Letters (September 18-25)


The brink of disaster

This Sunday there will be a massive gathering dedicated to saving our planet. It is the People’s Climate March on Sept. 21 in New York City www.peoplesclimate.org. The goal is to call attention to the catastrophic dangers we all face due to climate change/global warming and its consequences due largely to the world’s dependence on the burning of fossil fuels — coal, oil, and natural gas — and their impact on our environment. The increased concentration of CO2, carbon dioxide, creating the “greenhouse effect” is real; CO2 discharged into out atmosphere will last for 1000 years! The march is scheduled at this time so as to impact on the UN Climate Summit on Sept. 23 drawing around 120 heads of state.

There are some, including our columnist Santos Lopez, who would have us not worry about this — like Alfred E. Neuman of Mad Comics: “What, Me Worry?” — but I believe that there is very much to worry about. If you’d like to know more, watch www.watchdisruption.com for an excellent film about this. Those of you who know all about this and/or are planning to march need no more information. However, if you are not informed about this global crisis, please watch this film and draw your own conclusions. We are close to the brink of disaster, the tipping point where we will not be able to do anything about it. We owe it to our children, our nieces and nephews, and their children and grandchildren to join the efforts of climate change activists and call attention to the need for dramatic changes. Please care!

Meyer Rothberg


Folly of another war

I am saddened that our president, who rode to election promising to end wars, has once again convinced us to go to war. I am also saddened that there is so little protest. This is so different than during the Vietnam War, when the conscience of the American people, and especially our youth, rallied us to action that eventually led to peace.


All this will have tragic consequences. The violence of terrorism cannot be eradicated by more violence; the many wars of the last 13 years should by now have shown us the futility of taking up arms.

What, then, can we do? Martin Luther King, Jr., points to the only answer:

“Hate begets hate; violence begets violence; toughness begets a greater toughness. We must meet the forces of hate with the power of love.

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. Hate multiplies hate, violence multiplies violence, and toughness multiplies toughness in a descending spiral of destruction … The chain reaction of evil — hate begetting hate, wars producing more wars — must be broken, or we shall be plunged into the dark abyss of annihilation.”

May these prophetic words rally us as a country to think globally! This new war will only bring need and suffering and produce millions of more refugees. It will also sow seeds of hatred in the hearts of a new generation of children and young people, who will see no other option than to resort to violence in the future.

I know that many who read this letter may not share my faith, but we must pray for our country and for all our young men and women who take up arms in defense of our freedom. May we also have the courage to pray for our enemies.

Johann Christoph Arnold
Senior Pastor, Bruderhof, Rifton


Thank Gibson for Farm Bill

Virtually every sector of New York’s economy benefits from the U.S. Farm Bill. The federal government’s agricultural and rural development programs are absolutely crucial to Upstate New York and the country as a whole.

The Farm Bill sets federal policy; including conservation efforts, dairy and crop insurance programs, medical research into Lyme disease, infrastructure development (most notably broadband programs), beginning farmer and specialty crop programs, plus farm-to-market promotional and incentive programs.

Our Congressman Chris Gibson recognizes this and as an integral member of the House Agriculture Committee, made sure to help draft the best bill Upstate New York could hope for.

Hearing young Mr. Eldridge say that he would have voted against the Farm Bill tells me one thing about him: he does not understand the district he would like to represent. Nor does he understand the district to which he previously moved in order to run; which is currently represented by Farm Bill-supporting Democratic Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney.Sean Eldridge just doesn’t get it. He sees the Farm Bill as another opportunity to score political points by claiming that it takes food from the mouths of the poor.

Do you think President Obama, Chuck Schumer, or any of the other 132 Democrats (and two Independents) would have supported a bill to do such an inhumane thing? In fact, when preparing to sign the Farm bill, President Obama said it assures “America’s children don’t go hungry” and “will continue reducing our deficits without gutting the vital assistance programs millions of hardworking Americans count on to help put food on the table for their families. “

President Obama recognizes that this bill ensures our Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP or Food Stamps) and Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) remain strong and able to meet the needs of our nation.

Mr. Eldridge’s claim that this bill does not live up to this commitment is both dishonest and untrue.

We’ve all seen the bumper sticker” “Got Food? Thank a Farmer”? I’d like to make a new one: “Got a Farm Bill? Thank Congressman Gibson.”

Or how about: “Got a Farm Bill? Thank God Sean Eldridge is not in Congress.”

Robert M. Bishop


Fundraiser success

On Friday Sept. 12 we had our first time ever Ladies Night Out entitled Ladies Glam Party – Old World Hollywood Glam. When we first began organizing the event our goals were simply trying to get the word out and perhaps break even. We intended to make this our annual event to raise funding to help local families with a child with cancer or a serious illness. Our fundraising event at SPAF in Saugerties, far surpassed any of our expectations. We were completely sold out, with over 230 quests, incredibly generous local sponsors, and 40 vendors.

Because of our amazing community support we were able to raise over $8,000 to donate to Nick’s Fight to Be Healed Foundation, and the Myles of Smyles Foundation, two charities that offer financial assistance to families in Ulster County and neighboring counties. We so greatly appreciate the overwhelming support. On a side note, great fun was had by all.

We would like to thank our sponsors Sawyer Motors, Helsmoortel Reality and Insurance, Town and Country Liquors, MHVFCU, ELNA Magnetics, John Mullen and Sons, Kingston Nissan, Village Apothecary, Ulster Federal Credit Union, Two Brothers Deli and Pizza, The Ivy Lodge, Angela Gaffney-Smith, Dr. Debra Koehn, Andreassen Properties, The Reis Group, Sawyer Saving Bank, and Naccarato Insurance. We would like to thank our 40 vendors for their time and talents, Psychic Medium Adrienne DeSalvo, The Soul Purpose Band, The Price family at SPAF, and Lucky Chocolates. We would also like to thank the businesses that donated silent auction and raffle items What an incredible evening and we are so blessed to live in such a giving community. We are sure to make this an annual event .

Nancy Swart, Miriam Adams, Sue Sacher, Peggy Almquist