The views and opinions expressed in our letters section are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Hudson Valley One. You can submit a letter to the editor here.
Watching President Biden’s speech today, August 22, on Afghanistan, I couldn’t imagine any way he could have been more pathetic. He still doesn’t admit that, while the decision to pull out of Afghanistan is supported by the majority of Americans, the timing and the plan were botched. He should have waited until later in the year and the order of troops first instead of last. Right now, he’s relying on the Taliban to behave, and with thousands of potential hostages, he has few options if they don’t.
He obviously read the speech, and the worst part was when he took questions. He had the names of the reporters he was to call, had no idea where they were; if they hadn’t answered when he called their name, he’d still be looking for them. It appeared he had the questions beforehand, as he was reading the answers.
When the Nazis drove the British out of Norway and Neville Chamberlain was trying to spin what happened to a member of his party, Leopold Amery quoted Oliver Cromwell, telling Chamberlain, “You have sat too long for any good you may have been doing. In the name of God, go.” I wonder if there’s any Democrat who will have the decency to tell Biden.
What are they hiding?
From the Daily Freeman’s January 22, 2021 article regarding the proposed Comeau addition, councilwoman Laura Ricci voiced concern at a Town Board meeting that the public won’t have an ample opportunity to review the expansion plan: “We were going to have a meeting where…[anybody] could take a look at the models.”
Six months later, with none of those proposed meetings scheduled, at a Town Board meeting, according to Hudson Valley One, Councilman Heppner said that the board will discuss plans to make the public aware of the project and the upcoming vote, including possible meetings at the main firehouse on Route 212 and the other three firehouses in Wittenberg, Lake Hill and Zena, with the model on display. We shall see if the Town Board will allow the Commission on Civic Design to explain to the public their concerns regarding the plan and form of the design.
Listening to all of New Paltz
In my 23 years as a citizen of New Paltz, our town has been a great protector of open space and fierce advocate for the environment, with an incredibly engaged and effective Environmental Conservation Board and Climate Smart Community Task Force. Unfortunately, at the same time, we have been less successful in ensuring that our community is truly accessible to all. Our taxes remain unsustainably high for most who would seek home ownership, and we lack enough affordable housing that really welcomes any and all to reside in New Paltz. And, while we say we are committed to diversity, equity and inclusion, until we center the voices and concerns of our more marginalized citizens, we remain a community that largely serves the white and wealthy.
It is without question that affordable and equitable housing is a growing concern in Ulster County in general, and New Paltz specifically. The data shared by Evelyn Wright, Deputy County Executive on Housing, over the last several months at Town and Village meetings is unambiguous and requires immediate action. We must assume that affordable housing is the issue of greatest importance to New Paltz citizens who lack the capacity for home ownership and whose needs are regularly subordinated.
In the next few weeks and months, the Town Board will be discussing the need for laws mandating registration and maintenance requirements for rental residential and vacant residential properties, as well as creating regulations that govern short-term (less than 30-day) rentals in our town (outside the village). It is my hope that these laws will ensure that property management and safety standards are met, illegal rental units are eliminated and short-term rentals are permitted in appropriately zoned business districts (like hotels) or in owner occupied residences only.
By enacting these kinds of common-sense, community-sustaining laws, we not only protect the rights of both renters and homeowners and ensure our zoning laws are being met, but also increase the stock of well-maintained long-term rental properties that are available at “reasonable” prices to all citizens who wish to live in our community.
Of course, as we consider these proposed laws, we want to hear from New Paltz residents whose opinions and suggestions will ensure that any new laws are fair and best address the wants, needs and rights of our citizenry.
New Paltz Town Councilman
You can’t fix stupid
“If you’re very, very stupid, how can you possibly realize that you’re very, very stupid? You’d have to be relatively intelligent to realize how stupid you really are.” It’s easy to say that most Trump supporters are dumb. (Try it! So easy!) He has manipulated many American people into believing everything he says without any basis; Trumpers love to eat the bullshit and spit it back out in our direction as gospel.
