Free press is vital for accountability
In watching an interesting TV show called Decades, I got a pretty good memory lesson on how the CBS Evening News evolved through the years. Point being “News.”
Most people probably forgot that CBS News set the bar for journalistic broadcasting and integrity in the reporters, journalists, producers and correspondents. At one point in time, and I believe it still holds true today, 60 Minutes set the bar for the guys that always got it right.
However after Walter Cronkite, “The Most Trusted Man In America” was forced into retirement and Dan Rather took over, (In case no one remembers, he got the Zapruder film of the Kennedy assassination, the biggest scoop of the century), things began to take a different turn.
Notwithstanding the attempt to catch President “W” in a lie, the news in this country fell apart when people in power dictate the narrative and cover up the truth. The phrase “Fake News” is not only insulting to the press, but the danger involved in disparaging the validity of the press and the integrity of reporters trying to ascertain the truth as much as possible sends a bad message to the youth today that are ignorant of any knowledge in the origins of the power of the press, and yes “Watergate.”
I have already forgotten more about what these kids today know about stupidity, ignorance and what the damaging power of false rhetoric contributes to today’s narrative coming from the White House.
City chicken permits could be beneficial
I am hoping that the city of Schenectady takes notice of the increase in backyard farming and permits the use of backyard hens for the production of eggs for personal use.
When properly regulated, they are extremely beneficial to the environment, as hens do not make significant amounts of noise, but do an excellent job at keeping tick populations low.
All negative concerns can easily be addressed with a few restrictions such as: prohibiting the sale of eggs, number of hens permitted per family, plan approval for the location and size of coops, and feed storage regulations.
The ability to generate food during this pandemic could make a huge difference. But in the future, this can be viewed as a human rights issue that spans the boundaries of age, wealth, race, gender and religion.
Self-sufficiency is important for mental health. It can give the elderly purpose, aid their nutritional health and ease their financial burdens. It can help struggling families make up a portion of their food budget. It allows children the opportunity for responsibility and to see the fruits of their labors.
A small allowance for a chicken permit could really make a large difference in our community.
America must rally around president
The coronavirus is spreading so quickly, it can be categorized as a war. I remember as a child, during World War II, how we as a country got behind the war effort.
We were put on rations of gasoline, sugar, butter and meats to support the war effort. Large posters were printed with Uncle Sam pointing his finger, saying “I Want You” and a battlefield poster stating, “Stand Behind the Man, Behind the Gun.” Both were scary.
Somehow, over the years, we lost a lot of our camaraderie of World War II. Instead of working together to beat the coronavirus, we make demeaning statements about President Trump being unfit for office. One letter accused Trump of slowing the process, controlling the virus, causing many deaths. How can our president do his job with citizens having such negative attitudes? This virus will be controlled, but we must pull together, as we did during WWII.
Let us all, “Stand Behind the Man Behind the Gun.” As difficult as it may be, that man is Trump.
Keep coronavirus patients downstate
Could anyone please explain to me why we are being told to distance ourselves from each other, work from home when possible, close schools and only go out of our home when absolutely necessary, to mention a few of our current restrictions?
While at the same time, we are bringing confirmed cases of Covid-19 patients into our area for treatment, increasing the exposure of our doctors, nurses, support staff and others to this deadly virus.
In an effort to contain this virus, wouldn’t it be wiser to send us non-infected patients that need hospitalization and free up beds in New York City for Covid-19 patients?
Why no press briefings in county?
Each day I see both the Albany county executive and health commissioner providing a press briefing about the pandemic as it relates to Albany County and see stories in our hometown Gazette relating to these briefings.
Why do we not see briefing and stories relating to our county coming from our Schenectady county manager or public health officer? Are they hiding the facts from our county taxpayers, are they incompetent, or do they think the people paying their salaries don’t deserve to be informed about the worst crisis that has ever hit the world? If the county legislature does not step up and see that this information is provided, perhaps at election time we should think about replacing them.
We need to share resources in crisis
The Daily Gazette’s April 5 editorial “Cuomo risks upstate lives with order to take ventilators” was shameful. Does the Daily Gazette want to be in a position where upstate hospitals kept ventilators that, thankfully ultimately weren’t needed because of effective social distancing, in reserve, while thousands downstate died from lack of them?
In contrast, the state of Oregon donated 140 ventilators, Massachusetts medical supplies, and China 1,000 ventilators to New York state. By the logic of this newspaper, all those parties should have kept that equipment for themselves, just in case it was needed in the future.
The Gazette accused the governor of panicking, yet the editorial was itself panicky, laying out a dire scenario where there might not be enough ventilators for upstate residents.
Paradoxical after painting a “black helicopters are coming” picture of the National Guard seizing ventilators, the editorial then stated that upstate medical facilities should volunteer surplus ventilators for downstate, and if they don’t then the state government should shut them down till they comply.
We are at war with the virus. A legal fight between state health officials and hospital lawyers isn’t a workable deployment plan. We didn’t win World War II by sanctioning and suing each other after Pearl Harbor.
In a desperate battle there comes the hour of decision where a general must commit his remaining reserves to the place in the line where the outcome hangs in the balance, between victory and defeat, between life and death. For Gov. Andrew Cuomo, that hour has come.
Free press is vital for accountability