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Everybody's Column

Trocaire is a key player in health care education

I read the March 17 editorial, "Kaleida-ECC deal a winner," and agree that Kaleida Health has been proactive in its approach to an upcoming shortage that health care facilities will be experiencing. At Trocaire College, we are very attuned to these shortages, since we have been a leader in educating health care professionals for almost 50 years. Approximately 85 percent of our 1,100 students are enrolled in a health care program, from nursing to massage therapy to radiologic technology and many more programs.

We are also in partnership with the Kaleida Health System, as well as the McGuire Group, Elder Wood Senior Care and the Catholic Health System through a Health Careers Enhancement Project initiative. This is a five-year initiative that will allow participants to obtain degrees and certifications in our health related programs of study, hopefully to help ease this shortage.

Trocaire has a reputation for offering quality health care programs on a two-year level. Our graduates work in health care facilities throughout Western New York, and the majority of our graduates stay right here.

Kathy Popielski

Director of Communications

Trocaire College


Story on major drug bust belonged on front page

It is interesting to note that this unbiased newspaper still had the same hue and cry about parking tickets on the March 7 front page, as if to say, "Help us, tickets are falling from the sky." On page A2, there was an argument over Parking Violations Bureau employees vs. regular police officers issuing tickets, and a remark was inserted to the effect that police officers could then spend more time "catching drug dealers."

But buried on page B3, in a very small article, was a report on a major drug bust by the men under Dennis J. Richards, the Buffalo Police Department's Chief of Detectives. Shouldn't this have been noted on the front page, instead of the panic over the issuing of legal parking tickets? I don't think the average person who reads this column is fooled by this type of reporting.

Michael J. Chernetsky



School dress code should apply to the teachers, too

The two photos accompanying the March 14 News story, "Stepping Stone Academy ordered by state to close at year's end," for me reveals something about the administration of the school. Obviously, the school requires appropriate attire for its students. In the photo, the boys are wearing a white shirt, tie and dress pants and the girls are wearing a pleated plaid skirt and blouse. However, the teacher is dressed as if he is going to spend a day at the mall. If the school has a code of dress for the students, then it needs similar standards for the professional staff.

Charles H. Campbell



Spitzer needs to respect Native American treaties

Attorney General Eliot Spitzer, in an attempt to gain attention in his quest for governor, has criminalized the very livelihood of New York State's native people on their tribal lands. At issue is our sovereign right to buy and sell tax-free tobacco, gasoline and other products off our reservations. Spitzer has coerced credit card companies into believing that Native Americans routinely break federal law by selling tax-free tobacco and gasoline. He has scared our shippers into halting our deliveries, and has now threatened our suppliers with fines and jail if they continue to deliver to our reservations.

Our land, our culture, our sovereignty -- these are the key pieces of our ethnic heritage. These, we must protect. We want to continue to do business, work at our jobs and do our best to earn an honest living. The U.S. Constitution has declared our treaties to be the "Supreme Law of the Land."

Why then is Albany so indifferent to our plight? Polls conducted within the last few weeks have indicated that 79 percent of New Yorkers support Native people and their tax-free status. Voters should call their lawmakers and tell them they agree with Gov. George Pataki to let our treaties stand.

Reginald Crouse

Red Nation Tobacco Co.



Officials must act now to reduce national debt

Nine trillion dollars and rising; that's where our national debt is heading. This is the path of fiscal irresponsibility that our leaders are taking. I find it inconceivable that our country can be this far in debt. Ross Perot -- remember him? -- campaigned for a balanced budget and debt reduction in the early 1990s. That debt structure pales in comparison to the current situation. What kind of legacy are we leaving our children and even their children?

The United States is the financial engine of the world, but we cannot continue to pursue this path of fiscal destruction. We cannot have it both ways -- lower taxes and higher spending. Our federal officials are trying to placate voters by giving their constituents tax cuts and entitlements. Our elected officials need to be concerned with the health of this country, not just being re-elected.

Ed Sabo

Grand Island


Republicans, Democrats deserve equal treatment

The Buffalo News continues to show its bias against the Republican Party and its officeholders. The latest evidence appeared in the placement of two stories.

Rep. Louise Slaughter, one of the Democrats' most politically active members, has been accused of violating House ethics rules. The charge is that she used government employees and resources to raise funds for her re-election campaign. The story was buried on page A6.

A few days later, Rep. Tom Reynolds, a Republican, made front-page news for using corporate travel and then, gasp, paying for it, in full accordance with the law.

While the story's author begrudgingly noted that the practice is lawful and widely used by Democrats as well as Republicans, the innuendo was obvious. That in the current atmosphere -- one being politically charged by partisan Democrats such as Slaughter -- corporations are bad people, even when those corporations are local employers.

David MacNeil

North Tonawanda


Trapping is humane way to conserve resources

In regard to recent articles and letters about trapping being barbaric, the trappers are doing something legal, ethical and under the supervision of the State Department of Environmental Conservation. Trapping is only barbaric in the eyes of certain people. The traps are not leghold, but foothold, and they are used only as a restraining device. Traps rarely damage an animal.

I have trapped hundreds of coyotes and foxes for farmers and suburbanites as predators or nuisance animals and as a fur when trapping season, which is set by law, opens.

Conservation means wise use of a renewable resource. Preservation means to preserve or keep. We can't stockpile wildlife. Take, for example, the domestic animal shelters across the country killing thousands of cats and dogs by lethal injection. Why can't they be left to live a normal life?

If the so-called wildlife experts want a real cause, do something about habitat loss and buy a hunting, fishing and trapping license. Don't force your political whims on others. Leave the control of renewable resources to game managers, biologists, trappers, hunters and loggers, and wildlife will have a balanced environment.

Al Reigle

Former trapper instructor, State DEC


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