Now let’s have a real blowback. You, Mr. Civile, and the other MAGA idiots have enabled an autocrat and now a proto-fascist GOP sensibility to exist; no one should let you off the hook for that. You remain handcuffed to conspiracy nonsense and give CPR to a fringe element that is now the beating heart of your new Republican Party.
Your often-repeated lies don’t work. Get your facts from credible sources, not moronic right-wing faux news outlets or reactionary shock-talk radio, and certainly not from conspiratorial-belching social media. Do the research yourself, so you won’t be sucked in by misinformation. And stop spreading untruths.
As a leader, Trump set the tone for the nation. His constant use of name-calling, bullying and lying certainly seemed to make people think that it was acceptable in the U.S. these days. Well, it isn’t, and I found a need to push back. I am proud to be a Trump hater… I believe words matter. I believe morality matters too. I believe the leader of our nation should be a model of how our citizens should treat each other, including all members of our globalized world.
It’s very clear that you applaud Trumpian fealty and its astonishingly bad, dishonest, and unchristian-like behavior. You’ve never once crafted a readable and negative criticism of him. You seem to enjoy spreading his BS and the many right-wing talking points on these pages of the Hudson Valley One.
Intellectual dishonesty is the enemy of intellectual humility. You, Mr. Civile, are openly dishonest time and time again on these Letters to the Editor pages. It’s not just about “not lying;” it’s about stating the truth when you know it, hiding nothing, twisting nothing and leaving nothing out.
The rhetoric of Trump and his right-wing constituency – which you are a part of, Mr. Civile – makes me feel unsafe in my own country. Why? I think because it’s a very dangerous fascist-leaning and morally bereft cult beholden to an anti-American ideology. Not what the Republican Party is supposed to be about. Your obsessive namechecking me when letter-writing to make some delusional political points only confirms my “can’t fix stupid” belief of you. Thus, “I have no regard for you, your current GOP or what you or they think of me.”
What Trump Republicans/supporters like George Civile don’t get is that succumbing to frustration and thinking of them as stupid may be wrong and even unhelpful, but it’s also…hear me…charitable.
The Kabul Airport Tango
Thousands rushed the tarmac,
flooding across the runway to board
planes overloaded with other Afghans.
Some cling to a departing U.S. Air Force transport plane,
only to be rejected by their Yankee dance partners.
Discarded like an old lover, turned away…
from the last dance.
Dayl Wise, Viet Nam veteran
World War V
The Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine is now approved by the FDA, and soon Moderna’s vaccine will be approved. If FDA approval was the reason you have yet to be vaccinated, your time has come.
Getting vaccinated protects you, but more importantly, it protects everyone else. This is a community issue. While I understand that people are frightened, we won’t get out of the pandemic unless many more people get vaccinated. Herd immunity simply will not work with COVID-19.
This is a war against a virus, and many people are afraid to fight. Just like in World War II, people didn’t want to fight the Nazis. We had to draft people to fight the Nazis; otherwise hardly anyone would. Why not? Because it was dangerous! I don’t think the vaccine is as dangerous as the Nazis, but it is scary. I get it.
People tell me they’re afraid of the long-term side effects. I have a problem with assuming the long-term side effects could only be bad. They could just as easily be good. Perhaps the long-term side effects are delayed senility or improved longevity or decreased cancer risk.
Assuming that its side effects could only be negative is a bit pessimistic. But the long-term side effects of not getting vaccinated are certainly negative: negative effects on society, our mental health (especially for children), the health of our economy et cetera. More people need to get vaccinated, or we could be dealing with this pandemic for many more years.
Ninety-six percent of American doctors are vaccinated against coronavirus – not because we are especially brave, but because we understand what not getting vaccinated does to us all.
The bottom line is you need to get vaccinated – not just for yourself, but for everybody else. This requires a degree of selflessness that not everybody has, but I think a lot more people have it than do not.
Walgreens pharmacies have COVID vaccinations available. Kingston and Highland Walgreens have the Pfizer vaccine; New Paltz has the Moderna. All are effective, and all will be FDA-approved. I hope you join us in protecting everyone.
