Guest Commentary

Capitalizing on natural blessings

Rail trails are catching on all over, and not just in this country. Take, for example, the recent story in the New York Times under the headline: “Success of Irish trail shows that maybe you can eat the scenery.” A long-standing lament by those who live in scenically splendid but ...

Trump, Cuomo, guns and mental health

Ever since Sandy Hook in December 2012, “mental health” has become central to the post-mortem debates about the causes of and solutions to these mass school shootings. Prominent political figures as disparate as President Trump and Gov. Cuomo offer their obligatory notions about how ...

State land PILOTs would undo governor’s Adirondack progress

Dear Governor Cuomo, We write to ask that you amend your proposed state budget and legislative proposals in order to restore existing provisions of Real Property Tax Law sections 532, 534 and 542 that annually authorize the payment of ad valorem taxes to Adirondack and Catskill local ...

What if?

Within the last week, Saranac Lake village officials have reached out to our community seeking ideas to include in an application for a grant to help revitalize our downtown. That caused me to think about what could be and what is needed to keep Saranac Lake, one of the best small communities ...

More roads closed to bicycling

I am writing in response to your editorial “Good deal on Boreas Ponds,” published on Jan. 31. You are satisfied with the classification of the northern portion since a wilderness designation prevents any mountain bike use of the former logging roads surrounding the Boreas Ponds. You ...

Some history on local skiing

In the Adirondacks of New York, John R. Booth of Ottawa brought a pair of skis to Saranac Lake in 1892. The natives, amazed and curious, had several pairs of skis run up by Napoleon Bailey, a carpenter at Branch and Callanan’s mill. Mr. Bailey had come from Wisconsin, where Scandinavian ...

Resist authoritarianism with education

Our founding fathers signed a Declaration of Independence that supposedly shed the yoke of the monarchy and substituted a participative democracy with three interactive branches of management. This management framework rests on a constitution and by-laws designed to ensure that participative ...

Reaching out to prevent suicide

Suicide is a difficult topic. People tend to keep their thoughts about suicide to themselves, which can increase the feeling of being alone in the world. In my experience as a counselor working with children and adults over the past 20 years, I would say that the average person has thought ...

A story untold: the history of American slavery

In 2017 the Southern Poverty Law Center in Montgomery, Alabama, conducted an investigation into how the history of slavery is taught in high schools. The investigation included surveys of more than 1,000 high school seniors, an examination of state standards, American history textbooks and ...

Help kids in their first 1,000 days

Most of the following information was taken from a UNICEF press release (New York, Sept. 21, 2017), which can be found at https://www.unicef.org/media/media_100893.html. According to a recent report published by the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the United States is behind many other ...

The Olympics of history

Through Steven Spielberg’s Oscar-nominated and winning film “Bridge of Spies,” James B. Donovan’s legacy has been resurrected and introduced to generations of people across the globe as “Stoikiy Muzhik,” also known as “Standing Man” — a man true to principle in the face of ...

TRiO will not prosper under the current PROSPER Act

This month, TRiO Student Support Services at Paul Smith’s College will recognize National TRiO Day by hosting a local food luncheon and community gathering on Friday, Feb. 23 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. upstairs in the library. 2018 also marks the 50-year anniversary of the federally funded ...

The challenge for Saranac Lake’s next generation

Twenty years ago in 1998, volunteers, businesses and community leaders came together and worked tirelessly to make Saranac Lake an All-America City. This prestigious award is bestowed upon 10 U.S. communities each year by the National Civic League and recognizes places “whose citizens work ...

An even better Aldi for Saranac Lake

The village of Saranac Lake Development Board is reviewing a proposal from Aldi to construct a new, larger grocery store to replace its current building on Lake Flower Avenue. Let’s be clear. Everyone loves Aldi. Unfortunately, Aldi has proposed a project that is not in keeping with ...

Confession by deception

Most police interrogations are simple, straightforward procedures: Detectives confront the suspect with evidence, and the individual confesses. However, in those cases wherein the suspect does not confess, detectives often resort to deception, or what the many critics of this practice call ...

DA wore down Tanveer Hussain

Quotes in the newspapers mention the extensive investigation by local police, with the aid of state police, into the case of Tanveer Hussain. The Essex County district attorney’s office claimed their delay in moving ahead was waiting for additional evidence. Per the DA’s legally required ...

50 years ago today, the USS Pueblo was captured — my story

Like many other young men, I was drafted into the United States Army during the Vietnam era. I am not a hero, never saw combat and never was sent overseas, but I did help my country one dark morning exactly 50 years ago today. As a seargent in the United States Army, I was stationed in ...

Tanveer Hussain suffered injustice

Tanveer Hussain’s case is officially closed, but in the interest of justice, I must present some facts that have not been publicized, including what I believe to be improper acts by public officials, and rebut the press release from Essex County District Attorney Kristy Sprague. Tanveer, a ...

If those walls could talk — Hotel Saranac memories

Nearly every day I walked by the Hotel Saranac and gave a passing look through its windows, wondering if it ever would really open again. I vested a considerable amount of time in that facility from my first days working at Paul Smith’s College as a hotel instructor and through varying ...

Prospects are good for Saranac Lake

Our village has an exciting future. As we look ahead to the new year and chart our community’s course, we start from a solid foundation of progress because, on any measure, the village is in a much better place than it was in 2010. Since that time, our tax rate went up only 2.5 percent, ...