Letters to the Editor - April 5, 2012
Don’t blame Town Board
In addressing Les Funk III’s letter to the editor of March 29, I can assure him that my only “agenda” is to protect the interests of the Pine Plains community. I sympathize with his frustration concerning the closed Carvel golf course, but it has nothing to do with any Town Board decisions. The Town Board has not voted on the Durst/Carvel project since there was no NND application to consider until three months ago. That aside, it is my understanding the Durst’s proposed golf course will be private.
I’m most concerned that Mr. Funk somehow assumes that board members have already made up their minds concerning the proposed NND. Brian Coons, George Keeler, Rosey Lyons-Chase, Jim Jackson and I are not ready to either rubber stamp this project or reject it out of hand. I believe each of us realizes that the issues are very complex and that a vote on the proposed NND will require a good, hard look on how it might hurt or benefit Pine Plains.
Basically, what it comes down to is comparing a conservation subdivision, which the Dursts have a right to do without Town Board approval, building about 350 to 425 new homes (numbers contingent on bonuses, etc.), with what an NND zone would allow, building approximately 150 to 200 extra homes (a total of 591 proposed). I encourage citizens to weigh all aspects of the benefits and costs of both scenarios (conservation subdivision vs. NND) and then let your Town Board know what you think.
Each individual Town Board member takes this task seriously and wants what is best for Pine Plains. It is what that “best” is for the majority that is at issue.
Pine Plains Town Board
Mutual aid helped stop fire near Camp Sloane
On behalf of the board of directors, the staff and campers of Camp Sloane YMCA, I would like to thank the courageous volunteers from three states and 13 municipalities including: Lake-ville, Sharon, North Canaan, Falls Village, Kent, Norfolk, Cornwall, Egremont, Sheffield, Amenia, Millerton, Northeast Fire District, Wassaic and the Dutchess County Task Force for putting out the fire which occurred on March 20.
I should also mention that thanks are in order to the many towns which sent trucks and teams to cover the towns which were busy with the fire here in Lakeville. I understand that, in total, more than 20 fire companies and ambulance services were involved.
While the fire damaged several acres on our camp’s southwestern border, it could have been much worse. The fire came dangerously close to burning our ropes course as well as some of our program structures.
It was the fire crews’ quick and professional response which kept the fire from creating a catastrophic level of damage to our facility just as we prepare for summer camp. I would like to single out our neighbor and captain of Lakeville Hose Company, Jason Wilson, for his cool and calm handling of the emergency. His high level of knowledge of our property, trail system and facilities was surely integral to getting the fire under control.
We, here at Sloane, all feel very fortunate to live, work and recreate in a town where neighbors like these are ready willing and able to come to the rescue. Again, we wish to extend our heartfelt thanks for a job well done.
Paul “Bear” Bryant,
Camp Sloane YMCA
Appreciated TLC from Millerton’s post office
To the Millerton post office, the greatest post office team. All of you are so extra special. Through the years I’ve watched each of you handle various customers and situations. Whatever the circumstances you’ve always remained calm, courteous and professional, even when I’m sure those were not your inner feelings.
Personally, I’ve not been at my best at times and surely tested your patience, but you never failed to be helpful or treat me kindly. For all the tender care received, you have my ongoing appreciation.
‘The Hunger Games’ not for all audiences
The review of the film “The Hunger Games” by Jenny Hansell in last week’s Millerton News was disturbing.
It endorsed this film, with scenes of children and teenagers fighting to the death as human sacrifices in gladiator games, as appropriate for preteens. Ms. Hansell also judged a contest in which 11- and 12-year-olds dressed as characters in the film, including those who portrayed fighters in the death games. The event was covered in a separate article titled with the film’s cynical slogan, “May the odds be ever in your favor.” How can the odds ever be in your favor if 24 contestants enter combat and only one comes out alive?
Ms. Hansell stated that her children equate the film’s violence to a Grimm’s fairy tale or the every day traumas of middle school. Perhaps so. Kids can find answers to everything instantly and see graphic violence with the click of a mouse. They crave a life’s unknowns, mysteries and miracles, a life that provides challenge and an opportunity to prevail over difficulties. The media exploits this need.
Young film-goers quoted were obviously smart and well-spoken, but they are still children. Behind their facade of poise they seek direction and guidance. If only they knew that this world really is more mysterious, magical and fantastic than they could imagine. If only they had better leadership from us.
