Letters to the Editor 4-9-21


Regarding Assemblyman Colin Schmitt’s Bid for Congress

Letter to Editor,

“Assemblyman Colin Schmitt is bad for the Hudson Valley and bad for New York’s 18th Congressional District. On January 6, Schmitt cheered on busloads of people driving down to Washington, D.C. to participate in a violent riot incited by former President Trump’s Big Lie that the election was stolen – a lie which Schmitt has still not denounced.

“This riot was backed by White Supremacists, where dozens of heroic police officers were attacked, and an officer was killed. This anti-law enforcement violence is un-American. Schmitt needs to immediately release the video of his speech to the rioters and answer for his actions. New Yorkers deserve to know the truth.

“While Schmitt was cheering on insurrectionists, Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney was getting results for the Hudson Valley, working closely with local Republican elected officials to deliver the federal resources they need to crush this virus. Congressman Maloney helped pass three major stimulus bills, including the American Rescue Plan, which has broad bipartisan support among the American public and delivers over $40 billion to New York to put shots in arms, money in pockets, kids in school, and people back in their jobs. 

“Meanwhile Colin Schmitt has failed his constituents, voting to cut over $400 million from New York hospitals and against eviction protections, child care, and paid family leave in the middle of the pandemic. His actions helped incite an insurrection against the United States Government, endangering the lives of police officers and elected officials. We can’t allow a Trump crony and insurrectionist to represent this seat in Congress.”

Brett Broge, Chair
Orange County Democratic Committee


In Favor Of Legalizing Marijuana, But!

To the Editor,

I applaud the recent legalization of recreational cannabis by New York State. Nobody should be locked in a cage because of a plant, and it’s not the government’s job to regulate what we can and cannot put into our bodies. Cannabis is non-addictive, and it is impossible to overdose on the drug. Nobody has ever died from cannabis use alone, contrary to the thousands who die of alcohol poisoning each year. Drug addicts use cannabis to wean themselves off of more dangerous drugs and become productive members of society. Soldiers use it in place of addictive medications to help cope with PTSD and severe injuries. The legalization of cannabis will help put an end to the arrests and incarcerations of thousands of people, most of whom are people of color, for committing a crime for which there is no victim.  

However, the new law is far from perfect. There is a waiting period of 18 to 24 months while the state sets up the bureaucracy that will accompany the legalization. This delay is unreasonable; businesses should be able to sell recreational cannabis in all its forms immediately and without licensure. The state is also imposing heavy taxes on cannabis sales, which will drive people to continue obtaining cannabis from the black market. Cannabis should be regulated like onions – no bureaucracy, no waiting period, no high taxes – just let the free market work! 

Furthermore, individuals are limited to three mature and three immature plants. This is illogical. It’s just a plant; people should be allowed to have as many plants as they want at all levels of maturity. Their home, their body, their choice.

I urge lawmakers to amend the law to erase the heavy taxes and regulations and let recreational cannabis sales commence immediately.

Pietro S. Geraci

Chair, Orange County New York Libertarian Party