representing their own agendas.
In this time of upheaval and uncertainty, what all American people need right now are representatives who truly have their best interests at heart.
Inclusive of all political affiliations, we really just want the truth.
We are strong people, we can handle strife, we are extremely resilient.
For God’s sake, we are descendants of some of the most rebellious people in history. Stop treating us like children who need to be shielded from the truth.
Do you want to help the average Joe/Joan, who, overnight and without warning became unemployed, their children’s teachers, and may be infected with a crafty virus? Or do you want to protect billionaires? You cannot have it both ways. There are far more Joe/Joan’s than there are billionaires, so who are our representatives really representing?
Linda Mackanesi

Trump the one who cares about country

Ms. Sargent’s March 27 letter (“We must put lives above the economy”) compelled me to respond.
Mr. Trump has done more in his short time for this county than the poor excuse for a POTUS we put up with for eight years.
All Obama did was divide the country and knock us down in world standings. Now we have a man who cares more about the country than liberal nonsense. The way Obama conducted our country business, he’d still be out on the golf course with a “What Me Worry” look on his face.
After reading her donkey quote, being a gentleman precludes me from giving a better description of her hero Obama.
She also speaks well of King Andrew (Cuomo) with his arrogant voice as her president.
Cuomo cared more about Puerto Rico than this mess of a state, with his many trips and squandering of our taxpayer money.
He pushed legislation in the middle of the night and hid things in budget bills in order to get them passed, including naming a very expensive bridge after his father, and mentioned his mother in regards to infectious disease. Anything to put the Cuomo name every place he can.
David G. DeMarco

Dump public servants who don’t serve well

I’ve been fortunate to have been born and raised in the greatest country in the world. The opportunities afforded to me and all Americans are phenomenal. The road hasn’t always been easy, however the possibilities existed, and fortunately they were more positive than negative.
These possibilities allowed me to pay my own way through college, have a good career in private industry, start a business and survive, and have a family for which I’m very happy and proud.
At this point, you may ask why you are angry
The country that has been so good to me isn’t the country I see today. We have an unforeseen medical epidemic, which could ruin our country both physically and economically.
Some of our political leaders are playing silly stupid games for one and only one reason. The reason is power. They have the audacity to refer to themselves “public servants.” I would rather refer to them as “pigs at the trough.” As an example, what does wind or solar power have to do with our current crisis?
Public service is the police officer, firefighter, nurse, EMT or any other person committed to the health and welfare of their community. During this period of stress, please consider and thank all those small private business owners who are losing a lot of sleep trying to survive. Remember, they are the backbone of our economy.
When the nation solves this current crisis, as a nation, let’s start a movement for term limits.
Bruce Reisner

Politicians letting us down during crisis

There is no flu this year because everyone who has the flu is said to “be a victim of the coronavirus.”
Therein lies the problem. Still the number of people with the flu/virus is slightly below what’s normal for the flu alone the past 10 years. Check it out.
All the noise about it from the president, governors and politicians is because this is an election year and all politicians have jumped on the pandemic bandwagon. It’s unprecedented.
It’s really a shame that so many people have lost their jobs because of the actions your government has taken in this matter. Sure they say they will give everyone about $1,200.
But what the heck is $1,200 going to do for people who live from paycheck to paycheck trying to get by, eat and pay their rent on the minimum wage? It may last a couple of weeks at the most. Then what? There aren’t enough bridges around here for them all to live under.
Workers making a certain amount, say $50,000 and above per year, should get nothing.
Then give minimum wage earners all the money with the poorest working families getting the most, with a graduating downward money scale for persons making up to $50,000. My family and I would be eligible for nothing. Give my share to those who need it most.
Way to go politicians. You blew it big-time this time. Whether it’s the flu or the virus, they can both be deadly. Use caution.
Neil Nusbaum

