The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

Chuck Pinkey

October 11, 2011

Things seem to be a little strange these days

Maybe it's global warming, sunspots or pre-fracking hysteria, but hasn't last week had more than its share of peculiar editorial columns, insane settlements, bizarre verdicts and outlandish causes?

On Oct. 1, we read a column in The Daily Star lamenting about condemned men in Texas not being given their choice for a last meal. Oh, the poor souls. How could we be so cruel and cheap?

Let's focus. WE ARE KILLING THEM! They are murderers and rapists, who have been through endless appeals, and finally after 15 to 20 years, their sentences are being executed. Who cares what they want for a last meal?

Rest assured these criminals have been treated much more humanely than they treated their victims. Besides, heartburn from a heavy meal can lead to esophagus erosion, and we all know how dangerous that can be.

Secondly, we have the city of Oneonta and its insurance company paying $135,000 to a man who was charged with third-degree aggravated unlicensed operation, resisting arrest, second-degree harassment and unlawful possession of marijuana.

A beating occurred, after he fled on foot. An attorney for the police said the officer used justifiable force when the suspect reached into his pocket while he was on the ground.

It reminded me of earlier days in the Black Rock district of Buffalo while in college.

Because of folks behaving like drunken fools on weekends, the Buffalo police would patrol the fraternity neighborhoods and get downright physical if we didn't cooperate.

Resisting arrest and reaching into one's pocket were not options. A real beating and lead poisoning would have certainly resulted. Besides, we knew we were wrong, and we never blamed the police for doing their job.

The true danger here is the intimidation of police. Some day a young cop will be afraid to react or will hesitate to use force and therefore be killed. Surely, the young widow and her fatherless children will understand.

Next, direct from the Italian Riviera, we welcome Amanda Knox, aka Foxy Knoxy, the American She-Devil, and the next O.J. Simpson. They could not prove her guilt. Does botched DNA, bloody footprint and only circumstantial evidence ring a bell?

The poor Italian authorities were confronted with a huge media frenzy and a smiling young lady too beautiful to be a killer. I can hear them now: "Send her home and let the crazy Americans make a movie. She might even be in Playboy!"

Interestingly, Amanda Knox after four years in an Italian prison was able to address the court in "fluent" Italian. So what's the problem with Hispanics in the U.S. not speaking English?

Finally, we have the left's answer to the Tea Party, "Occupy Wall Street." This is an organization of misfits who champion the destruction of capitalism and call for an end to wealth inequality and corporate influence in government.

Their tactics include civil disobedience, civil resistance, occupation and picketing. Recently they had two protests in New York City totaling 2,700 people with more than 780 arrested. That's about a 30 percent arrest rate. You may find this hard to believe, but in little Otego, we had two Tea Parties totaling more people and a 0 percent arrest rate. How about that?

Occupy Wall Street wants a presidential commission created to separate money from politics. Good luck on that one! With my President Barack Obama due to raise almost a billion dollars in campaign contributions, it's unlikely he'll hoist that banner.

They have the backing of Michael Moore, rapper Lupe Fiasco, Radiohead, Roseanne Barr and billionaire George Soros. Now that's odd! George Soros promoting a group that wants to get money out of politics!

In the New York City rally, it was obvious that most were students, and with the exception of a beautiful blonde dressed like a '60s hippie, they appeared to be rather tattered, and shall we say, polluted.

Let us compare the typical Tea Party member with the typical Occupy Wall Street member. Tea Party member bathes daily, OWS doesn't. Tea Party member has a job, OWS doesn't. Tea Party member pays taxes, OWS member lives off them. Tea Party member is sober and can use complex sentences, Occupy Wall Street member inhales.

How did we come to this? Why are the people who pay taxes called selfish for not wanting to pay more, yet those who do not pay taxes and are demanding that others pay more are not called selfish? Go figure?

Yep. Quite a week! Executions on an empty stomach, police paying law breakers, a beauty that may have gotten away with murder and a return to the 1960s "power to the people."

Chuck Pinkey is the owner of River Valley New Holland Inc. in Otego. He can be reached at

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