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Goodbye to a town that won’t say Confederate flags are wrong

To the editor:

Public display of the battle flag of the Army of the Potomac — or, as we have come to call it, the flag of the Confederacy — is not a symbol of honorable intentions in the history of our nation or the constitutional republic which we all now live in. The Confederate flag is now and has been throughout its history an enigmatic symbol of division and intolerance as well as the defeated banner of the Confederate States of America, a vanquished enemy of the USA, aka the constitutional republic in which we all now live. The symbol of this flag to the majority of the citizens of the USA is tantamount to the acrimonious nature of the German swastika flag. The Federal Republic of Germany prohibits public display of the swastika.

It is not my intent or reasoning to diminish our First Amendment right to freedom of speech or the display of such. It is my sadness at the resistance and ignorance we have codified by not recognizing the freedoms contained in the Constitution, as they apply to our freedom to declare an objection to the malevolent display of this very controversial symbol of intolerance and a nation divided. The wound only cuts deeper when combined with the nature of our current national unrest.

I commend John Quinn (a town of Tupper Lake councilperson) and his position on the social policy issue concerning the public display of the flag of the CSA, a defeated enemy of the USA. In my humble opinion, the town board’s lack of empathy and historical relevance is just more proof of the lack of backbone that has been endemic in the political environment of this small town and village. They are always missing the big picture. There are many people who have given up on the hypocrisy of the two governing bodies, town and village, and I am in that group of citizens. The real reason why TL does not gain the growth and diversity seen in many of the surrounding municipalities is a result of the dysfunctional one-party dominance. I have participated in attempts to broaden the exposure and depth of perceptions, but the mindset remains impenetrable. There is arrogance without true purpose. The resulting impotence leaves TL constantly following and never leading in any definable social issues outside of its antiquated right-wing mindset.

There are so many cultural skeletons in the “closet” of TL political and social culture. It makes my blood boil as I am reminded of the political incompetence I have witnessed as a resident for the last 25 years. This incident just reinforces my opinion of the undeniable weakness of the political/social environment that exists in TL. What you see is not what you get. The underbelly of this quaint little community has a very ugly discriminatory subculture they try to hide behind displays of situational altruism. As a result, there are a lot of people who do not buy into that charade and leave. I am one of those people, as I say goodbye and good luck as of Oct. 12, 2020, my last day as a citizen of the Tupper Lake community.

With all due respect,

Wayne L. Leonard

Tupper Lake

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