Look for an effective superintendent

It is no secret that Superintendent Larry Spring and I did not see eye to eye on numerous issues. The biggest being my belief that his administration was too reactive and not proactive. While Superintendent Spring had many successes, such as the partnership with hometown health and his fight for funding, his administration frequently waited until pressured by students (holding prom during Ramadan, handicapped accessibility at our playgrounds) or by parents.
His responses on issues such as potential cuts to the school lunch program, deep fake videos and special education issues were frequently full of double-speak and brush-offs. Numerous parents, myself included, were promised meetings that never came to be or had phone calls left unreturned.
Our students deserve better than a high 50’s graduation rate and inequity in discipline. We need a superintendent who is a futurist, who can see issues coming and prepare before they happen, not be left in a position to give teachers three hours’ notice to prepare for a shutdown.
I implore the board to include not only parents and teachers, but the student council president at the high school, in the selection of a new superintendent — one who will think outside the box and come up with policies that will solve our district’s numerous problems, not just kick them down the road.
Edward Smith

Anti-socialists: Give gov’t check to charity

I have heard that a bunch of you folks who hate the idea of socialism have pledged to tear up the government stimulus check when you receive it.
May I suggest that you donate it to a deserving charity instead?
Bill Shaw
Ballston Spa

Special care needed for Alzheimer’s cases

While the COVID-19 pandemic threatens the health of millions in this country and around the world, the novel coronavirus presents unique challenges for more than 400,000 New Yorkers living with Alzheimer’s and their caregivers.
To help family caregivers navigate the current complex and quickly changing environment, the Alzheimer’s Association is offering additional guidance to families, including:
• Help people living with Alzheimer’s practice safe hygiene. People with Alzheimer’s and other dementia may forget to wash their hands or follow other precautions to ensure safe hygiene. Caregivers are encouraged to be extra vigilant in helping individuals practice safe hygiene.
• Anticipate and prepare that current care and support options may change. As public health containment strategies for COVID-19 escalate during the next several weeks, it’s important for families to anticipate that less help and support may be available.
• Ask residential care facilities about their communication policies. To protect the health of their residents, many facilities are restricting access to outside visitors, so it’s important to ask how you can get updates on your family member’s health and how you can communicate with loved ones during the current crisis. Ask to see if phone calls, including video calls, will be offered and how best to coordinate.
Caring for a loved one during the coronavirus outbreak can add stress for dementia caregivers. We are here if you need us. Call our free, 24/7 Helpline at 800-272-3900 and visit alz.org/COVID19 to learn how you and your loved one with dementia can stay healthy.
Marisa Korytko
The writer is public relations director, Alzheimer’s Association of Northeastern New York.

Cuomo took some ideas from DeBlasio

Initially, New York City Health Commissioner Dr. Oxiris Barbot, Mayor Bill DeBlasio and Gov. Andrew Cuomo told New York City residents to go out about their business, take the subways and not to worry.
Mayor DeBlasio, realizing that more needed to be done, recommended that a shelter-in-place be implemented. Gov. Cuomo chastised Mayor DeBlasio, stating that it was not necessary, and that no one except the governor could make these decisions.
The very next day, Gov. Cuomo informed the public of his plan, which he called Stay-At-Home, aka Matilda’s Law, named after his mother. It was almost the very same plan that Mayor DeBlasio wanted to implement.
The following day, the governor informed the public that he told President Trump that he wanted the president to send to New York City all of the hospital supplies, including ventilators, from every single state so that he could quell the growing numbers with the virus in the city.
New York City now has four temporary hospitals, the use of the Javits Center, a huge temporary hospital in Central Park and the USS Comfort, the Army Corps of Engineers, National Guard and state troopers and hours of air time.
Furthermore, not only is the governor not going to ban New York City residents from fleeing to upstate New York, he wants to send coronavirus patients upstate.
So, Mr. 2024 wannabe (or 2020, if the Democratic super-delegates find a reason) leave some equipment for the other states in order for them to cope with the virus.
Flora L. Ramonowski

Trump’s response focused on himself

On March 29, Dr. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases stated on CNN, “…l ooking at what we’re seeing now, I would say between 100,000 and 200,000 … deaths.” He was estimating that many Americans would die from the corona virus, and millions more would fall ill. Those are huge numbers. The president had his mind set on huge numbers also, just not the same ones.
That afternoon Trump tweeted, oddly in the first person, “President Trump is a ratings hit. Since reviving the daily White House briefing Mr. Trump and his corona virus updates have attracted an average audience of 8.5 million on cable news, roughly the viewership of the season finale of ‘The Bachelor.’ Numbers are continuing to rise…”
What? Dr. Fauci was concerned with fatalities, but Trump was comforted with ratings, bragging about “Monday Night Football type numbers,” followed by, “See you at 5 p.m.” like it was all a game show.
How could the president address a vulnerable nation in a time of crisis and measure his success by TV ratings? He views the pandemic through a telescope, but not like us; he looks the other way, where he sees only himself.
Paul Donahue

