News of Otsego County

Serving Otsego County, NY, through the combined reporting of Cooperstown's Freeman's Journal and the Hometown Oneonta newspapers.
 BREAKING NEWS 
 POLICE & FIRE 
 IN MEMORIAM  
 HOMETOWN PEOPLE 
 COLUMNS 
 EDITORIALS 
 LETTERS TO THE EDITOR 

 EMPLOYMENT  
 DINING & ENTERTAINMENT  
 REAL ESTATE  
 AUTOMOTIVE  
 REMEMBRANCE  
 GOODS & SERVICES

NAACP

Herzig, Rissberger Initiating Review Of OPD Practices

Herzig, Rissberger

Initiating Review

Of OPD Practices

Chief Brenner Denounces ‘Practices

That Hurt, Demean, Destroy Trust’

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

Brenner
Rissberger
Herzig

ONEONTA – The mayor and a senior Council member have already opened conversations with Police Chief Doug Brenner on how to review departmental operations in the wake of nationwide unrest following the May 25 death of George Floyd while being taking into custody in Minneapolis.

“First of all, I have confidence in our police chief and police department,” Mayor Gary Herzig said a few minutes ago.  “However, this is a time for all of us to do a little introspection and self-awareness and take a look at our operating procedures and our policies to make sure they are designed to do everything that we can to guard against any type of inequality in how we treat the public.”

He expects to be able to announce the form of the review – whether a commission, audit of OPD procedures, through Common Council or some other means – by the end of this week.

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Cooperstown To Protest Racism, Police Brutality 06-07-20
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for  SUNDAY, JUNE 7

Cooperstown To Protest

Racism, Police Brutality

14-19eventspage

PROTEST – 1 – 5 p.m. Come for a peaceful protest against the police violence that led to the death of George Floyd, raise money to support NAACP & ACLU. Be prepared to socially distance, wear your masks. Bring your friends, loved ones, and signs. All are welcome. Otsego County Courthouse, Cooperstown.

Letter From Oneonta NAACP: Outraged? Yes! We Exclaim, ‘Not Again’
LETTER from ONEONTA NAACP

Outraged? Yes!

We Exclaim, ‘Not Again’

When we saw the heinous act of another black man, George Floyd, intentionally being held down by four relaxed policemen and George not resisting arrest, but resisting suffocation and pleading “I can’t breathe, please let me stand,” it makes us return to the actions during the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s. It was difficult to watch one policeman putting his knee with increased pressure on Mr. Floyd’s neck and three policemen watching until another black man’s life was painfully lost.

We could go back to Emmett Till in Mississippi, Ronna Taylor in Louisville, Ky., Eric Garner in New York City, Trayvon Martin and just a few weeks ago, Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia, shot dead running through a predominately white neighborhood, along with many others too numerous to list or mention.

We are not surprised, we are angry. Yes, again we are shocked when most of these killings we have
witnessed, through new technology – except Emmett Till – result usually without immediate arrest. When these incidents happen they continually make your blood pressure spike for weeks, but we are not surprised of the bad police action throughout our nation and time and time again our justice system not resolving cases.

Shocked? No. Surprised? No. Outraged? Yes! And we exclaim, “Not again!” When is enough going to be enough? A national communication process will certainly not even start with this person presently living in the “wrong house” for three years.

Thursday evening, May 28, Joanne and I participated, along with 1,200 others, in a webinar presented by Derrick Johnson, CEO & president of our National NAACP, and panelist including presidents of the Minneapolis, Georgia, Louisville, New York Branches, each explaining the situations happening in their communities, what they are doing to resolve their immediate problems but also what they are doing with actions moving ahead.

President Derrick Johnson strongly emphasized that if change is to be made, people must use positive energy to complete the Census, get to the polls on Nov. 4, and make a concerted effort to know your legislators and community leaders.

As our vice president, Michelle Osterhoudt, stated in her memo to each of you – “Talk about it, denounce social injustice, raise awareness and most importantly, join your local NAACP.” These are the way that you can make your communities stronger.

THIS MOMENT IS CALLING US TO STAY STRONG EVEN THOUGH WE ARE OUTRAGED AND NOW MORE THAN EVER, WE MUST FIGHT AND DEMAND JUSTICE, AND “WHEN WE FIGHT, WE WIN”!

 

Lee Fisher is president of the

NAACP, Oneonta chapter.

