VanBlarcum deserves your support
In response to Ms. Kathy Gordon’s letter in last week’s edition I submit a rebuttal. Law enforcement cooperation is at an all-time high. The evidence is so overwhelming apparent. Paul VanBlarcum has received the endorsements of The Ulster County Police Chiefs’ Association, The New York State Union of Police Associations and 90 percent of all the Ulster County PBAs. Their main reason for endorsing him recognizes him as to having all agencies working together as a team in the best interest of the residents and visitors to Ulster County.
Paul has taken the lead in the fight against the opioid problem. He has led efforts for Ulster County to be designated a High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area. This gets the federal government to supply training and funding for investigations. Paul formed URGENT to get all federal, state and local police agencies working as a task force and not individually. Paul started a Vivitrol program for the inmates in custody who have drug addictions. Paul mandated every deputy be trained in the application of the lifesaving medication Narcan. Paul is training civilians at no additional cost to the taxpayers. Paul has drop boxes in all of the sheriff’s office stations for people to dispose of unused medication before they end up being unsafely consumed, sold on the street or flushed into our water system and harming the environment.
A reference of previous lawsuits is made on hot-button topics. It is the nature of the business. I have seen Paul personally work to defend the frivolous lawsuits and examine each complaint on its factual merit. If policies needed to be changed, he did exactly that. Don’t read the headlines, follow it through the court and see the end result. Political accusations do not keep communities safe, good police administration and working with all the citizens does.
Paul is responsible to all the citizens. His opponent has not been involved in one law enforcement-bettering issue ever in Ulster County. Paul led the fight as a minority Democrat when the new jail was being considered. He was right in that fight. Paul’s foresight and predictions are ringing true today.
Paul’s budget management is not to be taken lightly. Paul is responsible for approximately 10 percent of the entire county budget. Paul has consistently come in under budget every year, managing his budget. Paul is able to do this because of his 42 years of in-house experience.
In closing, the sheriff doesn’t make his own laws. The sheriff enforces laws made by all lawmakers and upholds the Constitution. I encourage all citizens to vote for proven good management and support Paul at the primary and general elections.
Frank P. Faluotico Jr.
Ulster County undersheriff (retired)
For the children
None of us exit childhood without scars, but with work, love and luck many of us someday enter into healing processes that allow us to lead relatively healthy, helpful and happy lives and to do no harm, or as little as possible, to our equally scarred companions on Earth.
The separation of a child from her parent, however, leaves scars that may never heal, and so we worry about immigrant children, and about how their forcible, sudden, and prolonged isolation from their parents will mold them into the adults they become, and how these traumatized adults will in turn treat the partners, offspring, friends, acquaintances and societies with whom they engage.
A second group of children deserve our worry as well: the children of Trump believers, and in particular those devout enough to drag their kids to his revivals.
YouTube offers a far less vulnerable viewing spot than these parents afford their children, yet even at my safe distance the images shake me; and I shudder at the denunciations and threats fired off by the Divider and echoed by his devotees — if not nearly as deafeningly, or persuasively, in my ears as in the ears of the children, who, just like their immigrant counterparts, cling to and rely on, listen to and learn from their parents.
The child at the rally is luckier than the child at the border: He has a parent’s hand to cling to. But he feels that hand gnarling into a fist, and imprints the itch to swing that fist and his dad’s expectation that when the time comes he, the dutiful son, will swing a fist, too, against the same enemies, and probably against a few other enemies of the day as well.
Then, of course, there’s a third group of children to worry about — our own.
Those who put the world and its children in harm’s way for this president are guilty of sins of commission. Maybe these people had it harder than most, and their scars never healed, or haven’t yet, and we should forgive them. And maybe not.
But one thing seems clear: If any of the rest of us fail to vote this year — with the House within reach and hope hurtling beyond reach; with every child facing a dire future rapidly spinning into a dystopian present — it will be hard not to see that failure as an unforgivable act of omission.
The waves of wrath
Saving Private Francis. He is not a head of state. This is not the pope. He is not king of any land. And although I do, of course, abhor many of the behaviors Eric is accused of I am even more appalled at what has been smeared about him across the pages of the newspaper. This man has already been duly and severely punished by losing his jobs with the esteemed Chronogram magazine and his gig on the radio and several other positions. The editor of Chronogram explained the situation about Eric in concise and appropriate terms. He had the good sense to omit the sleazy descriptions of what went on behind Eric’s closed doors and in his private emails. I consider it criminal to publish in gory detail every one of those women’s accusations, some of which reek of mere disgruntlement.
I cringe at the woman who consented to Eric’s request of masturbating in front of her because she felt afraid to say No. There was no reason given why she should be scared other than Eric just sitting there and asking. Why not simply grab her purse and walk out?! And for good measure whack Eric across the head with said purse on her way out the door. If the woman does not possess the guts or wherewithal for this kind of resolute decision then why would she even agree to come to this man’s home, a virtual stranger, and knowing she’ll be alone with him? That goes beyond all common sense.
Why does the paper deem it okay to smear across its pages the sexual fantasies going on in Eric’s head? Because you know who else harbors fantasies like that, even verbalizes them or even acts them out? To watch a couple make love, to watch a woman masturbate … these are the sexual fantasies of just about every man and half the women across the universe! Yes, numerous of Eric’s behaviors are predatory and appalling if proven to be the truth. But every sin is forgivable; and certainly not every sin of an imperfect man needs to be printed in detail in a public newspaper!
Policies to deal with sexual harassment have become a requirement in the corporate and educational world only in the last five or 10 years. Before that it was the way of the land all over the world that women are fair game for being groped, whistled at, or otherwise harassed. It was always degrading and inexcusable behavior, but thank goddess it has finally become a punishable offense. However, it is still not right to publicly accuse a man who once groped a woman’s rear end 20 years ago while she posed for a photo with him. Or who had the gall to sniff her hair. Here – I admit it out loud and in public: I am a woman, a mother, a registered nurse, and I have, more than once in my past life, squeezed a good-looking man’s butt without his prior approval. And oh, the sexual fantasies I harbor in my head or even discuss sometimes within solid walls with my friends … Those of you who are without such thoughts, be my guest to cast the first stone.
One last time — Eric’s predatory behaviors and acts of sexual harassment, if indeed true, are sleazy, perverse and punishable to a degree. And he has paid a high price already by having lost some prestigious jobs. And it is enough. He’s an imperfect man in an imperfect world and enough is enough. I often met this man when Eric was a frequent and much appreciated customer of mine back in the olden days of the Wildflower Café. He was courteous, generous, respectable and therefore most welcome every single time he visited the restaurant. I have not been in touch with him for 20 years except to read his horoscopes on very rare occasions. I do not even know why I feel compelled to speak up for him except for my understanding that I am myself a respectable yet imperfect woman in an imperfect universe. No sinner deserves to be smashed by boulders as has been done to Eric Francis of Planet Waves.
Letter for Congressman Faso
Congressman Faso, you are one slick operator!
If the November 6th ballot contained only Delgado and the Green Party candidate, you would not be calling for a debate but rather employing what you do best, “run for cover.”
But enter three “spoilers” (whom it wouldn’t surprise me to find out down the road, were actually “republican operatives”) and you, Mr. Faso see it as your chance to “divide the liberal vote and conquer.”
Real slick especially since you still have oil on you from your rap music/he’s not one of us campaign against Delgado.
It grieves me to have to say that you might have learned these tactics growing up in New York City … but for your information, we don’t act that way in the Mid-Hudson Valley.