Downstaters: Don’t spread your virus here

This is a message to some people that have primary residences in downstate New York, New Jersey and Connecticut that obviously haven’t heard about how to minimize the risk of spreading the virus.
Stay home and minimize contact with people. If you insist on traveling to your vacation properties, you should be bringing enough supplies, because I’m sure the plan is to self-quarantine for a minimum 14 days once there. The supermarkets here are already stressed because of the pandemic.
The people that live here should not have to worry about coming in contact with an influx of people traveling here from areas that are heavily infected with the virus.
Ken Jones
Ballston Spa

Trump reign of terror helped spread virus

President Trump has remained consistently incompetent throughout his reign. In 2018, Trump disbanded the Pandemic Response Team, which left the United States unprepared to deal with pandemics like COVID-19. Previous administrations invested in global health preparedness. During the Ebola outbreak, those investments prevented global catastrophe. In 2019, Trump’s budget cut pandemic threat spending by 67%.  
The United States was aware of the coronavirus in January 2020, yet Trump did nothing but ban flights from China. Flight bans increase the spread of disease, since patients then enter the United States through other countries.
Trump is totally incapable of working with other countries to contain this pandemic. He continues to lie about any facts he feels may harm his political future. His divisiveness persists with threats to withhold assistance to blue state governors who criticize the federal government’s lack of response regarding the need for PPEs and ventilators.
Yet, his base continues to support Trump, despite the damning behavior he exhibits. Be aware, you and your family are not immune to COVID-19. Whether you live in a red or blue state, there will be many unnecessary deaths due to Trump’s inaction and purposeful retributions, literally inflicting his reign of terror on us all.
Doreen Harris

Media needs to get the facts to seniors

My mother is 88 years old. As do many elderly people, she continues to get her news from your paper and the three major networks, NBC, CBS and ABC.
All three of these networks have made a decision to not carry any of the president’s news briefings regarding the COVID-19 virus crisis.
When I inquired at all three networks on March 29 as to why this was the case, I was given several excuses, including the fact that these briefings were streamed live and therefore did not need to be on broadcast news.
My mother does not know how to use a computer. To me, these choices are elitist and discriminatory to the elderly, who may not be computer literate, and the poor, who may not own a computer.
Without the briefings, it is hard for people to know what is going on in our country or what the federal government is doing about controlling the spread of the virus.
This is not the time to be political with lives at stake, especially the elderly. As for your biased coverage, well that has come to be expected.
It would be great to have a newspaper that reports the news rather than shapes the news by cutting and pasting from the New York Times and the Washington Post. It would also be nice to have local networks who do the same.
Nancy Spencer

Hoping for healing in this broken world

Coronavirus: Please heal this broken world. All the borders in the world did not keep us safe. This virus is proof. We are all connected in one universe that God created.
Concetta Cannizzaro

Follow Gov. Cuomo’s guidance on Covid-19

In Edward Nieters’ March 29 letter (“Cuomo’s cure worse than the disease”), he claimed that the shutdowns Gov. Andrew Cuomo has put in place are doing more harm than good. I disagree.
I know the anguish my son-in-law’s family is experiencing as a result of having to close their restaurant. I agree that the economic impact may cause people to become so distraught they become suicidal. Plus, being isolated without normal social interactions and support can add to these feelings. Let’s hope people will seek appropriate help for these feelings.
We do know how COVID-19 is transmitted and that there are carriers. This makes it necessary to require people to stay away from others to stem the spread of the virus. It takes more than hygiene practices.
It would be more devastating to reduce restrictions before we were sure the virus is under control and possibly have a rebound effect, causing reinstatement of restrictions affecting seasonal businesses, too.
We cannot reopen breeding grounds and people need to accept this so the future will be better. I stand by Gov. Cuomo’s handling of this. All of us must earnestly abide by these restrictions, practice disease-prevention hygiene and respect social distancing to get a handle on this ASAP. Let the infectious-disease experts call the shots. Dr. Fauci is doing an excellent job. Economic recovery will be slow, but it will happen. No one wants to be restricted or lose money or income, but do we really have a realistic choice?
Susan Karmo

