To the Editor:
We learned today that NYS Attorney General Letitia James will be intervening in the Greens of Chester development issue. In her press release, she has basically branded anyone who has dared to stand up for their property rights against an aggressive land developer, as “anti-Semitic." Furthermore, she attempts to bolster her position by citing an increase in anti-Semitic incidents in New York State! This media tactic is called “triangulation” and is one of the tactics used by feckless individuals whose arguments do not hold water vis-à-vis the facts. She expects people to believe that if you argue against a business interest that just happens to be held by Satmar Hasidics in this case, you are no different than those who paint swastikas on synagogue doors or who burn crosses on lawns. She should be ashamed of herself!
Clearly, she either does not understand what is going on here in Chester and Orange County or has decided to support the rich and powerful developer’s interests for political purposes using the specious argument of discrimination to hide her motives. In her attempt to frame this as “anti-Semitic discrimination,” she makes no mention of the fact that this special interest group has managed to create communities that are 100 percent white, 100 percent of a single faith, and 100 percent following a single creed and code of conduct. No dissent is allowed in these communities, and those who would dissent are hounded from their midst and expelled. Apparently, this is not discrimination in the eyes of the Attorney General.
Ironically, the Attorney General herself, as a person of African descent, would not be permitted to live in any of these segregated communities. What’s more, even if she could get in, as a woman she would also be subject to the narrow codes of conduct for women that have been fought against passionately in the United States for more than five decades. Yet, she defends this special interest group, which has brought discrimination all the way up from the savage practice of keeping anyone who is not “our kind” either out of the community or deprived of rights, to the fine art imbuing the discriminatory special interest group with special rights, privileges, and legal protections!
This nation has been fighting discrimination for centuries and has made great strides during the past seven decades against it. Yet there are still those who wish to implement segregation, racial “purity,” and severely restrictive sex roles based on their own dogmatic doctrines. There are those, among them white supremacists, who would like to create communities that comprise 100 percent white people. Fortunately, they are mostly seen for the bigots, racists, and haters they are and very little comes of their efforts. However, one special interest group has achieved 100 percent segregated communities right here in Orange County and this group is seeking to establish similar communities everywhere it goes. In fact, they have been wildly successful at bringing their brand of absolute discrimination to fruition and have even engaged the support of elected officials.
The issues at hand in this case were, are, and will continue to be about land use and water. Yet, as expected, their minions have been able to turn this into being about anti-Semitism even though nothing could be further from the truth. This attempt at making themselves appear to be the “victims” when they are attempting to circumvent legal requirements for new water tests and victimize neighboring homeowners, will not work. We will continue to fight for our land use and water rights as homeowners and citizens even if our elected officials attempt to demean our motives and call us names. We will not be dissuaded from our goals.
Finally, and I know I speak for my neighbors and the people of Chester when I say this, we embrace change, diversity, and new neighbors. However, those who would be our neighbors must respect our rights to clean and abundant water, the rural lifestyle quality we enjoy, and freedom from fear of financial devastation.