Stephen Weinman, MD
FirstCare Medical Center
Article on Putt Corners Cemetery
A paragraph in Erin Quinn’s article on 8/21/2021 about the Putt Corners Cemetery is inaccurate. She says: “We have the African American burial ground that is literally on someone’s private property, which I think is so cool that they agreed to have it recognized there.”
According to Susan Stessin-Cohn, the town historian, and my own research, the owners at 176 Huguenot Street did not approve the signage and commemorative bench on their property. Therefore, both are on 174 Huguenot Street, thanks to Janet Salt, the owner of that property. No ground-penetrating radar has been done, and therefore, based only on Susan’s research so far, it is assumed that there is a burial ground at that location.
A bill is pending in Congress that will protect undocumented African American burial grounds: https://blog.sevenponds.com/something-special/congressional-bill-seeks-to-protect-undocumented-african-american-burial-grounds.
Tony B’s final letter
It is only fitting that we would share a final “letter” on my dad’s behalf. It is with tremendous sadness that we bore witness to my dad leaving this Earth, but with greater joy that we know he is rejoicing with our Savior.
Anthony Bonagura, born to John “Jack” and Kathryn on January 13, 1946, passed away in the early morning hours of August 20 at 75 years old. He lived life fully and with abundant and contagious joy.
Raised in Gardiner, New York, he spent his childhood on a farm, on dirt roads, on baseball fields, at the Gardiner dump, in the Gardiner Hotel, making the best memories in a small town with his friends and his three brothers, John, Ronnie and Allan, affectionately known as the Bonagura boys. Their stories could fill a book and leave so much to be longed for.
After graduating New Paltz High School, he graduated Orange County Community College before completing his Health and Physical Education degree at Morehead State University. Right after graduation, he enlisted in the US Army and served in the Vietnam War, where he made the very best of friends, and met the love of his life and created a beautiful family.
His entire career was spent as a recreation supervisor at Wallkill Correctional Facility, where he would proudly say he “played basketball for a living,” with one of his best friends for a boss. He would host tournaments at the prison with teams that would come in simply because Tony B asked, or sometimes challenged them. After 28 years, in 2001, he retired the same day as his boss, just like he wanted and planned for, likely for all 28 years. Embracing the inmates as friends, sharing our family with them once they were released, he just genuinely and purely lived and loved like Christ.
He leaves behind his wife, Snow, of 51 years, and their children and grandchildren: Thuy and Madison; Snow Lynn and Lee and their children, Caleb Anthony and Kendall “full of grace”; and Tanya and Omar and their children Kaela, Abigail and Little “O.” He is thrilled to be reunited with his first grandson, Michael, on streets of gold in heaven. In addition, he leaves his three brothers, John, Ronnie and Allan, sisters-in-law, nieces and nephews, grandnieces and -nephews, cousins, his CICV brothers and their families, and countless friends he has made along the way. Tony B will be cheering us on from the bleachers of Heaven; there’s no doubt about it.
The family will celebrate together immediately, and every time we gather will be a celebration of his life. A New York celebration will be at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, we will be creating a scholarship in Tony’s name, yet to be determined. Donations can be mailed to: Snow Bonagura, 225 Fischer Road, Fort Mill, SC.
Tanya & Omar Santos
Snow Lynn & Lee Clark
Thuy Bonagura & Madison Braren
Won’t the anti-Israel contingent ever give up? In Mullenneaux’s letter to the editor, we now see a new fairy tale starring Israel as such a horrible country. However, the major “items” she leaves out in her “thought experiment” are:
1. Gaza is controlled entirely by Hamas, a universally recognized terrorist organization that was elected by the Palestinians.
2. This terrorist organization cares very little about the lives of their citizens, evidenced by members of Hamas placing munitions next to and tunnels under homes and near schools – even UN-operated ones. Those actions make their citizens human shields and provide the world with cynical propaganda photos.
3. Hamas, the terrorist organization, takes money donated by outside organizations in order to improve the lives (e.g., with medicine and food) of the people of Gaza and uses the funds to build tunnels and buy munitions.
4. Israel began the process of self-determination in Gaza with the signing of the Camp David accords in September of 1978. However, because of Yasser Arafat and then Hamas, Israel has been forced to protect all Israelis (Jew or Arab) from the constant terrorism by Hamas.
