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April 10, 2013

Top 10 reasons Skip West is wrong

By Chuck Pinkey
The Daily Star

---- — This past Saturday in The Daily Star, there was a guest columnist named Skip West, who wrote a piece titled “Gun column fuels lawlessness, paranoia.” Skip takes issues with my stance on Gov. Cuomo and the NY Safe Act. To get up to speed, they may be viewed on under Columns (Chuck Pinkey Section and Guest Column Section).

Skip claims my words are “a torrent of twisted thinking, prejudice and hate” and draws an analogy between me and John Wilkes Booth and Timothy McVeigh. As an educated man, Skip should know that “It’s better to be silent and be thought stupid than to open your mouth and prove it to be true.”

He goes on with his “Letterman’s Top 10 Reasons” why Pinkey is causing paranoia and chaos. I particularly like No. 2. It deals with the “frenzy” and fear caused by the “NYS Tip Line” for suspected illegal gun possession. Skip says, “I will call the tip line, and state that I have seen you with a gun that might be illegal. An agent will come to your house, and politely request to see the gun in question. After examining the weapon, the agent will inform you that your gun is perfectly legal and leave, after thanking you for your cooperation. The end.”

Maybe he’ll even bring coffee and doughnuts, and afterwards, we can sit in the backyard and watch the butterflies. Get real, Skip, don’t you believe in warrants, or probable cause, or that part of the Constitution about unreasonable searches and seizures? Just come on in, on an anonymous tip, and search my house! Is that your America? It’s not mine. It’s got nothing to do with whether I have, or have not, anything to fear.

Suppose an officer got a tip that you were using marijuana. Would you be expected to show him every shoe box or potted plant in your home or on your property, just because someone called the police and said that you “might be” smoking dope?

No. 5 is about Gov. Cuomo’s condoning of final trimester abortion. Skip states that I “make it sound like our governor is poised above a helpless infant with bloody knife in hand, ready to slash away another innocent life … Disgusting!”

Please refer to the last sentence in paragraph two. Focus, Skip. A fetus in the final trimester (seventh, eighth and ninth month) is capable of life outside the womb. During an abortion, instruments are inserted into the womb, and the baby’s skull is crushed and its spinal cord snapped.

Causing death in such a way … My God, Skip! John Wilkes Booth, Timothy McVeigh, our worst serial killers, and even cows at a slaughterhouse were, and are, more humanly killed that these innocent babies.

When a man rises to the level of governor, many of his decisions affect life and death. For a man in power to condone this act and by his numerous speeches, almost encourage it, is abhorrent, yet you say my words are “disgusting!”

Let’s lump Nos. 6 and 7 together. Six refers to Governor Cuomo and the photo op in Herkimer/Mohawk after the tragic shooting, and seven is his political cowardice when it comes to fracking. Skip maintains that Gov. Cuomo cares, and I agree, but Andrew Cuomo cares only about the political fortunes of Andrew Cuomo.

On fracking, Skip states, “Everyone should read the latest articles on the Pennsylvania ghost towns that enjoyed a ‘fracking boom’ about five years ago. Sorry, I do not want to drive through Otsego County five years from now and see empty stores, deserted homes, a poisoned environment and betrayed people.”

Skip, if you can see through the haze of your existence, the boom is still happening in Pennsylvania, and dude, the flowers are still growing and the water is still pure. It is here in your beloved Otsego County that you can TODAY find “empty stores, deserted homes,” falling enrollment in our schools, and the only betrayed people are those who believe the bilge you spew.

Finally, No. 10 is about violence and how I am trying to incite it. Once again, I find myself engaged in a battle of wits with an unarmed opponent. Look, Skip, no one wants trouble. However, Americans feel very strongly about our freedoms and especially our right to keep and bear arms under the Constitution. 

With restrictive laws passed without public input, tip lines, polarizing figures like Obama, Biden, Feinstein and Cuomo “making hay” after every tragic shooting, registration of assault rifles, background checks for every box of 22 LR ammo, proposed $2,000 per year insurance policies for all gun owners, newspapers publishing names and addresses of gun owners … am I the one causing trouble, Skip?

CHUCK PINKEY is a retired area businessman. He can be reached at The views expressed in this column do not necessarily reflect those of The Daily Star and its editorial board, but the author thinks they ought to.