Letters to the Editor

Avoiding the sad truth

To the editor:

For the last few weeks, changing gun laws has been the main topic on every news channel and newspaper. I do agree changes need to be made, but I feel I need to say "Before I Burst." The changes that are being made "aren't enough." Limiting the amount of gun magazines and the amount of ammunition a gun owner can purchase, and doing a more intensive background check, is not enough and is certainly not the solution. I truly believe that people with a license to own a gun certainly have the right to protect their home and people who have a hunting license have the right to hunt. But, I feel, it's not only the right thing to do. It should be made into a law, to keep these guns locked up, and the key should stay on your person at all times. It is ridiculous to me that so many gun owners are leaving their guns in a dresser drawer, an unlocked cabinet, or in clear view for anyone to see or take. I feel a law should be passed that when you purchase a gun license, you must sign an agreement that you will keep your gun locked up and the key with you at all times. With the exception of someone breaking into your home, and breaking the lock off your gun cabinet, you should be held responsible if a family member, friend or neighbor, while in your home, is able to take your gun and use it to hurt or kill another person. After all, it seems lately that if it is not the gun owners who are committing these horrible murders, it's been people living in or visiting the gun owner's home. I'm certainly not trying to suggest that keeping your guns under lock and key will put an end to all these horrible crimes; but I'm certain locking them up will prevent some. Those sweet children in Connecticut were all killed by a gun owner's family member. And my precious grandson, Jonathan DeJesus, along with his best friend, Paul, were also killed by a gun that was not owned by the shooter. I often wonder why the shooter was able to get his hands on the gun. The death of my grandson has ended the life I knew and loved. My family and I are in constant pain without him in our lives. We never thought this could ever happen to us. The sad truth is this could happen to anyone if things remain the same. So please keep your guns locked up. I would love to hear what the readers of the Recorder think about my opinion.

Jonathan's grandma,

Deborah Tiano,

Gloversville

We must adapt to change

To the editor:

On Dec. 6 the Fulton-Montgomery Region CEO Roundtable sponsored a city revitalization symposium. We had a great turnout of local business leaders, elected officials, interested citizens and media. The mayor of Auburn spoke about the steps that community has taken to revitalize their city. They have made impressive progress. We also heard from area developers who are working in neighboring communities. These developers were very encouraging about the potential in our community.

The outcome of the symposium was very positive and many agreed that the next steps for our communities are to work regionally in our two counties with all municipalities in mind. Collaboration and cooperation will raise the economic prosperity of the entire region.

As president of Alpin Haus with two locations in Montgomery County, I see our area as a region. Our employees and customers come from both counties and the greater region as a whole. We have been in business for 49 years and know that to be successful you must continually adapt to change. Our communities must do the same so that we can grow. Growth is necessary, both in population and in business development. We need growth for our area in order to increase our property and sales tax base.

Activity breeds activity and leads to momentum. We have had a lot of success stories in our communities over the past few years. Growth in any of our cities, towns or villages is good for the whole area. I encourage all of us who live in this region to work together, be positive and get involved.

Andy Heck,

Amsterdam

Putting the plans on hold

To the editor:

The dangerous method of natural gas drilling called hydrofracking threatens our environment and our health as increasing scientific evidence clearly demonstrates. But it also possesses a tremendous threat to the economic future of the entire state. The catastrophic effect of fracking on our water supply has been widely documented. Should this technology be allowed in New York state, not only will home values drop, rural New York will lose much of its appeal to tourists and potential future residents. My wife grew up in Sharon Springs and we still come to visit friends and family in the region on a regular basis. Upstate New York has experienced a recent influx of people drawn by the beauty of its unspoiled nature and the popularity of TV shows such as the Fabulous Beekman Boys. Small communities like Sharon Springs are slowly recovering from years of economic stagnation. All this could soon be over, should hydrofracking be permitted. As a family, our plan has always been to move back to upstate New York eventually. As long as a decision on fracking has not been made, we will have to put this plan on hold as the risks on our health and finances are simply too high.

Thomas Schmidt

Bergisch Gladbach, Germany,

and Sharon Springs

Have you had your exams?

To the editor:

Happy new year. Have you scheduled your annual exam? For women, this yearly visit plays a critical role in your health. A breast and cervical cancer screening is an important part of making sure women remain healthy. Men also need to have a colon cancer screening, if needed.

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), cervical cancer is the most preventable cancer in women. An annual pap test detects abnormal cells on the surface of the cervix that could be precancerous. At the same time, a test for human papillomavirus may find the virus that triggers the cells' abnormality. Finding abnormal cells and treating them in the early stages has significantly decreased the incidence of cervical cancer.

With this in mind, I would like to remind you about the Cancer Services Program of Fulton and Montgomery Counties. The program offers women 40-64 and men 50-64, who do not have health insurance, the opportunity to get a free breast and/or cervical cancer screening, and/or colorectal cancer screening kit.

Schedule a breast and cervical health screening. Cancer screenings and early detection saves lives. Unfortunately, despite its availability and success in reducing death from cancer, too many women neglect to take advantage of these life-saving screenings. The cancer services program is here to offer you free cancer screenings if you do not have health insurance.

Please call Suzanne Hagadorn, program coordinator, at (518) 841-3726.

Christina Akey,

Johnstown