Ms. Mullenneaux, the equivalent of your current foolish scenario would be for you to postulate that the US (a democratic country) should have done nothing in response to 9/11.
My friend (let’s call her Mama) really enjoys reading Hudson Valley One’s Feedback section. Because she tends to believe what she reads, I sent her the following song to encourage her to evaluate the opinions of letter-writers with a critical eye. Moreover, I advised her that the song works best to the tune of Bob Dylan’s “Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again.” I also told her not to share it with the faint of heart, and warned her that it would not be appreciated by anyone who believes that God makes “promises he don’t keep.”
Greta Thunberg’s in her driveway
She bought a new electric car
It doesn’t burn any gasoline
But it won’t take her too far
Neil’s sending me this message:
“You know the right is always wrong”
It made me want to scream and shout
Instead, I wrote this “piss poor” song
Oh Mama, will this nonsense ever end?
They’re sending propaganda
To Hudson Valley One again
Lisa sent in some “honest talk”
And Lisa, she would never lie
But when I read her honest letter
I had to write this here reply:
Lisa told a tale of Israel
As if she had nothing to hide
But her tale was lacking honesty
‘Cos Lisa didn’t tell Israel’s side
Oh Mama, will this nonsense ever end…
Oh, the vaccine crowd they’re writing
They have news they want to share
They send in letters now and then
To show they really care
They give their view of vaccines
And they furnish all this proof
And they cite their favorite scientists
And claim they have the truth
Oh Mama, will this nonsense ever end…
There’s trouble in the Middle East
They’re saying Israel’s to blame
Even when she’s been attacked
They always say the same
They say “Israel’s an occupier:
A nation that lives for war”
But when she gave up land for peace
You know they always asked for more
Oh Mama, will this nonsense ever end…
Oh, the Democrats are saying
“The Congress should pass our laws”
But when their laws are questioned
They can’t defend their costly flaws
They’re saying Joe’s so empathetic
And Donald Trump was just so bad
They say their side’s the right one
But I think their side’s so sad
Oh Mama, will this nonsense ever end…
The truth died last week
It was buried by a girl named Jen
She wouldn’t answer all the questions
But said she’d “circle back” again
Jen said although Joe’s a Catholic
He overcame that fatal flaw
And then she said bills that are pro-life
Should be against the law
Oh, Mama, will this nonsense ever end…
Well, the troops moved out yesterday
Joe’s resolution for his plan was strong
The plan would have been successful
But almost everything went wrong
William said Joe should have no regrets
Even though it turned out so bad
He told us Joe’s plan was perfect
‘Cos it was the best one that he had
Oh Mama, will this nonsense ever end…
Andrew Cuomo is Neil’s hero
Despite the women he may have abused
‘Cos he took away Neil’s COVID fears
With “truthful” briefings that kept him amused
But you know Neil failed to mention
All those nursing home folks who died
Or that 12,000 deaths were unreported
Because his hero Andrew Cuomo lied
Oh Mama, will this nonsense ever end…
“Texas’ voting reforms threaten democracy”
At least that what some writers say
But when the reforms came to a vote
The Dem legislators, they ran away
They said “We’re democracy’s defenders
And that’s why we did what we did today
If we must defend democracy by not voting
It’s a price that we’re willing to pay”
Oh Mama, will this nonsense ever end?
They’re sending propaganda
to Hudson Valley One again
Move Woodstock town offices to Lasher site
The ad hoc Lasher Property Working Group has come up with an enlightened reuse plan for the Lasher Funeral Home property on Tinker Street. Under the plan, they would see moving the entire Woodstock town office complex to the Lasher site and add a municipal recreation space. In the process, most of the open space behind Lasher would be protected from development. A potential bonus would be proximity to police and court buildings a short distance away.
I’m joining with councilman Loren Rose, who expressed support for the idea. My support is premised on the economic practicality of the move as well as seeing it as an example of sensible development in our increasingly changing town landscape.
