News of Otsego County

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Antonio Delgado

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for FRIDAY, OCTOBER 12
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for FRIDAY, OCTOBER 12

‘Renaissance Men’

Vocal Ensemble Performance

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CONCERT – 7:30 p.m. Boston’s premier vocal chamber ensemble “Renaissance Men” perform vocal music from all periods, by many composers. Tickets, $25 general admission. First United Methodist Church, 66 Chestnut St.,Oneonta. 607-433-7252 or visit oneontaconcertassociation.org

SQUARE DANCE – 7:30 p.m. Dance with friends at Doubleday Dancers Western Square Dance Clubs Fall All Plus Dance. Features Keith Harter as Plus caller, Jeanne Harter as Cuer. Admission, $5/person. Cooperstown Elementary School. 607-264-8128.

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‘Non-Partisan’ Sustainable Otsego Again Endorses Only Democrats

‘Non-Partisan’ Sustainable Otsego

Again Endorses Only Democrats

COOPERSTOWN – Sustainable Otsego, “an authorized non-partisan political action committee,” has again endorsed all Democrats in the Nov. 6 election.

The environmental group endorsed:

  • Democrat Antonio Delgado of Rhinebeck vs. U.S. Rep. John Faso, R-Kinderhook.
  • Democrat Joyce St. George, Margaretville, vs. state Sen. Jim Seward, R-Milford.
  • Democrat Chad McEvoy of Westford vs. Assemblyman Brian Miller, R-New Hartford.

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Kite Fest Flies High Over Cherry Valley

Kite Fest Flies High

Over Cherry Valley

The hundreds of people turned out in the fields of Campbell Rd in Cherry Valley today at the annual Kite Fest  where dozens of colorful kites of all shapes and sizes filled the sky. Above, Marieanne Coursen, Edmeston, flies a kite with her enthralled granddaughter Laurelye Tafel, New Berlin. At right, Antonio Delgado, the Democratic candidate for the NY-19th Congressional District who made an appearance at the event, shakes hands with Ginger Heitz, Cooperstown, and Kat Chiba, Cherry Valley.  (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)

 

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SVU Actress Diane Neal Back On 19th CD Ballot

SVU Actress Diane Neal

Back On 19th CD Ballot

Diane Neal

Diane Neal, Casey Novack on “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” is back on the 19th Congressional District ballot in the Nov. 6 general election, AP is reporting.

Last month, the state Board of Elections rejected enough of Neal’s petitions that she lost her listing; today, a state Supreme Court judge reversed that decision.

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HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 8
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 8

9/11 Memorial Event

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HERO RUN/WALK – 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. Memorial run/walk for all the heroes who lost their lives on 9/11/01 and honoring the heroes who still answer the call. Fly Creek Volunteer Fire Company., 832 Co. Hwy. 26, Fly Creek. Visit hero5k.itsyourrace.com/event.aspx?id=6181

RODEO – 4 – 11 p.m. Support your hometown baseball team at Saturday Night Showdown. Pre-rodeo features games, food, music. Rodeo kicks off at 7, followed at 9 by party with music, cash bar, snacks. Tickets, $20/adult. Available at SFCU locations, ISD, The Shipping Room, or Online. Oneonta Outlaws, Damaschke Field, 15 James Georgeson Ave., Oneonta. 607-432-6326 or visit www.facebook.com/oneontaoutlawsbaseball/

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Delgado: 19th Voters Ready To Let Incumbent Faso Go

Delgado: 19th Voters Ready

To Let Incumbent Faso Go

Thus, Democrat Says, His Campaign Job Interview
Before two dozen voters, a relaxed Antonio Delgado answered questions for two hours this evening in the Richfield Springs Public Library. (Jim Kevlin/AllOTSEGO.com)

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

Glen Ostrander, Town of Springfield, invites Delgado to the Springfield Center Fourth of July parade “when you’re elected.”

RICHFIELD SPRINGS – An independent poll in mid-July showed Democrat Antonio Delgado trailing Congressman John Faso, R-19, by five points, 44-49.

More important, Delgado told a small but rapt gathering in the public library here, fewer than 50 percent of voters in the 19th District that includes Otsego County approve of Faso’s performance in his first term.

“People are looking for someone else,” said the candidate.   His campaign, said Delgado, is the equivalent of a “job interview.”

