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Monthly Newsletter
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Best wishes for a happy and healthy 2022!
In This Issue

President's Report

State Committee Report

2022 Will Be a Busy Year for Three Parks

Three Parks to Our Community: Help Pass the NY Health Act

Endorsement Vote Results: NY State Senate and Assembly

Continuing: Endorsement Votes for NY State-wide and Other Offices: What You Need to Know

Goodbye Mr. Jefferson
STAY HEALTHY!
STAY SAFE!
For the latest official information from NYC
on the coronavirus, click here
or text COVID
to 692-692
To see the percentage of the residents in our area who have been vaccinated, click here. (data updated daily)
ONLINE CLUB MEETING
Wednesday, January 12, 2021, at 8:00 pm

June 2022 Democratic Primary Endorsements

Candidates for

NY State Governor

NY State Lt. Governor

NY State Attorney General

NY State Comptroller

An online endorsement vote will follow. Eligible voters will find instructions and a voting schedule here.
Join the meeting from your computer, tablet or smartphone. 

Click here

You may also either click on the link below or paste it
into your browser:
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84250724081?pwd=RlFSSDNOTGwyN1RLOGdyeUFmamU4dz09
If you are asked for a PASSWORD, enter:
097134
You may also join by using your phone to dial in.
Meeting ID: 842 5072 4081
AGENDA
7:45--8:00 pm: Log On / Dial in
8:00 pm: Call to Order
Speakers: Candidates for NYS Governor
Questions and Answers
Speakers: Candidates for NYS Lt. Governor
Questions and Answers
Speakers: Candidates for NYS Attorney General
Questions and Answers
Speakers: Candidates for NYS Comptroller
Questions and Answers
Adjourn
January 6 Vigil for Democracy with Upper West Side MoveOn/Indivisible
When
Thursday, January 6
4:30 – 5:30pm EST
Where
Verdi Square
(73rd Street and Broadway)
Meet Three Parks friends at the north end of Verdi Square (73rd Street).
Gather with the UWS MoveOn/Indivisible Action Group at Verdi Square [73rd/Bway] for a Vigil in somber remembrance of the tragic day of Jan 6 and a call to action to defend our democracy. Several neighborhood faith leaders will be speaking, as we hold our signs and our candles (led lights), sing a new song, "Battle Hymn for Democracy" together, and share of our feelings and thoughts from 4:30-5:30pm. We'll end with a call to action. We will be socially distanced and with proper masks to keep us all safe - please respect this.

It’s been nearly one year since armed right-wing militants attacked our Capitol and tried to overturn the results of the 2020 election. Since that time the same extremist politicians who incited the attack have tried to block the investigation into the violence, state legislators have passed one anti-voter bill after another, local election officials have faced death threats, and the potential for future election sabotage has only grown.

We must not forget what happened -- and we must demand action from our leaders to prevent another attack on our democracy.
President’s Report
By Lorraine Zamora

It’s 2022. Thank goodness 2021 is over. 

Last year started with an insurrection on the U.S. Capitol. Today, over 700 people have been charged with a connection to the riot. The coronavirus pandemic continued to impact nearly every aspect of our lives, and has left us under the cloud of the omicron variant. The climate crisis took a catastrophic toll across the entire globe. And some 19 states passed 34 laws that will make it harder to vote in future elections.

Many days in 2021 were worrisome and endless, but somehow the year went by quickly.  I counted my blessings: family, friends, good health—and Three Parks! More than ever, Three Parks sustained me in its efforts to make the Upper West Side a more welcoming, inclusive and equitable place to live.

The Upper West Side is a remarkably diverse but close-knit community of people who persist in electing candidates with the highest ideals to public office. Three Parks exists to bring those people together who believe in a more progressive way of life and help elect candidates who support their values. 

State Committee Report
By Daniel Marks Cohen

Without question, 2021 was an eventful political year: the end of the Trump administration, the attempted coup on January 6, the incoming Joe Biden administration, and history being made with the first woman Vice President in Kamala Harris, who is also the first VP of biracial Black and Asian descent. COVID waxed and waned and now waxes again. The resignation of Governor Andrew Cuomo led to the elevation of Kathy Hochul as the first woman Governor of New York and the selection of our former State Senator Brian Benjamin as Lt. Governor, and now we close out the year with the election of Eric Adams as the second Black Mayor in the City’s history. Any one of these items would be a major event; all of them together is overwhelming.

Yet time and politics march on: five members of the NYS Assembly in Manhattan have announced their departure. Some are moving on due to being elected to a new office, such as Carmen De La Rosa in the 72nd AD in Washington Heights who was elected to the City Council seat vacated by the term-limited Ydanis Rodriguez, or being appointed to another office, such as East Harlem’s Robert Rodriguez in the 68th AD, who is becoming NYS Secretary of State. Others felt it was time to move on: after 50 years, Dick Gottfried called it quits in Chelsea/Midtown’s 75th AD, and similarly, Dan Quart in the East Side’s 73rd AD did the same (albeit with a shorter decade-long tenure in office), and lastly, with ambition calling, Yuh-Line Niou from Chinatown/Lower East Side in the 65th AD decided the time was right to challenge Brian Kavanagh in the 26th State Senate district. 