Hundreds In Muller Plaza Join National Call For Justice

ONEONTA RALLY PEACEFUL

Hundreds In Muller Plaza

Join National Call For Justice

Perhaps as many as 500 people rallied peacefully in Oneonta’s Muller Plaza this afternoon to hear Rev. LaDana Clark, a former police officer, above, say, “Most of our police are trying to do the right thing, but it’s the bad apples have to be checked and removed! There can be no peace as long as an officer can place his knee on the neck of a black man and take his life in front of our eyes!”  As is happening nationwide, SUNY Oneonta student Sadie Starr Lincoln, Oneonta, inset left, organized this afternoon’s protest calling for justice and an end to racism following the May 25 death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Other speakers included SUNY students Johnson Brown and Kimberly Miller; Rev. Craig Schwalenberg, pastor, Unitarian Universalist Society and  Shannon McHugh, a member of the city’s Community Relations & Human Rights Commission. Attendees were urged to vote, to speak out when they see incidents of racism and to join the NAACP, Oneonta chapter;  Rev. Cynthia Walton-Leavitt of the Red Door Church was on site with NAACP membership applications. The crowd filled Muller Plaza and spread across the street.  Since social distancing was difficult, organizers urged attendees to be tested for COVID-19 following the gathering. (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)

Oneonta NAACP Calls For ‘Positive Energy’ In Response To Death

Oneonta NAACP Calls

For ‘Positive Energy’

In Response To Death

ONEONTA – Lee Fisher, Oneonta area NAACP president, released a letter this morning calling for citizens to make their communities stronger in the wake of the murder of George Lloyd, the black man who was pinned down and suffocated by Minneapolis police officers.

“When we saw the heinous act of another black man, George Floyd, intentionally being held down by four relaxed policemen and George not resisting arrest, but resisting suffocation and pleading ‘I can’t breathe, please let me stand,’ it makes us return to the actions during the Civil Rights Movement of the ’60s,” Fisher wrote.

Vigilance Encouraged At MLK Celebration

Vigilance Encouraged

At MLK Celebration

The sanctuary at First United Methodist Church in Oneonta was filled with inspiring words, social commentary and song this afternoon as crowds gathered to celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s 91st birthday. The event, hosted by the Oneonta NAACP, featured over a dozen speakers and performers including Yolanda Bush, seen above with Rich Mollen, as she sings “Rise Above,” written by Robin Seletsky and dedicated to the Oneonta NAACP. Mayor Gary Herzig, inset right, was also among the speakers, where he praised the NAACP and the Oneonta Police Department for their leadership in civil rights issues. He continued, encouraging vigilance, saying there was still work to do even in a “progressive and diverse” City like Oneonta: “Here in Oneonta, an individual visited our DMV and was told, ‘We cannot serve you,’ and was told to go to Cooperstown. In the year 2020 we are hearing this! As Dr. King said, ‘Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.’ Oneonta must be open and welcome all persons.”  Herzig’s reference was to the “Green Light” Law, where the state Legislature directed the issuance of driver’s licenses to illegal aliens; because of the special equipment and training required, county Clerk Kathy Sinnott Gardner has centralized processing those license applications at the main office in Cooperstown.  (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SUNDAY, JANUARY 19, 2020
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SUNDAY, JANUARY 19

Celebrate The Life Of

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

14-19eventspage

CELEBRATION – 2 – 4 p.m. Celebrate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with NAACP featuring songs from the Civil Rights movement, speech from Gary Herzig, NY Attorney General Letitia James, the ‘I Have A Dream’ speech, more. First United Methodist Church, 66 Chestnut St., Oneonta. Visit www.facebook.com/Oneonta-Area-NAACP-183152115619038/

George Betts, 84; Social Worker Turned To Farming

IN MEMORIAM: George Betts, 84;

Social Worker Turned To Farming

WORCESTER – George Betts, 84, of a social worker in New York City before moving here in 1984 to pursue farming, passed away on Oct. 2, 2018. He died peacefully after a long illness.

George was born June 30, 1934 in Highland Park, Ill., the son of Harlan and Ida Jane Betts.

He and his wife Regina met at an Off -Broadway theatre in New York City, where they both worked. They were married 61 years.

OJCA Honors Community Partner 2018 Hall of Fame Inductees

OJC Adds Community Friends

To 2018 Hall of Fame Class

From right: Qimane Williams, Bob the Bulldog, and Chris Kuhn, Director of the Oneonta Job Corps Academy, stand with the 2018 inductees into the OJCA Community partner Hall of Fame Inductees Ian Austin, The Oneonta Teen Center and Hometown Oneonta, Betty Lee, NAACP and Human Rights Commission, Kaler Carpenter, Club Odyssey, Jeanette Mulford, Days For Girls, Vanessa Pellegrino, NY Goat Yoga, and Alan Donovan, Friends of Oneonta Municipal Airport and GOHS. The six were honored for their support and involvement with the OJCA students in a brief ceremony before the start of the 5th annual community softball game between Oneonta Job Corps Academy and The Family Resource Network, this evening at Damaschke Field. (Libby Cudmore/AllOTSEGO.com)

Save

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, JUNE 17
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, JUNE 17

