EDITORIAL: Can we talk?

THE DUST HASN’T SETTLED. Instead it swirls faster. What’s troubling so many of us now shows no signs of improvement. What chance do we have that things will get better when the situation seems so dire?

Good question. Should we accept this anxiety as inevitable? Dismiss calls for reconnection with a shrug and a sigh. The problems are too big. The gulf between us and our neighbors too wide. They’re still wrong; we’re still right. There’s no reason to bridge the gap between us. And why would we want to?

Start with that last question: Why try? One answer is that no matter whose side we’re on, we share a desire to to survive. And there’s more to survival than food and water, clothing, a job and a place to live. We’re social creatures and wherever we live, we tend to connect with each other through groups, even when a pandemic stalks us all. Read more…

EDITORIAL: There’s no fraud

IF WE’RE GOING TO BE CALLED “the enemy of the people” for another four years, I’d prefer that the person making that remark was a legitimately elected president.

What we do know right now is that we don’t know who the next president will be, no matter what the current president says.

What we also know that we have county elections officials who are doing a good job at making sure our votes get counted and the public knows the results. The unofficial results were available not long after the polls closed, which is how it should be in our digital age. The numbers have to be unofficial because absentee ballots have not yet been counted.

The next steps include “reconciliation” of ballots. What election officials do is to make sure nobody ends up voting twice. What? Fraud? Rigged Election? No! Anyone eligible to vote in New York state can send in an absentee ballot and then change his or her mind and vote in person. The county elections board staff checks all absentee ballots to be sure there is not also a voting machine ballot from the same person. If there is, the absentee ballot is discarded. That takes time. Read more…

EDITORIAL: Barrett for Assembly

DIDI BARRETT HAS REPRESENTED THE 106TH DISTRICT in the state Assembly for eight years. She is running on the Democratic, Working Families and Independence ballot lines. Her opponent is Dean Michael, who appears on the Republican, Conservative and Libertarian lines.

The district includes: the City of Hudson; the Columbia County towns of Ancram, Claverack, Clermont, Copake, Gallatin, Germantown, Ghent, Greenport, Livingston, Taghkanic; and parts of Northern Dutchess County.

One place to start in describing the impact Ms. Barrett has had on Columbia County is with her committee assignments in the Assembly: Agriculture; Environmental Conservation; Mental Health; Veterans’ Affairs; and Tourism, Parks, Arts and Sports Development. She is the county’s go-to person and our indispensable ally in Albany. Read more…

EDITORIAL: Delgado for Congress

WHEN REPRESENTATIVE ANTONIO DELGADO describes the 19th District as the “eighth most rural congressional district in the U.S., he’s not kidding. The district may cover all or parts of 11 counties, including all of Columbia, but you don’t have to spend much time here to appreciate the margin by which trees outnumber voters.

He’s seen a lot of them—trees and voters—in his first term, even though almost half of that term, which began in January 2019, has been overshadowed by the pandemic. He’s now running for a second term against three opponents. He has a record that speaks of the type of congressman he’s been and what he’s likely to accomplish if reelected.

Mr. Delgado is a Democrat who will also appear on the Working Families and Serve America Movement ballot lines. He faces Republican Kyle Van De Water, Green Party candidate Steven Greenfield and Libertarian Party candidate Victoria N. Alexander. Recently there was a broadcast debate between Rep. Delgado and Mr. Van De Water; the other two candidates were not present. Read more…

EDITORIAL: Elect Joe Biden

THIS WILL BE SHORT. It takes no special powers of imagination, time or education to know which candidate is a better person. That alone is not enough to make Joe Biden a good president. But it’s a good place to start.

His upbringing gave him the ability to know what it means when so many people in this country tell us they’re hurting—not inconvenienced, worried or annoyed—hungry, cold, scared. Don’t take Joe Biden’s word for it. Come to the County Fairgrounds in Chatham the next time there’s a free food distribution. Pitch in and help. See for yourself.

If we don’t want hunger to be the new normal, who has a better plan for helping the people like those who had jobs until the pandemic hit? That would be Joe Biden. Read more…