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Honorable Choices

Trust is an interesting word.  Among other meanings, it infers a confidence or reliability in a person other than oneself to ensure some future act or acts.  A resting of the mind on the integrity, veracity and justice of another.  Last week's issue was so full of vitriolic letters against virtually, well, everything.  I had to take a step back and look at this years' election and its meaning to the future of East Hampton Town in more simpler terms.  Twenty-five years ago this month, during a brief 3 month visit to beautiful Parris Island, South Carolina, the subjects of trust, honor and loyalty came up on more than a few occasions.  Superimposing those morals on our elected officials of today reveals what I and many other residents have suspected all along.  They fit.  We can trust the future of East Hampton Town more with Cathy Lester as Supervisor than with Jay Schneidermann as Supervisor.  We can be assured that when hard decisions need to be made for our Town, Supervisor Cathy Lester, Councilman Pete Hammerle and Lisa Grenci will make courageous and honorable choices.  I don't have that same confidence in Mr. Schneidermann and his GOP/Green (that even looks weird in print) curmudgeons.  Lastly, I know for a fact that Cathy's loyalty is undeniably and unquestioningly for East Hampton Town in every regard.  Making hard choices is part of the job.  The choices made to preserve land for our children is one of many I happen to support.  But land is not free.  We should ask ourselves if the land preserved in the last several years, literally thousands of acres, would have been preserved if Duryea cronies like Tom Knobel and Nancy McCaffrey were successful over the past several elections. Or would our Town's future more likely resemble the direction being taken in Southampton Town?  It's so sad to see what is happening to Water Mill.  Remember the GOP effort only 2 years ago to reduce the level of environmental review?
     To me, open vistas and pastoral settings with rolling hills to enjoy are part of what makes East Hampton one of America's special places.  Keeping it that way is the challenge.  It would be easy to allow a strip mall, like Water Mill and Patchogue, or fast food and super-stores like Southampton and Riverhead.  But we choose to say no to these types of developers more than we say yes because of the vision of our Democratic elected officials and our residents collective vision of what we want our Town to resemble.  So don't fall for all the rhetoric of the nasty and cantankerous GOP letterwriters.  You know who will work hard for us.  You know who will keep East Hampton a great place to live.  They've been doing it all along.  Vote Democratic.  It's important.
Semper fi,
Barry W. Leach
P.S.  The East Hampton Town Democratic and Trustee platform can be read in its entirety at  See what's been promised, what's been delivered, and where we go from here.