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Letters to the Editor for Thursday, July 30

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Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion

Trump shows no regard for others

I have never been so disgusted with the behavior of an American president as I have been with Trump.
When he said that 99 out of 100 COVID-19 cases are harmless, I couldn’t believe what I was hearing.
This guy belongs in a mental hospital. He has no regard for anyone but himself. If there is any justice in this world, I know who deserves to be infected.
Thomas Singer
Delanson

‘Contempt of cop’ infects U.S. policing

There is a little known phenomenon in the world of policing called contempt of cop, which, as a former U.S. Border Patrol agent, I believe is a root cause of police murders.
In training, police officers are taught to develop their “officer presence,” which is a projection of their authority that persuades the public to comply with their commands.
Good officer presence projects strength; poor officer presence projects weakness. In other words, cops expect suspects to obey their directions, and when they do not, contempt of cop has been committed.
When contempt of cop is committed, a void occurs between telling someone to do something and forcing someone to do something. It can mean the difference between life and death.
George Floyd was murdered because he encountered an officer, Matt Chauvin, who did not know how to properly project strength in the face of contempt.
George Floyd told the arresting officers that he couldn’t sit in the back seat of their patrol vehicle because he had claustrophobia.
In Derek Chauvin’s mind, this act of disobedience flew in the face of his authority and needed to be met with a show of force.
There was no in-between for Chauvin, as there isn’t for many officers, it was force alone. And just like that, a man lost his life.
It is senseless, it is tragic, and it infects American policing. We deserve better.
Lora Como
Ballston Lake

Welch strategy at root of GE’s failures

Jeff Immelt, GE’s CEO (2001-17) is mainly blamed for GE’s destruction in the Lights Out article (“Book chronicles GE’s long decline”) in the July 26 Daily Gazette.
Jack Welch, GE’s 1981-2001 CEO, was irrationally obsessed with increasing earnings every quarter during his 20 years as CEO. He did it at a heavy cost that led to GE’s destruction.
Welch also turned GE into a financial services company at the expense of manufacturing. To pay for his disastrous financial services and insurance businesses acquisitions, manufacturing was hollowed out of knowledgeable engineers and scientists.
The valuable product department labs working on the next generation of turbine generators and other technologies were closed.
Welch’s destruction of GE’s engineering know-how left Immelt with an irreparably damaged GE.
Welch also left Immelt with a $9.4 billion bill for insurance reserve deficit that Welch used for the false claim that he was increasing earnings every quarter. Too much manufacturing and engineering know-how had been lost by the time Immelt tried to restore manufacturing.
Immelt made many mistakes, including overpaying for Alstom and investing in oil and gas. But the root cause for GE’s failure was Welch’s strategy to transform GE to a financial services company at the expense of manufacturing leadership and know-how.
Mark Markovitz
Niskayuna

Find ways to fully reopen our libraries

What do supermarkets, wine stores and libraries have in common? They all have customers who like to handle the merchandise before committing to choice.
However, our libraries seem to be out of commission. Oh, yes, if you are clever enough to have researched a tome and requested that it be held for your pick up later when masked, that might be OK.
Supermarkets and wine stores use social distancing, plastic barriers, and they require face masks.
Check-out counters at the grocery store are wiped down after every customer. Credit card machines are given the same treatment.
Why are our libraries not doing the same?
Is it because the merchandise is handled? Require gloves of every patron looking for an interesting read and reopen the libraries. Or, perhaps there is another reason why reading is no longer promoted.
Allen R. Remaley
Saratoga Springs

Stop inflammatory coverage of police

Instead of the July 8 Gazette front page headline (“Video reveals cop punching suspect”) wouldn’t “Video reveals suspect resisting arrest” have been equally accurate yet less inflammatory?
In your paper’s coverage of police interactions with the public, one sided reporting has no place.
Who knows, it might even make matters worse.
How did your reporting that the “backyard, which was still festooned with red, white and blue (sic) ribbons from the Fourth of July” add anything to your account?
John Hoetker
Schenectady
The writer is a retired Schenectady Police Department sergeant.

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