Get military guns off of the streets

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion The purpose of a Marine/Army infantry squad is to “locate, close with and destroy the enemy with fire and close combat” (FMFM 6-3). The primary weapon for these units is the M-16, which has been easily re-designated as the AR-15 in the civilian environment.The M-16/AR-15 has been designed to inflict maximum casualties on our opponents through its range, velocity and cyclic rate of fire. Our soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines are trained extensively, repetitively and constantly in the proper use of these weapons. A civilian shouldn’t have access to these deadly firearms.If the politicians are serious about reducing civilian casualties caused by firearms, then their primary recourse should be to make these assault weapons illegal. The politicians should establish a buyback program and get these firearms off the streets. Or perhaps this action would be resisted by too many people who are insecure in their “manhood.”Disclaimer/validation — I’m a retired Marine with over 22 years service, including fighting in Vietnam, who has witnessed, up close and personal, the damage an M-16/AR15 can do to the human body.J.P. KIRBYSchenectadyMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesMotorcyclist injured in Thursday afternoon Schenectady crashSchenectady police reform sessions pivot to onlineTroopers: Schenectady pair possessed heroin, crack cocaine in Orange County Thruway stopSchenectady’s Lucas Rodriguez forging his own path in dance, theater, musiclast_img read more

Letters to the Editor for Wednesday, Dec. 25

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionGrateful for teacher’s dedication and loveOur wonderful teacher, Barbara Dworkin, is a unique person, who has been teaching English to elderly people for two decades.We love her very much.We all started learning English after 60 years old when we came to the United States from different countries. Each of us has their own past. Barbara is a true American, who managed to unite us into one family. She taught us to respect each other in the class. It is very difficult for old people – everyone wants to express their opinion.Our lessons are always interesting. All articles are informative and useful. Lessons include American history, holidays, medicine, various advertisements and scams by phone and mail — letters we receive from different offices. In short, she helps us survive in America.We have visited the Anne Frank Museum, Clark Museum, Schenectady Stockade and other interesting historical and art places. We had many picnics. Barbara organized meetings with interesting people and prepared us for citizenship.Barbara worked at Washington Irving School as a teacher, and for the last 10 years, she has been working with us as a volunteer.During this time, many of us have become grandparents and even great-grandparents. Many are no longer here. The remaining are 80-90 years old; some come to class with a cane or walker or in a wheelchair.We wish her a long life, happiness, joy and health. Do not lose your smile and love and respect for people. Many thanks. With love, your students.Marina GlikinaSchenectadyThe letter was also signed by 11 other students.Many people gave to help our veteransThe officers and members of Catholic Daughters Court Catherine Esther #1264 would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to all the people in the area communities who contributed items and money to the holiday collection for veterans and deployed military.We wish to thank the NBT Bank, Fort Plain, Our Lady of Hope Church, Fort Plain and Lee’s Shops at Wagner’s Square, Canajoharie for their cooperation in letting us place the collection boxes at their locations. We’d also like to thank Arkell Hall Adult home for joining us in collecting recommended items. We are extremely grateful for the publicity afforded us by the Courier-Standard, the Recorder, My Shopper, the Pennysaver and other area newspapers.Because of the response from the communities, we sent 12 large boxes of toiletries, warm clothing, snacks and gift items to the Veterans’ Administration Medical Center in Albany.The collection was picked up and taken to the VA by Lisa Bowman, a retired Air Force nurse who lives in Canajoharie and works at the Albany VA.The items were distributed to the veterans and wounded warriors in their nursing home there before Christmas. We also received enough money in donations to purchase 20 holiday care packages for deployed soldiers from the Soldiers’ Angels organization.This was a wonderful response from our little communities and we thank you all for joining us in supporting our wounded military and veterans, along with our deployed soldiers during the Christmas season.May God bless you for your generosity.Marlene NalliFort PlainThe writer is regent and collection coordinator for Court Catherine Esther #1264, Catholic Daughters of the Americas.More from The Daily Gazette:Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusGov. Andrew Cuomo’s press conference for Sunday, Oct. 18EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationlast_img read more

Regus moves to Blythe Valley Parker

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Chesterton’s future in balance

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Retailers in Italy could be hit hard by new law

