It’s time for a change

To the editor:

As I sit in front of my kitchen window, huddled over a steaming cup of coffee, I am struck by the patchwork of ochre, sienna, and crimson unfolding before my eyes. My breath catches in my throat as I look out on the tapestry of hills before me: the season of change is upon us.

Next month, voters across our region will have an opportunity to make a change that will affect all of us in the North Country for the next four years: do we keep our elected leader Elise Stefanik, a national divisive partisan leader, or take a chance on a moderate who promises to affect the change our region so desperately needs?

For me, the answer is clear: Elise Stefanik is an extremist who’s more interested in advancing her political career in Washington than serving the hardworking folks of the North Country.

As the third most powerful Republican in the House, Stefanik has risen in the ranks of Washington’s conservative elite by being a lackey to extreme figures like Donald Trump, who dangled the carrot of making her his VP. Whether she was supporting legislation to overturn the 2020 election results, making false claims about the security of our democratic elections, or voting to undermine Biden’s electoral wins hours after the Capitol insurrection killed a police officer and wounded many more, it’s clear that extremist Elise is more focused on advancing her own political agenda than helping residents of District 21.

When Stefanik is engaging in embarrassing displays of identity politics by calling democrats “pedos,” on Twitter, how is that helping working families pay for the insulin they can’t afford (because she voted against a bill that would keep prices low)? When she runs ads that promote the idea of the “great replacement” conspiracy theory– the same bile that the evil Buffalo shooter espoused in his manifesto before he shot down innocent Black grandmothers grocery shopping — how is that bringing unity to our district? When she is voting against a bill that would help veterans exposed to toxic chemicals get treatment, how is it fair to gamble with vets’ health?

My great-grandfather, who was born and raised in Schroon Lake and operated a motel business there for decades, was a lifelong Republican. I am confident that if he were alive today, he would find Stefanik’s brand of conservatism nauseating and unrecognizable to the values he held dear.

I believe that most people who live in the North Country are inherently good and common-sense people. People that would sooner stop their trucks on the side of the road to see if you’re okay — even if you have a different political bumper sticker on your car than them — than to hurl insults at you.

We are people who help their neighbors, love their communities, and want to do the right thing. So why are we letting an extremist Elise use our hardworking district to advance her lofty career ambitions, at our own expense?

Emily Hirsch-Steinberg

AuSable Forks


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