Niagara Gazette

Opinion

May 9, 2014

GUEST VIEW: Has Senator Maziarz gone too far?

Niagara Gazette — Niagara Falls is an economically challenged city. It’s a result of the loss of industry we’ve experienced over the last several decades, this is no secret. But most of us that live here agree: Our city is improving every day and it finally appears to be on the rise. Never in my lifetime have I witnessed the number of economic development projects — with the accompanying growth in tourism activity — and enthusiasm encompassing Niagara Falls.

Last year, Niagara Falls saw two new elected officials, U.S. Congressman Brian Higgins and State Sen. George Maziarz, begin representing our city — and both taking very different approaches in so doing.

While our congressman rushed to the front lines to fight for Niagara Falls since day one, we certainly can not say the same things about Senator Maziarz. In fact, Maziarz, who has served nearly two decades as state senator, appears to believe that slamming our city every chance he gets will help lure developers and promote job creation and revitalization upon our city.

I know so many who believe that a powerful career politician like Maziarz could actually be a champion for Niagara Falls, yet he chooses to use us as the punch line to his terrible joke. Always quick to take a shot at us or make a dig at our low-income residents or aging infrastructure.

A prime example of this was his April 10 appearance on LCTV Channel 22. Maziarz launched a mean-spirited and needless attack on Niagara Falls’ impoverished community. While being interviewed on television, our senator complained that there was a line of “poor people waiting outside a human service agency on 19th and Walnut for free food.” He likened the image to a depression era photograph. Worse yet, our state senator claimed that this was a sad state of affairs for Niagara Falls to have families in need of some assistance. These comments were deplorable for an elected representative to make about his constituents. Maybe this is a depression type image from Maziarz’s ivory tower.

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