I saw “The Hunger Games” over the weekend. It is a bleak depiction of the world we are rushing toward under U.N. Agenda 21. The United States has already been divided into 10 regions; we New Yorkers live in Region 2. The unpopulated wildlands that main character Katniss travels through by high-speed train resemble off-limits, protected conservation zones/U.N. biospheres. People are punished for perceived excess food consumption by having an increased chance of their children being taken to fight in the gladiator games (hence “The Hunger Games”). This is population control through starvation.
Under Agenda 21 we are facing loss of United States sovereignty along with our rights and freedoms, rule by pampered elite, as in the film and global government, with iron-fisted control over the individual and his or her use of resources, facilitated by total surveillance and monitoring. We are one more elite created disaster, whether environmental, financial or war-driven, away from the kind of world depicted in “The Hunger Games.” Ms. Hansell describes this world as a moral universe. Hellish nightmare in more apt.
The fact that so many truly good people cannot conceive that others can be evil leaves them open to the deceit and manipulation of those who would do them harm. The troubles of the world are not due to incompetence and certainly not to human nature, which is on the whole, good. Evil exists. It sits in high places and gives our children a horrific vision of their future. Let’s help them learn to identify and fight it, and to be the heroes, like the brave and beautiful Katniss Everdeen, they long to be.
The Millerton Fire Company thanks all who joined us for breakfast on Sunday, April 1. We served 253 meals.
A special thanks to all who came to help. Without you it can’t happen.
This was the last breakfast of the season. The Millerton Fire Company thanks everyone for supporting our breakfasts this past season. We appreciate it and hope to see you all again.
Community came together
I want to thank the community for coming together on March 24, at the Wassaic Park. Not only was the baseball field fixed but garbage was picked up and weeds pulled by the playgrounds.
The baseball field was put together with the help of Joel Pelkey and Shawn Howard and members of the Adult Softball League. Ryan Killmer (president of Amenia Softball League); Shawn Howard (Amenia Fire Company); George Langiu (Jack’s Auto/Lantern Inn); John Wheeler (John’s Fencing/Paginelli Construction); Chris Whitehead (C.W. Carpentry); and Dough Pelkey (Delango Auto). Big thanks to D.J. Reilly (Reilly Construction), who brought his tractor; Richard Wheeler; Bill Flood; Dave Reagon; Holly Kristoferson; Victoria Perotti; Vicky Doyle; Mike and Patti Baker; Mr. Thrasher; Marty Grossman; Jimmy Ruiz; Paul Reed; and Frankie O’Connell.
I am very proud of all the students that showed up to help: John Wheeler IV (Pine Plains); Jazminn Reed (Saugerties High School); Erica Doyle (Millbrook High School); Tyler Baker (Millbrook Elementary School); Kourtney and Rhianna Reed (Torrington Elementary School); and the following are all Webutuck students: Thomas and Harrison Ford; Nick, David and Victoria Gilleo; Steven, Chris, Jay and Timmy Reed; Nick Reilly; Andrew and Leshawn Thrasher; Sara, Nikki and Mikey Baker; Tyler Howard.
Thanks to Rally Farms for the donation of hay; Cousins Mini Market for the cookies; and Bill Flood for the pizza and soda.
How about a little pride?
April is Keep America Beautiful Month. In honor of this celebration, I urge your readers to properly dispose of their trash, whether they are outdoors, at home, at school or at work. Thoughtlessly discarded litter soils the environment and poses a lethal danger to wild animals. Small mammals, birds and reptiles can get their heads stuck in cans, jars and yogurt containers. Animals often become entangled and trapped in uncut six-pack rings.
The SPCA Wildlife Care Center in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., reports that 14,000 injured animals are admitted annually to its facility, including many raccoons who are found trapped in cans. Most of these raccoons must be euthanized because of their injuries. With 250 million tons of trash produced in the U.S. in 2010 alone, wild animals face many hazards from carelessly discarded litter. We can all make an enormous difference by slitting yogurt containers, cutting up plastic six-pack rings and crushing cans before throwing them away.
Exhibit was lots of fun, b’gosh
On March 18 I attended “The Irish in Amenia” at the Immaculate Conception Church presented by the Amenia Historical Society and found it a very impressive display. Those involved certainly deserve credit for a fantastic job well done.
With a project this size there is always, innocently, something overlooked. I recall one fine elementary teacher, Mrs. Gertrude Foley, I had in the 1930s. She and Mr. Foley had four sons who were the same age as me and my three brothers. Three of her sons served in the armed services during World War II. Captain Donald Foley was a member of a B-17 bomber crew flying numerous missions from a base in England. All were faithful members of the Immaculate Conception Church and an Irish family that certainly deserves recognition for its contribution to the Amenia vicinity.
Harry J. Jenkins Jr.