Revamped Clark

Sports Center Opens

14-19eventspage

OPENING DAY – 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Enjoy a coffee reception 8-10 a.m., and checkout the what’s new at The Clark Sports Center, Cooperstown. Info, www.clarksportscenter.com

COLOR RUN/WALK – 10 a.m. Take a 5K run/walk through the village of Cooperstown and 4 color splash stations as you complete the course. Supports the American Heart Association. Begins/Ends, Cooperstown Central School. Info, cooperstown5kcolorrunwalk.itsyourrace.com/event.aspx?id=6993

Community Vigil Planned To Honor Victims Of Gun Violence

Vigil To Honor Gun-Violence Victims

ONEONTA – A candlelight vigil to honor victims in the latest acts of gun violence, including Philando Castile, Alton Sterling and Dallas police officers, is planned at 5 p.m. Thursday, July 14, in Muller Plaza.

“The focus of the vigil will be to mourn the recent unnecessary loss of lives of police officers and young black men and to respect their memory,” said NAACP leader Regina Betts. “We stand with loved ones, friends and colleagues affected by violence.  We decry social injustices, especially racism, and seek  reconciliation and understand with those we somehow fear, resent or threaten.”

NAACP Speaker Leroy Gadsden Encourages, ‘Know Your Rights’

NAACP Speaker Leroy Gadsden

Tells Citizens, ‘Know Your Rights’

Lee Fisher, President of the Oneonta chapter of the NAACP, introduces Leroy Gadsden, B.S., J.D., at SUNY Oneonta's Center for Multicultural Experiences Gadsden's interactive program "Know Your Rights, 2015", dealt with police stops and civil rights. "We like and respect police officers. They do a hard job where they may not come home at night." said Gadsden, "Only about 9-10% of cops are bad and they ruin it for the rest. It is up to us to know our rights and hold them accountable for their actions and professionalism." (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)
Lee Fisher, president of the Oneonta chapter of the NAACP, introduces Leroy Gadsden, B.S., J.D., before Gadsden’s interactive program, “Know Your Rights, 2015.”  The program, presented this evening at SUNY Oneonta’s Center for Multicultural Experiences, dealt with police stops and civil rights. “We like and respect police officers. They do a hard job where they may not come home at night.” said Gadsden, “Only about 9-10 percent of cops are bad and they ruin it for the rest. It is up to us to know our rights and hold them accountable for their actions and professionalism.” (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)

 

 

Rain Stops as Locals, Spiritual Leaders Hold Candle Light Vigil For Charleston Victims

Rain Stops as Locals, Spiritual Leaders Hold Candle Light Vigil For Charleston Victims

Even the rain stopped for a moment today as Trynati Donato, Stamford, lit candles for each of the victims of the Emmanuel AME Church shooting as her uncle Lee Fisher, head of local NAACP,  addressed the crowd gathered in Muller Plaza for a candle light vigil on Sunday. "When you see people of all races embracing and supporting of the city of Charleston, NC, how do we capture the spirit of the moments throughout this land not just for yesterday or for today, but for the days to come long after the cameras and reporters are gone?" said Fisher in his speech, "Nine lives were taken from us, but we who stay behind remember how evil tries to win, but we know love can defeat anything." (Ian Austin/allotsego.com)
Even the rain stopped for a moment today as Trynati Donato, Stamford, lit candles for each of the victims of the Emmanuel AME Church shooting as her uncle Lee Fisher, head of local NAACP, addressed the crowd gathered in Muller Plaza for a candle light vigil on Sunday.
“When you see people of all races embracing and supporting of the city of Charleston, NC, how do we capture the spirit of the moments throughout this land not just for yesterday or for today, but for the days to come long after the cameras and reporters are gone?” said Fisher in his speech, “Nine lives were taken from us, but we who stay behind remember how evil tries to win, but we know love can defeat anything.” (Ian Austin/allotsego.com)
MLK Honored with Song and Speeches

Martin Luther King’s Birthday

Celebrated With Songs, Speeches

Line Christensen and Robin Seletsky play " O Mary Don't You Weep, Don't You Mourn" while the the MLK Chorus; TJ Wooden, Lee Fisher, Yolanda Sharpe and Denise Michaelson provide vocals  during the Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday celebration at the Elm Park Methodist Church on Sunday. The event was sponsored by the Oneonta area branch of the NAACP and the City of Oneonta Commission on Community Relations and Human Rights.
Line Christensen and Robin Seletsky play  “O Mary Don’t You Weep, Don’t You Mourn” while the the MLK Chorus – TJ Wooden, Lee Fisher, Yolanda Sharpe and Denise Michaelson – provide vocals during the Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday celebration at the Elm Park Methodist Church on Sunday. The event was sponsored by the Oneonta area branch of the NAACP and the City of Oneonta Commission on Community Relations & Human Rights.  (Ian Austin/allotsego.com)
Posts navigation

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