Niagara Gazette

June 13, 2013

GLYNN: Snyder defends Senecas' stand on compact

By DON GLYNN don.glynn@niagara-gazette.com
Niagara Gazette

Niagara Gazette — Seneca Nation President Barry E. Snyder Sr. isn’t always readily available to the media for comment on Gov. Andew Cuomo’s latest threat to allow non-Indian gambling casinos in Western New York.

That doesn’t mean, however, that Snyder is dodging the bullet. In fact, he has been ripping into the state chief executive a number of times in the tribal nation’s official newsletter, citing how the state has violated terms of the original compact. Snyder also has accused Cuomo of choosing “a path of playground bullying tactics rather than one of maturity, dignity and mutual respect.”

He notes that the governor appears to be inconsistent in defense of his position. On one hand, Cuomo lauds job creation and stability throughout the state and yet, at the same time, he threatens the economic security of thousands of hard working families employed by the nation or its vendors at the three Indian casinos, in Niagara Falls, Buffalo and Salamanca.

Snyder has repeatedly cited the fact that the state has violated the compact. Quoting the signed document, Snyder says that if “the state breaches exclusivity, the nation’s obligation to make exclusivity payments as well as the state’s right to receive them shall cease immediately.” Instead of the state fulfilling its end of the bargain, Snyder point out, the governor fails to show leadership[ on the issue and, as a result, has brought the cities of Niagara Falls and Salamanca to the brink of financial ruin. The Seneca Nation president added: “We’ve acted in good faith and negotiated diplomatically but we continue to experience the childish antics of the state’s top leader and his advisors.”

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OLD GLORY: A reminder, Flag Day is Friday, time to share in the patriotic spirit.

On a personal note, it always conjures up those memorable lyrics from Johnny Cash’s “Ragged Old Flag.”  

 Part of that stirring message:

“On Flanders Field in World War 1, She got a big hole from a Bertha Gun, She turned blood red in World War 11, She hung limp, and low, a time or two. She was in Korea, Vietnam, She went where she was sent by her Uncle Sam... She’s getting thred bare, and she’s wearin’ thin, But she’s in good shape for the shape she’s in. Cause she’s been through the fire before and I believe she can take a whole lot more.”

Today, of course, we could add Afghanistan, Iraq, and other war-torn countries. And how could this generation ever forget that scene on 9-11, the Stars and Stripes standing in the rubble of the World Trade Center? 

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SPECIAL TRIBUTE: A memorial Mass for the Rev. Thomas Moore, OSFS, 74, a Niagara Falls native and priest for 47 years, will be held at 10 a.m. today at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, Independence Avenue and 27th Street. Father Moore, ordained to the priesthood in 1966 in France, was a graduate of Bishop Duffy High School (1956) and the Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C.

He served in wide ranging capacities with the Order of St. Francis de Sales including as a teacher, in parish ministry and as a hospital chaplain.

He was on assignment in Port-Au-Prince, Haiti, in January 2010 when that area was devastated by an earthquake. Listed as missing, he was found safe several days later. A spokesman for the religious order said at the time: “God must have spared his life so he may continue to help the people of Haiti in this time of crisis.”

In a blog he wrote a few months before his death (May 29, 2013), Father Moore expressed his feelings about dealing with pancreatic cancer: “I wish it were better news but frankly, it’s okay with me. I love god and God loves me. I’m fine with God. It’s getting things done here on earth before I leave that makes me weak. But I know that will turn out okay, according to God’s plan.”   

What a powerful message as he approached death ... teaching a valuable lesson to the living.

Contact reporter Don Glynn at 282-2311, ext. 2259.