I would go a few steps further: I would favor moving the Woodstock Historical Society up the Comeau Drive to the current town office site once vacated, thereby enabling them to expand, have a permanent collection on display and have increased size for special shows and an expanded educational role. Their current site could either be sold or repurposed.
All of this “puzzle part” juggling would also enhance the utility of the soon-to-be-“old” Woodstock Library site, which is conveniently wedged in between the police and court buildings and possible new town office site. After some renovation, it could become a magnet for professional offices and broaden an eminently sustainable plan.
Douglas I. Sheer
Become a bug activist!
Pollinator gardening is becoming very popular. More people are turning some part of their lawns into fields where bugs, bees and birds are fed and their life cycles sustained.
There is growing awareness that these creatures rely on native plants to lay eggs and/or feed their young.
Due to consumer interest, some nurseries are displaying signs on some plants stating “pollinator friendly.” That’s good.
What isn’t so good is that the same plants might have been treated with insecticides which would harm the pollinators we wish to protect. We consumers need to ask our local nurseries whether this is the case. We consumers have the power of the purse and by questioning, can convince nursery owners to supply us with plants not subjected to insecticides. This is another way you can help reverse the tremendous loss of pollinators.
Become a bug activist!
Join a Pollinator Pathway near you: https://www.pollinator-pathway.org/pollinator-pathways-1.
Our bodies, our best choice
In recent weeks, a number of COVID anti-vaccination letters have appeared in HV1. As a response, I would like to share a cogent story, because it’s tragedy underscores a serious health situation in our country:
Phil Valentine, a 61-year-old Nashville-based conservative radio talk show host who had questioned whether it was necessary for all people to get Covid-19 vaccines, died on August 21 of COVID pneumonia, his employer, WWTN Radio, announced on Twitter. On July 26, Phil’s brother released the following statement: “He recognizes now that him not getting the vaccination has probably caused a bunch of other people not to get vaccinated,” he said in an interview. “And that he regrets. This is a real threat, it is a real public health crisis and it is something that if he had to do over again … his cavalier attitude wouldn’t have been what it was and he would have gotten vaccinated and encouraged everybody to get vaccinated.”
Coincidentally, in many southern states with low vaccination rates — COVID hospitalizations and deaths have skyrocketed, causing many overwhelmed medical professionals to leave their jobs. They are suffering from severe overwork and stress, and are frustrated with having to care for critically ill unvaccinated people — when these life-saving shots were widely available to them for free. Meanwhile, the poorest countries in the world are begging for access to these same vaccines — which they know will save them countless lives.
Simultaneously, the danger from the evolution of even more virulent COVID variants increases every time another person is infected with this virus. The only effective way to deal with such a highly contagious disease is to institute strong public health initiatives, by rallying the people and educating them about the need for strong rules and regulations. This is the nature of such epidemics. Without a cohesive response from the public, many millions more will become infected and suffer torturous deaths. There is no way around this dilemma that impinges to some degree on absolute personal freedom. People who shun mask wearing and vaccinations are a viable threat to everyone else they come in contact with — even those who are vaccinated with only partial protection.
When former President Trump meekly encouraged vaccinations at his last rally — he was booed! This is a sad snapshot of the attitudes held by a sizable portion of our population. Our country is “falling apart,” and I place most of the blame for this on the extreme right’s preaching of selfish individualism and anti-social behavior. Living in a healthy society necessitates laws and regulations that can restrict some personal freedoms. People are prohibited from smoking in many public places and driving recklessly on public roads to protect others. These same cohesive concepts also apply to dealing with public health emergencies that pose an imminent threat to everyone!
Peter V. Fiorentino
Consistent zoning for Main Street
Are the Village Board’s proposed zoning changes as monumental as some have suggested?
The Village of New Paltz Board has been considering simplifying our commercial zoning districts. We have had a public hearing open to update the village’s downtown B2 and B1 districts (Main Street and North and South Chestnut) to be more like both the NBR on North Chestnut and the town’s Main Street Mixed Use district that is east of the village along Main Street.
We are also considering changing the zoning for the five houses across the street from the old fire house on Plattekill Avenue so they join the residential zone R2 and be removed from B1. Four properties on South Chestnut that are south of Southside Avenue are also proposed to be changed from R2 to the New B2.