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Omnibus bill on job creation weakens ulema’s role in certification: Indonesia Halal Watch

first_img“What the government can do instead is implement alternative streamlining measures that do not contradict existing substantive regulations, such as the MUI’s edicts on what passes as a halal product,” Ikhsan said, adding that religion was at the core of halal certification, rendering MUI’s role integral.He went on to say that, to prevent any confusion regarding differing fatwas on halal products should the new provisions pass into law, the government must give the final word on the matter to the MUI in accordance with prevailing laws.Read also: Omnibus bill allows President to scrap bylaws, weakens regional administrations“In our view, religious laws have been co-opted by the state. The government intends to grant power to the BPJPH [to issue halal certification]. It is something that will likely be met with resistance from Muslims,” he said. Amid the contentious public debate surrounding the recently submitted omnibus bill on job creation, nongovernmental organization Indonesia Halal Watch has raised concerns about several new stipulations in the bill, which it says will negatively impact the country’s halal certification regulations if they become law.Halal Watch executive director Ikhsan Abdullah said in a statement that several stipulations in the omnibus bill, while necessary to streamline redundancies in prevailing laws, could act as a detriment to the existing halal certification procedure, which mainly relied on fatwas (edicts) issued by the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI).He said the new stipulations, including Articles 1 and 7 which would replace or add to Law No.33/2014 on halal product guarantees and Government Regulation No. 33/2018, would completely do away with the MUI’s role in the certification procedure, as they would shift the authority to handle the issuance of halal certifications to the Halal Certification Agency (BPJPH). Ikhsan said the organization objected to Article 7 of the bill, which he said would make it possible for private parties to declare independently that their products were halal without prior certification under the MUI’s supervision.“It will disrupt Muslims’ trust in the halal logo, which they have long regarded as the final word on the halal factor as they consume the products in question,” he said.Food and beverage producers have expressed difficulties complying with the mandatory halal certification regulation, specifically when it comes to fulfilling requirements related to product re-audits for adding new ingredients, halal storage, distribution and transportation.Indonesian Food and Beverage Producers Association (GAPMMI) committee head for public policy and inter-institutional relations Doni Wibisono said it was difficult for food and beverage producers to meet the certification requirements as it required a re-audit every time new ingredients were added.“Even if we have a change of flavor in one product, we have to re-audit it, whereas before, we just had to verify whether the new ingredients were safe,” Doni said last month. (rfa)Topics :last_img read more

Hundreds of communities to run digital literacy programs nationwide

first_imgThe ministry also has plans to visit every school in Indonesia to train teachers so that they could become an active part of creating a digitally literate society.“Digital literacy is the responsibility of all of us,” Slamet said during a press conference at Gojek’s headquarters in Jakarta on Feb. 28.One of the communities the ministry is working with is called SiBerkreasi, which was founded with the aim of sharing positive content on social media.Head of SiBerkreasi Hermann Josis Mokalu, a member of Indonesian pop group Project Pop, told the audience at the event that, after entering its third year, the community had collaborated with 103 different stakeholders from content creators to government officials, carried out its digital literacy programs in 462 locations in Indonesia and had around 182,000 downloads of its 85 digital literacy series books. (ydp) Topics : “In order not to lose momentum, we must work hard together to improve Indonesia’s digital literacy.”Acting head of the ministry’s informatics empowerment directorate, Slamet Santoso, said the ministry was part of the National Movement of Digital Literacy. “It has more than 100 communities joining in. Everybody is working for digital literacy,” he said.Slamet added that the ministry would visit six locations to promote the digital literacy movement in partnership with Indonesian decacorn Gojek, local governments, local communities and members of the House of Representatives.The program was held to educate the public on staying safe in navigating the digital world and understanding prominent cases of online fraud that have surfaced in the past couple of years, Slamet noted. center_img The Communications and Information Ministry is collaborating with more than 100 communities in Indonesia to run digital literacy programs nationwide.The ministry’s program emphasizes individual capacity building in its program as it believes that each person should be on the front line in educating their communities about digital literacy.“The situation in Indonesia is very unique. While digital usage in Indonesia is among the highest in the world, with around 170 million internet users, digital literacy is still relatively low,”  the ministry’s director general of information applications, Samuel Abrijani Pangerapan, said in a written statement issued on Feb. 28.last_img read more

Ivory Coast records first coronavirus death: minister

first_imgPresident Alassane Ouattara declared a state of emergency last Monday to tackle the outbreak, imposing a curfew between 9:00 pm and 5:00 am, and shutting the country’s borders.He also banned movement in and out of the economic capital Abidjan, and closed bars, restaurants and schools.Neighboring Burkina Faso has recorded 222 cases of the virus and 12 deaths.Topics : Ivory Coast’s health minister announced the country’s first confirmed coronavirus death during a daily briefing Sunday on the outbreak there.Eugene Aka Aouele gave no details on the victim’s age or sex, but said the diagnosis had been made “post-mortem”.Aouele also announced another 25 cases of the virus had been recorded, bringing the official total in the country to 165.last_img

