By DON GLYNN
Niagara Gazette — It was described as one of the biggest protests at the state Capital in years.
The crowd, estimated at upward of 5,000, included a number of busloads from the Buffalo Niagara area irate about New York’s new gun control law. Earlier, rally organizers were confident that 10,000 would attend from across the state.
While the majority of state lawmakers approved the measure it seemed that everyone there wanted to vent their anger at Gov. Andrew Cuomo. As one reporter accurately noted, many of the protestors were “dressed in hunting outfits.”
The nation’s cherished “Freedom of Speech” right also was clearly evident in the chanting ranging from “Cuomo Must Go!” to “We’ll Never Comply.”
As expected, some of the sign wavers crossed the line. Putting the governor in the same boat with “Stalin” and “Hitler” is a stretch, most people surely agree. Even a minister got carried away with his acid remarks that he managed to work into the invocation, saying he was reading Cuomo “the last rites of his political career,” an obvious reference to the governor’s possible entry into the 2016 presidential race.
One of the more moderate rally speakers was Assemblyman John Ceretto who called for repealing the New York SAFE Act. “We need to repeal this bill and replace it with sound legislation that does more to improve the safety of our communities, while not stripping away the rights of the law-abiding gun owners,” the lawmaker added.
OFF THE PRESS: “Search for the Ultimate Energy Source: A History of the U.S. Fusion Energy Program,” by Stephen O. Dean (Springer Publications, 262 pages, hardcover, 2013) looks at the concepts behind fusion power, its development as dictated by U.S. government policies, and its potential.
A Niagara Falls native, Dean graduated from the former Bishop Duffy High School (1954).
He received a B.S. in physics at Boston College (1960), a degree in nuclear engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1962) and a Ph.D. in physics at the University of Maryland. In the late 1970s, he formed Fusion associates,a nonprofit research and educational foundation now based in Gaithersburg, Md. Dean’s sister, Patricia Roberts, is a Lewiston resident.
ACROSS THE BORDER: Canadians always look forward to their “spring break” although in recent years it seems some can’t even decide when it is. This year Ontario students will be off from March 11 to March 15 which should swell the traffic at the international bridges and at shopping malls on this side.
DOUBLE FEAST: Again this year, some area churches and community organizations will observe the feast days of St. Patrick and St. Joseph on the same day, March 17.
The local St. Patrick’s Day celebration will include a 5 p.m. party at the Conference Center Niagara Falls. That same day, the St. Joseph’s Table, named for the beloved saint among Italian-Americans, will be held about 12:30 p.m. at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, 27th Street and Independence Avenue, the worship site of Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph, 1413 Pine Ave. In the Roman Catholic faith, the feast of St. Joseph is traditionally celebrated March 19.
BOOK A FLIGHT!: Overheard in a local drugstore: “If you like your passport picture, you probably need the trip” — a customer giving free advice to his friend waiting in line.Contact reporter Don Glynn at 282-2311, ext. 2246