2022 Will Be a Busy Year for Three Parks. Stay Informed With This Newsletter!
The year ahead, with major statewide elections and crucial congressional Midterms, is going to be full of opportunities for political activism for all Three Parks members. Whatever kind of campaigning suits you best -- sidewalk tabling, petitioning, postcard writing, canvassing -- there will be plenty to do this year. We're making plans now, and the best way to stay informed is to read this newsletter, check our website at threeparksdems.org, and watch for email alerts from Three Parks.
Newsletter Readership: Going Up! Upper West Side Democrats are energized as the 2022 Midterms get closer. How can we tell? One way is by the readership of this newsletter. Since September our readership has increased by more than 40%, based on the number of individuals who open each issue.
Three Parks to Our Community: Help Pass the NY Health Act!
Three Parks members and friends gather on Broadway on Dec. 4 to collect signatures on postcards urging NYS legislators to pass the NY Health Act. In two afternoons more than 270 signatures were collected and hundreds of flyers were distributed.
The club's new video explains all about the NY Health Act. See it here.
The New York Health Act is the bill that could finally bring the benefits of Medicare to New Yorkers of all ages. The Act already has enough co-sponsors to pass both houses of the NY state legislature, but the leadership must bring it to a vote. It is urgent to pass the bill now, before the balance of power shifts in Washington.

Three Parks is working to help pass the Act by gathering signatures from local residents on postcards to be sent to state legislators and by publicizing the Act to our community..
Endorsement Vote Results: NY State Senate and Assembly

Click here to see the results of the Dec. 8 TPID endorsement vote for candidates running in the June 2022 Democratic primary election.

The club voted to endorse Cleare Cordell for State Senate District 30, Robert Jackson for State Senate District 31, and Daniel O'Donnell for State Assembly District 69. We will petition to put them on the ballot, and we will campaign for them.
Continuing: Endorsement Votes
for NY State-wide and Other Offices
What You Need to Know

In the early months of 2022, Three Parks is holding endorsement votes for candidates for NYS Governor, NYS Attorney General, US Congress, and other offices that are up for election in 2022. The club will campaign for endorsed candidates in the June 2022 Democratic Primary.

Candidates for each office will be invited to speak at our regular club meetings, currently held via Zoom. Here is the tentative schedule.

Schedule of Candidates / Offices

January 12
NYS Governor, NYS Lt. Governor,
NYS Attorney General, NYS Comptroller

(Note: Club meeting earlier scheduled for January 26 has been cancelled.)

February 9
US Congress, Judges, Judicial Delegates
Democratic State Committee

March 9
Three Parks Board
Check the Endorsement Meeting Schedules page on the Three Parks website and your email for any schedule changes.
At each club meeting, each candidate will make brief remarks and take questions. 

Following each meeting, eligible voters may vote electronically during a set time period. Instructions and schedules for voting electronically will be posted on the Endorsement Voting Procedures page of the Three Parks website. 
Make Sure You Are Eligible to Vote!

In order to vote to endorse candidates and for the Board and officers, you must be a member of Three Parks Independent Democrats. Also, your dues must be current for the year in which the endorsement vote is held. In addition, you must have attended, as a member, at least one Club meeting in the six months prior to the endorsement vote. For new members, membership becomes effective one month after dues payment. For more information, click here.
Goodbye, Mr. Jefferson
By Steve Max
01/02/2022

Personally speaking, it was with considerable sadness, and not a little embarrassment for our City, that I read in November 2021 of the removal of Thomas Jefferson’s statue from the New York City Council Chamber. Jefferson owned slaves - end of story, said the Council in a unanimous vote. But is it the end of the story? Do we judge Jefferson by what he did within the context of his own times, or by what have evolved into today’s standards, an evolution which Jefferson himself helped put into motion? 

Certainly Jefferson conformed to the practices of his class and the social environment of which he was a product. He was born into the planter class and inherited a large plantation with human property. He married a planter’s daughter and she inherited more property. He lived the life of a slave owner and died in such debt that even if he had wished to free his slaves, (which is unknown,) the laws of the State required that all his property, land and home belonged to his creditors. He conducted a life-long sexual relationship with Sally Hemings, the exact nature of which historians debate to this day.1

After gracing the chamber for 187 years, the Jefferson statue was crated up and moved to a museum.2 Uriah Phillips Levy, who had suffered denied promotions and other anti-Semitic indignities during his career as a US naval officer,3 had donated the statue in 1837 to honor Jefferson’s stand on religious liberty as embodied in the Virginia Act Establishing Religious Freedom (1786.)4 Indeed, Jefferson’s University of Virginia admitted Jews who were barred from almost every other school.

Few people know that Jefferson attempted, but failed, to get a scathing indictment of slavery into the Declaration of Independence. In the listing of grievances against the king, Jefferson included this:

“He [King George III] has waged cruel war against human nature itself, violating its most sacred rights of life and liberty in the persons of a distant people who never offended him, captivating & carrying them into slavery in another hemisphere or to incur miserable death in their transportation thither. This piratical warfare, the opprobrium of infidel powers, is the warfare of the Christian King of Great Britain. Determined to keep open a market where Men should be bought & sold, he has prostituted his negative for suppressing every legislative attempt to prohibit or restrain this execrable commerce.”5 

The Southerners at the Congress took it out, but had it remained, we can imagine what a different place the document would have had in history.


1 See “Thomas Jefferson an Intimate History” https://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Jefferson-Intimate-Fawn-Brodie/dp/0393338339  
2 The NY Historical Society, at least for now.
 Upcoming Meetings
Wednesday, Jan. 12, 8:00 PM
Three Parks Club Meeting

Wednesday, Jan. 26, 8:00 PM
Three Parks Board Meeting (Note re-scheduling to regular start time)

Wednesday, Feb. 9, 8:00 PM
Three Parks Club Meeting
Wednesday, Feb. 23. 8:00 PM
Three Parks Board Meeting

Wednesday, Mar. 9, 8:00 PM
Three Parks Club Meeting

Wednesday, Mar. 23. 8:00 PM
Three Parks Board Meeting
Don't Miss Out!
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The opinions expressed in this newsletter are those of the authors of the articles and are not necessarily representative of Three Parks.
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