Onteora board members should resign over mascot
Dear Editor: The Onteora school board has been lying about the Indian mascot issue. I did some research and found several problems with the blindside vote that was taken to do away with this icon.
This vote was done at a workshop meeting where voting on issues does not take place. Voting is saved for the regular monthly board meeting, when the public would attend.
The board said Native Americans were offended by our mascot. Not true. First, not one Indian ever attended a board meeting prior to the vote. The letters that were received by the school board were solicited by a board member, not sent because of any protest by any Indian group. The letter that was sent by the Seneca Indians said, “The Seneca Nation does hereby oppose the use of racist and demeaning Indian sports mascot.” The Onteora Indian mascot did not even come close to meeting these conditions. I guess the school board failed to read this letter.
The other Indian nation contacted by the school board in Wisconsin did not even know where our school district is, and their policy on mascots is the same as the Seneca. I also was given, by a board member, a list of Indian groups that were “offended.” Same situation as the other Indian nations. So, as you can see, the Indians had nothing to do with the board’s decision to take away our mascot.
It sure was not driven by the majority of the district residents. At the meeting after the vote, the majority of speakers was in favor of keeping the Indian mascot. The majority of the students did not what to lose their mascot, so this was not student-driven.
This leaves us with the only reason this was done. This move was someone’s personal agenda. Why someone thinks they have the right to impose their personal agenda on others is way out of line and conduct not becoming a school board member.
I ask the four board members who voted for this disgraceful act to resign. They have violated the public trust and their oath of office.
Doug Eighmey, West Hurley
Fight the pipelines
Dear Editor: Pilgrim Pipeline Holdings, LLC, wants to build two pipelines from Albany to Linden, N.J., using the New York Thruway right of way. These pipelines would run through 31 communities, including all the towns in our area that are in the Thruway’s path.
Besides the impact it will have on traffic when they begin construction, this pipeline will cross may waterways, some of which supply drinking water to nearby communities. The products probably will be shipped wherever the price is right, so we may not even get any financial benefit. Crude oil will be shipped here from North Dakota. This is the highly volatile oil that you hear about, the stuff that makes train cars explode. Do we want that same oil under the ground near our homes, our children’s schools, our hospitals?
There are a lot of things we can do, like call or write the governor and state and federal representatives and say we don’t want it.
Amy Kletter, New Paltz