World short of six million nurses, WHO says

first_imgTopics : “Today, many nurses find themselves on the frontline in the battle against COVID-19,” he noted, adding that it was vital they “get the support they need to keep the world healthy.” The report said that there are just under 28 million nurses on the planet.In the five years leading up to 2018, the number grew by 4.7 million.”But this still leaves a global shortfall of 5.9 million,” the WHO said, pointing out that the greatest gaps were in poorer countries in Africa, southeast Asia, the Middle East and parts of South America. Shortages ‘exhaust workforce’ ICN chief executive Howard Catton told a virtual briefing that infection rates, medication errors and mortality rates “are all higher where there are too few nurses”.Furthermore, “shortages exhaust our current nursing workforce”, he added.In fighting the pandemic, Mary Watkins, who co-chaired the report for Nursing Now, called for urgent investment in virus tests for healthcare workers.”We have a very high proportion of healthcare workers not going to work because they’re afraid that they’ve been infected and that they can’t prove that they have not got the infection — or that they’ve had it, and they’re over it,” she said.Catton said that 23 nurses had died in Italy and cited figures suggesting that around 100 health workers had died around the world.Meanwhile he said there were reports of nine percent of health workers being infected in Italy and “we’re now hearing of rates of infections up to 14 percent in Spain”.He also cited reports of “completely unacceptable and reprehensible” attacks on health workers battling COVID-19, largely due to ignorance about their work, combined with countries not doing enough to protect them.”COVID is putting it into a very stark lens for us all,” he said, though he welcomed the growing appreciation in some countries of nurse’s work.Catton said that could help change perceptions of the value of nursing — which in turn might help make it a more attractive profession. The report urged countries to identify gaps in their nursing workforce and invest in nursing education, jobs and leadership.center_img Male recruitmentBeyond COVID-19, Watkins said many wealthier countries were not producing enough nurses to meet their own healthcare needs, and were therefore reliant on migration, exacerbating shortages in poorer countries.”Eighty percent of the world’s nurses only currently serve 50 percent of the world’s population,” she noted.Catton warned of risks that richer countries would rely on the Philippines and India to “supply the world with nurses”, which could lead to significant shortages in India.The experts said nursing remains female-dominated and needed to recruit more men.”There is clear evidence that where there are more men in any profession in the world, the pay and the terms and conditions improve,” Watkins said. As COVID-19 captures global headlines, the World Health Organization (WHO) warned Tuesday that the world needs nearly six million nurses.The UN’s health agency along with partners Nursing Now and the International Council of Nurses (ICN) underscored in a report the crucial role played by nurses, who make up more than half of all health workers worldwide.”Nurses are the backbone of any health system,” WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a statement.last_img read more

NasDem calls for fresh start in Criminal Code revision deliberations

first_imgTopics : “Therefore, the NasDem faction is lobbying other factions to carry out in-depth discussion on the Criminal Code bill,” he said.However, the House has yet to schedule a meeting on the bill.Members of the public have also raised concerns over the deliberation of problematic revisions to the KUHP.Read also: Jokowi bows to public pressure, calls for delay in passing Criminal Code bill into law The pro-government NasDem Party has approached other factions to agree on setting new footing for Criminal Code (KUHP) revisions, according to lawmaker Taufik Basari.Taufik, a member of House of Representatives Commission III overseeing legal affairs and the House Legislation Body (Baleg), told The Jakarta Post on Friday that NasDem wanted in-depth discussions over potential draconian articles in the amendment.However, most factions in the commission seemed to oppose such an idea.center_img Members of the National Alliance for Criminal Code Reforms have called on Commission III to turn a new page with regard to the revisions, stating that discussion should not merely continue from the previous term.Lawmakers who ended their terms in October were nearly finished deliberating the bill but public outcry and massive street protests halted the process. The protesters argued that the bills would threaten democracy and curtail civil rights.Sekar Surowijoyo of the Institute for Policy Research and Advocacy (ELSAM) told the press on Friday that “we still remember what happened in September last year […]. This bill was postponed because we took to the streets, but we can’t do that in a situation like this.”She added that the government and the commission’s chairs could refuse to start fresh and pass the bill without approval from other members, saying that the revised bill still included contentious provisions that would penalize activities in the personal domain, such as consensual sex and cohabitation among unmarried people.Read also: Indonesia’s controversial Criminal Code bill could soon be law. Here are the new crimesInstitute for Criminal Justice Reform (ICJR) executive director Erasmus Napitupulu, another member of the coalition, said the government and the House must reevaluate all articles in the bill.”A pandemic should not be used as an opportunity to pass a problematic bill,” he said.House deputy speaker Azis Syamsuddin, who is also a member of Commission III overseeing legal affairs, previously said the commission’s chairs had requested that the bills be passed after a week of deliberations.However, the commission’s chairman, Herman Herry, denied Azis’ statement.“We will invite all relevant stakeholders. Commission III will call all of them to a hearing,” the ruling Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) politician said.last_img read more