Here are material changes to consider when comparing the districts’ regulations:
Existing B1: 2.5 stories or 30 feet
Existing B2: 3 stories or 35 feet
Proposed New B2: 3 stories or 35 feet and 40 feet for peaked roofs
NBR: 3 stories or 35 feet and 40 feet for peaked roofs
Town’s Main Street Mixed Use: 3 stories or 35 feet
Maximum lot coverage
Existing B1: 60%
Existing B2: 90% (sic)
Proposed New B2: 85%
Town’s Main Street Mixed Use: 85% for redevelopment, 65% for development of undeveloped sites.
It should make many comfortable that renovating an existing building, selling properties and sticking with existing uses, as we have seen in the NBR, does not require property owners to build new multistory buildings. New multistory buildings prescribed for the NBR and proposed New B2 are only required for plans that are completely new.
Additionally, we are working on including language for the New B2 taken from the existing B1 — that’s not in the existing B2 — which includes “No structure shall be demolished nor the exterior of any structure altered for commercial use unless such action is approved by the Planning Board.”
Mayor Tim Rogers
Oars to get to shore
One of the aftereffects of war is moral diarrhea, most often a side effect for those such as the media who have observed war from an emotional distance. Another aftereffect is, emotional constipation which affects those actually engaged on the battlefields or those close to it, such as family members of combatants. These truths they are confronted with take years to digest and often never pass.
The intention of our governmental leadership’s decision-making process has become intentionally complicated for all spending issues but extremely so, when it comes to why we go to war. Complication allows them to hide their true intentions which most often is to make money for the wealthy or get reelected.
Since returning from war, I have been on a personal archeological excavation into my soul. I have located only a few truths in the morass of complications told to me by our government. There is only one message given to every soldier who enlists, “Your only goal is to kill the enemy.” All else told to soldiers is propaganda and lies, designed to hide this primary truth. Complicating why we go to war dilutes the moral imperative “Thou shall not kill,” which the heart of every religion teaches.
The second truth I found is that the war engine lies deep in the complicated bowels of the political machine. Idealism, patriotism and love of country are lures to attract soldiers to enlist and also hide the truth that war is about making cash, moola, bucks, greenbacks and capital. The media assists in complicating this truth instead of educating the public to the fact we go to war to make the wealthy more money. If the media told this truth, their funding would quickly dry up. So they elaborate and spin the politicians’ complicated rhetoric instead of communicating that leadership uses our men and women’s lives as living capital.
I believe 99 percent of a politician’s efforts go into keeping truth and trust buried under their jargon and lies. Common women and men are drowning in a sea of rhetorical bull. We bob in tides of word play, while storms of political fears spin our compass’s needle like a Ferris wheel. High velocity lies destabilize the lifeboats we are floating in. If we were to look down, we’d see the two oars of truth resting in the bottom of the life boat. If we only picked them up, we’d be able to deliver ourselves to the shores of humanity. It’s as simple as, “If it’s not true, we know not to trust it.” Which determines if we vote to go to war or not. Yes, it’s that simple.
My own opinion
My name is Rich Whitney, resident of New Paltz and chair of the Town Environmental Conservation Board. During an August 25 DEC virtual public hearing, I spoke in support of the proposed Danskammer project. I unintentionally implied that the comments I made represented the Environmental Policy Board. My statements represented my own opinion as a Town resident. I wish to emphasize that the comments did not reflect the position of the Town or Village of New Paltz or the Environmental Conservation Board.
Waiting to hear from Rep. Delgado on HR 2590
Over 2300 residents of our 19th Congressional District have signed a petition to Rep. Antonio Delgado, asking him to support H.R. 2590, a bill that requires the US government to hold back military assistance to Israel until Israel stops abusing Palestinian children in the occupied territories.
That abuse has gone on for decades, and affects over 500 children in a typical year — children who are arrested and abused, sometimes snatched from their homes in the middle of the night, usually without access to parents or an attorney, and often held without a court hearing for six months at a time. Such treatment is well documented and amounts to a violation of international treaties that both the US and Israel are sworn to uphold.
