GOP’s antiquated policies would deny women their due

Thursday, October 25, 2012
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GOP’s antiquated policies would deny women their due

A cautionary tale of two parties and their agendas for women:

One party supports the Equal Pay Act, which makes it illegal to pay women less than men for the same work. One party has appointed two women to the Supreme Court, not two more men. One party has been an advocate for the reproductive rights of women and has fought for full insurance coverage of birth control products without co-pays, along with free mammograms for all women.

One party has fiercely defended funding for Planned Parenthood to provide the educational and preventive health care so many women depend on (no, there is no federal funding used for abortions). One party, through the Affordable Health Care Act has expanded health care access for millions of American women and children. One party has protected the right of all women to make decisions about their own bodies.

The other? No mention of equal rights for women in the 2012 platform. A promise to appoint judges to the Supreme Court not on the basis of intelligence and integrity, but purely on the basis of whether or not the appointee would vote to overturn Roe v. Wade.

No funding for family planning, no insurance coverage for birth control so women can plan responsibly when to have a family. Full support for a constitutional amendment that would criminalize abortion, even in cases of rape or incest, even when a child is the victim, even when the mother’s life is in danger.

When a fetus is considered a full person from the moment of conception, what is the relative value of the mother’s life? How ironic that the party that constantly preaches that government should stay out of our lives is the party that wants government to dictate every intimate aspect of women’s reproductive lives.

The GOP is indeed “Government of the Past.” I will vote for a government of the future, one which recognizes and supports the right of all women to make safe and informed choices about our own bodies.

Marjorie Karowe


Local Kateri canonization ritual rivaled Vatican’s

Re Oct. 21 article, “What does a saint look like?”: I rejoice in the new saint, Kateri Tekakwitha.

In Rotterdam Junction, I attended St. Margaret of Cortona’s joyfully ritualized ceremonial canonization celebration. Mohawk Indians in ceremonial wardrobes with drums and offerings dazzled the congregation’s prayers. Symbolic offerings of cedar (purification); sage (“Earth’s gift”), sweet grass (blessing of the mother) and tobacco (offering of the creator) were placed near the altar. Exotic Casa Blanca lilies were carried in procession. A native American courting flute sweetened the atmosphere.

The saint died 300 years ago. Kateri’s miracle, curing the flesh-eating-diseased boy, melts the heart.

St. Margaret of Cortona’s celebration rivaled the Vatican’s festivities.

The church’s specially commissioned Tekakwitha statue looks life-like and most comforting.

Rob Curtiss


No cause for cops to invade home, shoot dog

The Oct. 9 breaking into of Israel Torres’s house in Schenectady [Oct. 10 Gazette] and the murder of his dog is a major crime by the Schenectady Police Department and its drug task force.

Imagine if you had your door bashed down and over a dozen black-clad, armed shock troopers barged into your house and pointed weapons at you and your family. What do you think any dog’s, or human’s, reaction would be?

And just what is the claimed justification by the Schenectady police who carried out this vile criminal action? They claimed that Israel Torres was selling processed plants, perhaps in the form of coca, marijuana or poppy. And for this the police, district attorney, judges and state say he must be caged for years and his dog murdered.

Since this is the kind of thing that the city, police and New York state do on a regular basis, then you can count me out as being a supporter of anything they do.

Christian Rivera


Skip sales pitch, stick with commissioners

An Oct. 19 letter [“Time to part with Spa City’s rusty antique”] compares the current commission form of city government in our flourishing, award-winning city to a rusty old Studebaker, and urges voters to trade it in for a new car.

The metaphor helps us understand what is going on with many of the proponents of charter change. These are car salesmen trying to sell us something. Trouble is, it’s many of the same folks who were trying to sell us a completely different vehicle for completely different reasons six years ago and telling us it was by far the best buy on the market. We said “no thanks” then and should say “no thanks” now.

The commission and city manager forms of government both date back to the early 20th century. I’m not persuaded that Saratoga Springs needs to change to copy the many struggling cities around the country that employ unelected city managers.

I’m more impressed that another progressive, flourishing city (Portland, Ore.) retains its commission form of government. And that entrepreneurs in our “smart city,” like Elliott Masie of the Masie Center, are publicly urging a “no” vote.

I concur with Elliott’s message: Don’t mess with success! Click on Vote “no” on the charter change referendum.

Kenneth Klotz

Saratoga Springs

The writer is the former mayor.

Princetown warned of Van Woeart years ago

Re Oct. 16 article, “Judge fired as court clerk; lawyer eyes lawsuit”: I served as Princetown’s youngest town supervisor ever elected [1990-92]. Town minutes show that besides opposing self-serving members whose only concern was to stick everyone else in town for the private roads they bought houses on, I also created controversy by not reappointing Michelle Van Woeart as court clerk.

Wake up, Princetown. She boo-hooed then, also thinking she was entitled to the [appointment] for life. Some members of the Town Board at the time caved, and now you have a town justice who has been censured by the state Commission on Judicial Conduct and thinks she’s entitled to compensation for two jobs.

She should reimburse the town for one job and all the legal costs she has made the town accrue.

She needs to be out of the judge’s chambers and out of Town Hall ASAP; and any members of the board who are trying to make it easy for her should be shown the door also.

Only those who are not there to selfishly serve themselves really represent the town. Clean house.

Jeb S. Fuller

Falls Church, Va.

Election letters

The deadline for election letters is 5 p.m. on Oct. 31. We will continue to run selected letters on local races through Saturday, Nov. 3 in the print edition. More election-related letters will appear in the online edition.