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KUZMINSKI: On Playing The Race Card

Column by Adrian Kuzminski for July 27, 2018

On Playing The Race Card

Adrian Kuzminski

There was a time not so long ago when the ideal on racial issues was to be color-blind, presuming the equality of all.
When that proved not to effectively
address the underlying problem of racism, affirmative action became the order of the day. It played an important role in bringing minorities, especially blacks, out of the ghettos and into prominence in the professions, the media and middle-class life.
But, at the same time, life for most blacks in the inner cities continued to deteriorate in a downward spiral marked by increasing crime, police repression,
drugs and desperation.
This is the world which gave us rap and hip hop.
Antonio Delgado’s early hip-hop recording, “Painfully Free,” has come to dominate the opening stages of the race for the 19th Congressional District.
According to the New York Times, the lyrics of his CD, made in Los Angeles when he was 28, “include frequent use of a racial epithet common among black rappers, and criticize some of the founders as ‘dead presidents’ who ‘believe in white supremacy.’”
His opponent, Congressman Faso, was quick to jump on the issue, claiming, according to the Times, that Delgado’s lyrics are “inconsistent with the
views of the people of the 19th District and America.”
Delgado shot back at once, saying of Faso, according to the Times: “In his dated mind-set, he thinks it’s accurate to suggest that if you’re black or if you’re of a certain race, you can’t be of this community.”
In an earlier interview with his alma mater, Colgate University, reported by Hybrid Magazine, he discussed his CD, saying, “Hip Hop is misunderstood.” “Hip hop is a philosophy to live by … Hip hop is its purest form conveys the plight of the underprivileged.”

The Freeman’s Journal – Antonio Delgado confers with Adrian Kuzminski at last week’s candidates’ forum in Cooperstown, hosted by Sustainable Otsego.

Delgado, a product of a middle-class upbringing in Schenectady, and of Colgate, Harvard Law and Oxford University, hardly grew up a desperate ghetto kid. But
he did give voice to the plight of the underprivileged, as he says, and used their idiom to do so.
The world of inner city ghettos represents a festering wound in America, and its unsettling, provocative language is an unpleasant reminder to the rest of us of a major failure of our society – something we still need to fix.
No matter how uncomfortable it makes us, we should respect not condemn hip hop for the challenge it poses.
The rappers are telling us that racism, far from being something we can ignore, has been built into our culture, and thereby into how we think.
Delgado is saying that we’re not color-blind, that we’re all racists on some level. This is meant not to condemn us, but to invite us to acknowledge a common problem, which is the first step to overcoming it – like an alcoholic admitting he or she’s an alcoholic.
Like an addict in denial, Faso pretends to be color-blind. But he betrays his own prejudices by cynically stooping to play the race card against Delgado.
I’m not a racist, he insists, but Delgado must be
because he has the audacity to remind us of the truth of our tragic history.
By insisting that Delgado’s lyrics are un-American, when they are in fact as American as apple pie, Faso only deepens the racial divide. To exploit racism for votes is despicable demagoguery.
Luckily, the voters will have a choice in November of either giving in to their racism, or beginning to
transcend it.

Adrian Kuzminski, retired Hartwick College philosophy professor and Sustainable Otsego moderator, resides in Fly Creek.

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AD The Voice’s Rap Career Emerges As Campaign’s First Hot Potato

Editorial, July 20, 2018

AD The Voice’s Rap

Career Emerges As

Campaign’s First Hot Potato

Get ready, folks. We’re going to be hearing a lot of hip-hop music between now and Nov. 6.
It was generally known during the just-completed primary campaign in our 19th Congressional District that the victor, Antonio Delgado, had been involved in a rap venture in Los Angeles more than a decade ago, but details were fuzzy. And they didn’t really matter: Chances were even or better that he wouldn’t win.
But June 26, he did win the nomination to challenge freshman congressman John Faso, R-Kinderhook, and it didn’t take long for the New York Post to get or, or be put on, the scent.
“He put out an 18-song CD titled ‘Painfully Free,’ in 2006,” the Post reported July 8, “in which he frequently hurls the N-word, slaps the two-party political system, rips the ‘dead’ president as ‘white supremacists,’ blasts capitalism, likens blacks to modern day slaves, calls poverty the ‘purest form of terrorism’” etc., etc.
Ouch.

Get ready for hip-hop in campaign ads.

Since, other outlets are picking up on the story, thanks to a press release from Faso saying, ““I was shocked” – shocked! – “and surprised to learn Mr. Delgado authored some very troubling and offensive song lyrics.”
On July 12, HV1.com, the website for five weeklies around Woodstock, had this: “Faso hammers Delgado on past hip-hop lyrics; Delgado says Faso’s ‘feeding into racial biases’.”
On July 14 in The Gazette, Schenectady: “Faso pivoted from carpetbagger attacks to arguing that the Schenectady native’s hip-hop lyrics ‘paint an ugly and false picture of America’.”
On July 13, the Times Herald-Record, Middletown, reported on a statement from 17 local clergy: “Shame on (Faso). This tactic should be called out for what it is: a thinly veiled racist attack for the purpose of insinuating fear in the voters of our district.”
And it’s accelerating. The fat’s on the fire.