A growing number of Congressional members co-sponsor this legislation each year, but not Representative Delgado. He consistently avoids the topic in his emails and never selects our questions to answer in his many town hall events. We have asked for a meeting, but so far none has been offered.
On Saturday, September 4, we will bring our concerns to the Kingston Farmers’ Market at 11 a.m. and walk to Delgado’s nearby office to speak our minds. We have invited him to join the discussion. All are welcome. Let’s see if he shows up.
Classical music robbery
Each year, another flock of wonderful, ambitious college students land in New Paltz, Welcome to you all! I have but one sadness, guys. About at dark, our wonderful WMHT ‘all classical’ radio station, converts to your college station. Radio people call the antennas ‘sticks’ and WMHT only has two sticks. The other is in Schenectady, too far away for most area listeners to receive. Radio SUNY steals WMHT’s second stick in Poughkeepsie: close and loud and clear! We need a better solution than another winter of classic silent nights. Please, sirs, may we have another?
Our local Proud Boys
From the New York Times: “The influential young white supremacist Nick Fuentes — an ally of the Arizona Republican congressman Paul Gosar and the anti-immigrant pundit Michelle Malkin — wrote on the encrypted app Telegram: “The Taliban is a conservative, religious force, the U.S. is godless and liberal. The defeat of the U.S. government in Afghanistan is unequivocally a positive development.” An account linked to the Proud Boys expressed respect for the way the Taliban “took back their national religion as law, and executed dissenters.” The Florida Republican Matt Gaetz may be a clown, but he’s also a congressman who was close to the previous president. On Twitter earlier this month, Gaetz described the Taliban, like Trump, as “more legitimate than the last government in Afghanistan or the current government here.” Fox’s Tucker Carlson, the most important nationalist voice in America, seemed to sympathize with the gender politics of Taliban-supporting Afghans. “They don’t hate their own masculinity,” he said shortly after the fall of Kabul. “They don’t think it’s toxic. They like the patriarchy. Some of their women like it too. So now they’re getting it all back. So maybe it’s possible that we failed in Afghanistan because the entire neoliberal program is grotesque.””
It seems to me that we have our own local Fox News HV Proud Boys: George Civile, John Habersberger, Joseph Jauer….whose dislike/disapproval of our current Administration, particularly President Biden, is intense! Despite the remarkable legislative victories that the Biden administration has achieved (have you fellers gotten any checks courtesy of Joe Biden?), they can find nothing good in his accomplishments — despite Republican obstructionism — but only look to blame things on him, even the mess in Afghanistan which had been set up by their hero, Donald Trump, who made a deal with the Taliban! Are they equally enamored of “QAnon and the civil war-hungry Boogaloo Bois, a movement that can seem absurd and still be a source of real radicalization.” I wonder how far their right-wing politics and opinions can go?
Last week’s HV1 had an article about a man who put up a huge sign saying “F**k Biden, F**k Harris and F**k you, too.” Perhaps our local HV Proud Boys can save their time for better use and just write these seven words each week, for that is pretty much the gist of their diatribes.
When will we learn?
The report of the UN International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has confirmed that, even if we were to stop emitting greenhouse gases today, the amount of CO2 in the air today will continue to warm the planet for the next 30 years. Even our aggressive New York Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA) does not call for New York to be climate neutral until 2040. That means that, even if we cut down on greenhouse gas emissions over the next 20 years, CO2 will accumulate, extending the time it takes to leave our atmosphere. Everything we do to cut emissions ASAP is of vital importance.
Why, then, is New York considering investing in a new Danskammer power plant that would be fueled by the burning of fossil fuels? Why are we thinking of replacing the existing plant with one that will increase greenhouse gas emissions, not to mention other air pollutants, 40%?
Why is this even an option? When will we learn?
If this concerns you, please consider taking a simple action. The proposal for the new Danskammer plant is before the NYS DEC Office of Hearings and Mediation Services They are taking comments until September 13. You can submit a written comment very easily at stoptheplant.org/take-action. You can use the script they give you or you can write your own. In two minutes you can make a difference.