Dr. Phil says
It was with dismay and disappointment that I read the New Year’s edition of the Freeman’s Journal. It is their right to choose whomever they want as Person/Persons of the year.
But to deify the four men that were chosen and present them as the saviors of Cooperstown is a direct insult toáevery one of us who have ever served as a Trustee for the Village.
They were elected to do a job and they are doing what they think is right just as all past Trustees have done. If they can put Cooperstown ``on a firmer financial footing,’’ good, that’s what they were elected to do. That’s what all of us in the past were doing our best to achieve. But to be so divisive in the way they are going about it and to imply that they are the only ones concerned is blatantly incorrect.
The paper also incorrectly stated that ``Grace Kull, rattled by the parking dispute declined to run again.’’ Nothing could be further from the truth. I declined to run again because I had served six years as a Trustee and if I ran again I would be ninety-years-old at the end of my third term.
There were other things that I wanted to do with my life. And I have. In this past year I have raised $5,000 to dig a well in an undeveloped country which will supply clean water to over 250 people for twenty years.
As far as being rattled by the parking dispute, let me state unequivocally, that I am proud to be one of the four who had the courage to stand up for what we believed in.áIf anything rattled me, it was the reaction of some of the citizens of the Village who were angered by our vote and acted with a mob mentality and personally attacked us.
The biggest insult was the attempt to humiliate us by the merchants on Main Street who put signs in their windows saying ``Shame on You’’ and putting our names on the signs. I was not and am not ashamed that I voted to try to get some much needed revenue in a manner which is perfectly acceptable by many cities and villages that depend on tourism and by the tourists themselves. The only other dependable source of income is toáraise taxes and that is unfair to the small tax base in Cooperstown. One of the most vocal against paid parking was Neil Weiller, who led the merchants in their anti-paid parking campaign.
You can disagree with someone’s point of view, but civilized people do it in a civil manner. Not by personal attacks.
One of the other points made in the newspaper is that these men ``ask questions until they get answers,’’ Why is it that they all voted to ban parking behind the Fire House and then re-voted to allow the parking because, and this was in the newspaper, ``They didn’t understand what they were voting for the first time.’’ Why didn’t they understand? Why didn’t they ask questions then?
As Trustees you are expected toáunderstand what you are voting for, and it is inexcusable that these men admitted that they didn’t understand what they were voting for.
The implication is that no other Trustees ask questionsáor try to understand the issues.
That is a great injustice to Lynne Mebust and Jeff Katz. I worked with them on the Board and can attest to the fact that there are no two people more concerned with the welfare of the Village and who delve deeply into the issues, get the facts and act on them.
It is unfair for the Journal to print articles pitting the four ``Men of the Year’’ against the two of them, who I believe act honestly and prudently and always in the best interest of the citizens of the Village.
When you go to the polls to vote in the next Village election, don’t be swayed by biased opinions. Look at all the issues and the exemplary records of Lynne and Jeff. Lynne has been one of the best Trustees Cooperstown has been fortunate to have and Jeff, who has many years experience as a Trustee and Acting Mayor is the logical person to be the next Mayor of Cooperstown.
Remember what Dr. Phil says, ``No matter how flat a pancake is, it always has two sides.’’
Hawkeyes look forward to season
On behalf of Cooperstown’s new baseball team, I would like to thank all those who have supported our efforts to bring a high-quality baseball experience to Doubleday Field. As many of you know, our very successful ``name the team,’’ contest concluded recently. Out of approximately 80 entries from across the United States, Cooperstown resident David Pearlman submitted the winning entry, the ``Cooperstown Hawkeyes.’’
We are currently attempting to select a team logo from several excellent entries developed by our local BOCES students.
The selection process will conclude within the next two weeks; however, the expertise and professionalism demonstrated by all of the BOCES contestants has been truly gratifying.
Over the last several months, several community members have approached me and asked about how they could play a more active and direct role in team affairs. We would welcome all members of our community who wish to become involved with the team.
The first meeting of the ``Friends of the Cooperstown Hawkeyes,’’ will be held on Sunday, Jan. 17, at 3 p.m. in the meeting room at Cooley’s Stone House Tavern, 49 Pioneer St. in Cooperstown Village.
The meeting topics will include the general direction of the team as well as many specific aspects of team organization and administration. Everyone is welcome to attend.
The Cooperstown Hawkeyes are looking forward to a great inaugural season. Thank you for you support and participation.
Thomas J. Hickey, President