There’s a cautionary tale here.
At the end of May, six of the seven Democrats running in the primary signed a pledge agreeing not to criticize each other.
Why, in a hard-fought campaign where candidates were having a problem differentiating themselves from everybody else in voters’ eyes, would this be desirable?
From a practical standpoint, if Delgado’s hip-hop muse had been dissected in the primary, perhaps he wouldn’t be the Democratic candidate; if he had been anyhow, the rap revelations would have been a shock to no one by now.
Yes, there are practical reasons to fully practice First Amendment Rights.
As you might expect, Delgado – a Colgate and Harvard grad, Rhodes Scholar and lawyer at a top (albeit politically connected) firm – had a smooth response to the Post.
“This is a willful and selective misreading of my work for political purposes,” he said. “My music defies the same stereotypical notions that led you … to immediately hear certain words and think they are bad or scary. If you listen to the content of the lyrics, my mission is clear.”

In 2006, Congressional candidate Antonio Delgado was AD The Voice, producing hip-hop music in L.A.

One review of “Painfully Free,” the 2006 CD, cited in the Post, said its “hardcore hip-hop/rap numbers tear into society hypocrisies and imperfections.” The album notes call the sound “fresh, sharp, political and spiritual” –
not so bad.
In any event, voters can decide for themselves. Go to Spotify, the music site, type in “AD the Voice,” Delgado’s stage name, and you can listen to it all.

Of course, rap itself has been controversial since it came onto the general music scene a three decades ago.
In 2012, theologian Emmett Price III sought to understand the music as part of black tradition. A reviewer of his book of essays, “The Black Church and Hip Hop Culture,” that found both the church and rap were “impassioned with the same urgent desires for survival and hope.”
Nothing the matter with that. Still, the actual lyrics in AD the Voice’s numbers will no doubt be jarring to many in the 19th. And, if the lyrics are being misinterpreted, it will be Delgado’s challenge to put them in context. He very well might.
If you haven’t met him, you will find him open, engaging, approachable; hardly threatening – “a young Barack Obama,” he was called in this newspaper a year ago after his first appearance in Oneonta. He has many strengths to bring to bear.
For Faso, this issue may seem like pure gold, and it may be. (The first radio ad, by the Congressional Leadership Fund, cited Delgado’s views as “explosive,
out of touch, liberal.”)

But given Delgado’s TV ad in a last days of the primary – a cancer victim wins Faso’s assurances he will protect her insurance, only to vote to water down the Affordable Care Act; Google “antonio delgado promise ad” – he would be wise not to be complacent, which no doubt he isn’t.

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Delgado, DiPerna Tilt Over Rap CD, How To Handle It

Delgado, DiPerna

Tilt Over Rap CD,

How To Handle It

Democratic Candidate Speaks

To Full House In Cooperstown

Democratic congressional candidate Antonio Delgado thanks Greta Green, 9, for asking a question about gun violence and school safety at the end of a forum this evening at Templeton Hall. (Jim Kevlin/AllOTSEGO.com)

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

Delgado resisted answering questions about lyrics on a rap CD he produced in 2006, but Paula DiPerna, a former Congressional candidate herself, persisted.

COOPERSTOWN – Antonio Delgado was met with cheers and applause from 120 of the Democratic faithful – and a handful of Republicans – in Templeton Hall this evening.

Questions ranged from fracking to FERC and Social Security to Glass–Steagall.  A 9-year-old, Greta Green, who lives in Washington, D.C., but is visiting her grandmother, Cynthia Benjamin, in Garrattsville, asked about protecting children from gun violence.

“It hurts that a 9-year-old even asks that question,” he said.

But the question of the hour – the 19th District Congressional candidate’s former life as AD The Voice, a hip-hop performer in L.A. whose lyrics in his “Painfully Free” CD were liberally sprinkled with the N-word and epithets – was only touched on lightly during the formal part of the evening.

As the Q&A began, moderator Paula DiPerna advised the candidate she would be questioning him more closely later on the issue – Delgado’s rap career was reported on July 8 in the New York Post, and his Republican opponent, Congressman John Faso, issued a press release expressing “shock” at the “troubling and offensive lyrics” – and to be prepared.

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21 Railroad Ave. Cooperstown, New York 13326 • (607) 547-6103