Let’s work together to get through this

I’ve had enough of the constant infighting between Republicans and Democrats during this crisis.
It is time to put partisan politics aside and remember what unites us even more and should be first.
We are all Americans first and foremost. We need to start putting our country first not political party.
Remember what JFK said, “Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.” Time for us to band together, self-isolate, help your elderly neighbors out by getting them groceries and leaving it for them on their doorsteps so they can safely quarantine, if you can, make masks for them. In essence, what I am telling you is to do what Jesus preached: Love thy neighbor, help them through this crisis.
Together we can make our grandparents proud of us. They were the greatest generation that got our nation through World War II with their willingness to help each other. Let us be the second greatest generation that not only honors our grandparents but saves America as well.
Robin Zucker

Where is criticism for Cuomo and liberals?

The Daily Gazette is once again printing articles from its most liberal submitter, bashing all the Republicans but praising liberal Democrats. It’s total bias against everything President Trump is doing during the coronavirus.
In his March 29 column (“Where’s that ‘deep state’ when we need it”?) Mr. Figliozzi reflects on President Trump as America First, and Vice President Pence’s stilted rhetoric, really? Why no criticism for Gov. Cuomo’s lying about how many respirators found already in New York state and the need for more. Really?
How about naming the bridge after his father and his new coronavirus law, as he called it, naming it after his mother Matilda. Ego, sure thing. Nothing to criticize there.
You failed to mention that the polls overwhelmingly supported President Trump’s response to the virus. Remember Trump wanted borders closed and flights banned from certain locations. That could have stopped, or at the very least slowed down, the spread of the virus. It was Cuomo who spoke on live TV and said New York loves everyone. Everyone’s welcome in New York state. How’s that working out now, Mr. Figliozzi? So, do you and most New York citizens still want everyone to come to New York now?
Rick Splawnik

Cuomo reaches new low with St. Clare’s

I have been watching Gov. Cuomo foolishly squandering the taxpayers’ money with foolish projects and ignoring the important projects for many years. But now he has reached a new low.
Not only has he totally ignored the St. Clare’s Hospital pensioners who lost their pensions due to an erroneously mandated closing of their hospital and the failure of New York s to live up to their promise for funding of the pension fund.
But now, he has the audacity to send letters to these same people asking them to return to work as volunteers due to the coronavirus.
He talks about compassion. He talks about helping others, but only when he is on the receiving end. After watching this governor, seeing what he does, listening to what he says, and seeing what he does not do, I can only conclude that somewhere, someplace, in this country, there is a village missing its idiot.
Ken Benson

What is airport doing to stop virus spread?

What is the Albany airport doing to address the coronavirus virus situation? According to the website, the answer is nothing. The only alert has to do with a $6 parking.
Other airports such as Denver report modifying lines to increase separation, installing hand wash dispensers all over, handing out wipes to passengers as they board to wipe down their seats, increased frequency and intensity of cleaning restrooms
Again what is Albany doing?
Joe Meuse

Long way to go to  for equitable wages

The League of Women Voters has long advocated for equal pay. Just as critical is access to better jobs and living wage jobs, and access to affordable and quality childcare.
Many middle class and union blue-collar jobs eliminated in the Great Recession of 2008-09 were replaced by low-wage jobs. While unemployment numbers are low nationally, they mask a stark reality: 44% of workers in low-paying part-time and temporary work with no benefits, or security, bring home less than $18,000 a year.
Living wages jobs are out of reach for many New Yorkers. Ninety percent of the jobs in New York pay less than $32,000 a year, according to the Albany-based New York Association of Training and Employment Professionals.
In 1920, when women finally gained the right to vote, those who fought for women’s equality for decades certainly thought their struggle was over. This year, the average woman works until March 31 to earn what the average white man earned the previous year.
Clearly there is still much work to be done.
Barbara Thomas
Saratoga Springs
The writer is co-president of the League of Women Voters Saratoga.

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