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October 25, 2012
6 a.m.
patricca says...

Marjorie - you are being manipulated - http://votingwithmyfeettoflorida.blogspo... - check it out.

October 25, 2012
7:23 a.m.
Will1960 says...

Christian Rivera,

You are spot on with your take on another drug raid where the police automatically shoot the dog and traumatize children that happen to be present in the house. One detail Mr. Rivera overlooked in his thoughtful letter is that these drug sweeps only occur in the poorer sections of Schenectady, while Niskayuna, Rotterdam and Scotia are completely exempted from these dangerous, intrusive and stupid raids. I don't blame the police they are just doing what they are told to do.

The real blame lies with the Daily Gazette who have failed year after year to do any sort of analysis or question the police cheif why these raids only occur in poor neighborhoods. I geuss that's due to the fact that there is no drug use or activity in the affluent areas. I don't know why this newspaper has failed to do their job, but the Gazette isn't the only one and the TV media are afraid to investigate why only poor neighborhoods have their doors kicked in, pets shot dead and our citizens are painted as the bad guy as for the greater good and public safety.

Where's Carl Strock now that he's desparately needed?

October 25, 2012
7:32 a.m.
cfield says...

Well written articles, you are right on the mark. But you fail to mention
"School Taxes" . which in fact is a separate tax from property taxes.

October 25, 2012
7:40 a.m.
wmarincic says...

will1960 because that is where the major drug activity is. Have you ever lived in one of those neighbiorhoods? The drug house has constant people in and out, drug addicts with no money screaming and crying outside, prostitutes having sex in cars in the neighborhood to get the drug money,fighting in the streets. I owned a home in Vale neighborhood fo years, I saw it daily.
People can't let their children out to play because they are afraid. I had two gunfights in front of my housde between two drug houses 3 doors away from each other. My wife was on the floor as 2 bullets hit the house that we had lived in for over 15 years.
You worry about kids being traumatized by the police? What about the children being traumatized by drug dealing parents? Do you want to know the best way not to get your dog shot during a police raid? Don't sell drugs. BTW, Van Vranken Ave. is not a bad section of town, most of the area is middle class, other than Yates Village.

October 25, 2012
10:36 a.m.
marksgrill says...

Jeb Fuller, I believe you have little clout to start throwing stones at a justice that has been elected for the last 15 years in the Town of Princetown where your campaign only lasted two years on the Town Board. Being that you are completely unfamiliar with the town of Princetown politics as you reside in VA, you have no idea the self-serving tendencies of the current town board members. From working their non-Princetown jobs while on the Princetown time clock, to appointing and giving raises to favorites among the appointed employees.

I can't understand why you consider Justice VanWoeart as "self-serving" as she has performed administrative duties while holding the Justice role under the approval of the Board for years. She is compensated for both roles, yes; maybe you are not aware that Princetown is one of the busiest Justice Courts in NYS thus unlike her counterparts in the Town Board role, she is performing necessary duties specific to the Princetown Town Court while taking part-time office hours.

Also the censorship to the Commission of Judicial Conduct was submitted following improper citation by the former animal control officer to the Justices son's. Although she expedited the transfer of the citations to a different court following improper citation by the animal control officer, the censorship determined that Justice VanWoeart should have transferred the case even faster.

If you want to mention the Commission of Judicial Conduct you should have referenced the fact the Commission dismissed the issue that Judge Vanwoeart is providing administrative/clerical assistance in her court since 1997, based on a formal opinion from the Commission on Judicial Ethics which allows her to perform both these duties. The Attorney General provided the informal opinion that a Judge can be their own Court Clerk. An unofficial opinion from the Attorney General that has been circulating states it unacceptable for two justices to perform as each other’s court clerks, which is not applicable here.

Get your stories straight and all the information before you submit your comments, Norm, I mean Jeb.


October 25, 2012
10:52 a.m.
albright1 says...

Patricca, very well written blog.

By the way, Marjorie is not being manipulated. She is a lawyer and she is doing the manipulation. She should be ashamed of herself for the disgusting lies she is propagating.

October 25, 2012
10:59 a.m.
albright1 says...

and the Schenectady Gazette should be ashamed of themselves for printing Marjorie Karowe's letter. You know who Marjorie is and you know full well that this letter was full of lies.

October 25, 2012
11:39 a.m.
wmarincic says...

Marjorie Karowe,

Stop carrying the socialist water of the Obama campaign. Contraception and birth control is NOT a medical issue nor is abortion. If you actually think that Planned Parenthood funds do not pay for abortions you are crazy. And if you look at democrat controlled states you will see that they are really the party that want's to control the lives of others. My grandfather was a lifelong democrat who would be appaled at where the party has come. It is now the party of anything goes, the party of supporting lazyness and the party of babykilling.

October 25, 2012
12:28 p.m.
SnowGrinch says...

Marjorie Karowe,
The Republican party has not always been this bigoted and backward on the topic of birth control and abortion.
Leading Republicans supported Planned Parenthood and promoted it's agenda of health services for women.
* President Richard Nixon was so enthusiastic about a federal family planning initiative for low-income women that he declared it a "national goal" in 1969. * President George H.W. Bush earned the nickname "Rubbers" as a congressman for his passion for family planning.
* NY Gov. George Pataki required companies to cover birth control in their health insurance plans.
* Barry Goldwater was a founding member of Planned Parenthood of Arizona.
* Even Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, as recently as 2002, attended Planned Parenthood fundraisers and sought the organization's endorsement.
We don't need to accept the present crop of "anti-choice" Republicans who have turned their back on the issue of Choice and Family Planning.

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