Don't expect to see De Niro or Pesci in Henrietta anytime soon, or any other casino types either.
Henrietta Not Willing to Roll the Dice on Casino Monday, March 10, 2014 Rochester, NY - I attended the most recent Henrietta Town Board meeting, last Wednesday, March 5, 2014. By evidence of the jam packed hearing room, and the 85 or so opponents of a Native American casino in Henrietta, one would conclude the project is dead. Days later, even the town board, and, Henrietta Supervisor Jack Moore had come out against the project. So, is a casino dead-on-arrival in Henrietta? Hardly. Read More ... Christopher J. Wilmot
Photo: Democrat & Chronicle
An Ignored Anniversary? Wednesday, March 5, 2014 In less than five months, Rochester will observe a notable and unfortunate anniversary. Fifty years ago this July, Rochester experienced mass unrest unlike any seen previously in our community. As one might expect, it prompted much soul-searching and left the community shaken and forever changed. But is Rochester – once called “Smugtown USA” – about to allow this anniversary to pass without any significant community effort to account for our progress – or our inexcusable lack thereof?Read More ... Aaron E. Wicks
At least these French idiots weren't nominated for any Oscars last night.
A Party Without a Narrative Thursday, February 27, 2014 A recent New York Times poll of Americans reveals a troubling sign for Democrats. Despite the fact that demographics favor them and despite the fact that voters are more likely to agree with their policies, voters are actually favoring the GOP in 2014. President Obama’s support has dwindled among independents, and even with John Boehner’s abysmal approval ratings, voters still give an edge to his party. Why is this?Read More ... Aaron E. Wicks - 1 opinion posted
A gun in the home is 22 times more likely to be used to kill or injure in a domestic homicide, suicide, or unintentional shooting than to be used in self-defense.
Want to Take a Bite Out of Crime in Rochester? Outlaw Handguns Monday, February 24, 2014 Rochester, NY - As this publication, and particularly, this journalist, has well documented, Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren's new administration is off to a rocky start. How might Mayor Warren take the focus off her rookie mistakes, and redeem herself with City residents? By heeding the compelling--and alarming--statistics about firearm deaths in the Flower City, and propose a city-wide ban on the possession of handguns. Read More ... Christopher J. Wilmot - 3 opinions posted
Watch the Latest Episode of the Smugtown Beacon Spotlight In the 2nd episode of our new TV show, the Smugtown Beacon Spotlight, we focus on the redevelopment of Downtown Rochester. Our guests are: Heidi Zimmer-Meyer, President, Rochester Downtown Development Corp.; and, Larry Glazer, CEO, Buckingham Properties. Our show airs on RCTV, Time Warner Cable channel 15 (only available in the City of Rochester). Read More ... Smugtown Beacon Producers
Monday, February 10, 2014 A recent column by a local observer urged Rochesterians to think about public education in a new way. Here’s a radical approach: what would it take, starting right now, to give every child in the city of Rochester a quality education? Would it take a million dollars? Ten million dollars? A hundred million dollars? But more difficult to answer is this question: once we put a price tag on it, what excuse will we have not to get the job done?
Local Boy Makes Good: The late Philip Seymour Hoffman. No circumstances of his untimely passing can tarnish what he meant to fim lovers, and Rochesterians (photo: raindance.org).
To Honor Philip Seymour Hoffman: A True Cinematic and Stage Artist, of the Highest Level Thursday, February 6, 2014 Rochester, NY - I had the pleasure of meeting Philip Seymour Hoffman three times, beginning in the mid-to-late 1990's. I can't claim I really knew the man, but as a filmmaker and enthusiast, I can certainly attempt to honor this great man by highly recommending four of his lesser known films. Lesser known, but not lesser films. You be the judge. Read More ... Christopher J. Wilmot - 2 opinions posted
Bill Johnson and the anti-casino crowd: Are they against just casinos, or do they have the integrity to also oppose the Lottery and OTB? (photo: D&C).
Local Decisions and Traditions that Do Not Make a Whole Lot of Sense Monday, February 3, 2014 Rochester, NY - From strange Port of Rochester redevelopement plans, to the blinders that suburban residents in Monroe County don so that they can block out the inevitable demise of the City of Rochester, Monroe County sure has some odd traditions, attitudes, and opinions about what exactly makes a good community. Inside, my take on what to expect (as well as what won't happen) locally in 2014. Read More ... Christopher J. Wilmot - 7 opinions posted
New-old Mon. Co. Parks Dir. Larry Staub: Did he get a tip the State Comptrollers investigation of the Tindale contract came back favorable?
What Lovely Warren and Chris Christie Have in Common Monday, January 20, 2014 Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie seem to be entirely different political characters. They do not share a common, race, gender, political party, office, ideology or personal style. So what do they have in common? They are both likely to be underestimated by Democrats – and the cost of that underestimation could be a big problem for the party.Read More ... Aaron E. Wicks
The Hysteria Around Rochester's New Mayor Wednesday, January 15, 2014 In one of the sure signs of an imminent Armaggedon, one Smugtown Beacon writer finds common ground with… Bob Lonsberry? The Rochester area’s media iconoclast, Lonsberry has suggested something few local reporters are likely to heed: end the crazed, “ugly” coverage of Mayor Lovely Warren, and for the sake of all of us, take a deep breath.Read More ... Aaron E. Wicks - 2 opinions posted
"Didn't she almost have it all?" No, this isn't Mayor Warren and her uncle. Why should the newly minted mayor of the Flower City begin her first term with charges of nepotism?
The Body Guard: Does Mayor Warren Really Need One? City Ethics Board to Decide Tuesday, January 14, 2014 Rochester, NY - Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren will now face an ethics probe approved by City Council yesterday. The probe is not about Warren's body guard, her uncle, driving 97 mph on the N.Y. State Thruway. The probe is to determine if she violated ethics laws by hiring her uncle, Reggie Hill, in the first place. Can she recover politically from a very rough start in her new office at City Hall? Read More ... Christopher J. Wilmot - 1 opinion posted
Monroe County Parks Director Larry Staub. During a State audit of Tindale's management of county golf courses, Staub will be county GOP exec. director & County Legislator, perhaps against the wishes of the Perinton Republican Committee (photo: Twitter).
Larry Staub to Resign County Parks; Will Take Mike Barker's County Lej Seat Monday, January 13, 2014 Rochester, NY - Anonymous yet reliable sources have informed the Smugtown Beacon that allegedly, 'the fix is in' to have current County Parks Director Larry Staub fill the vacancy in the Monroe County Legislature left by Mike Barker. This story is all the more interesting given the fact the State Comptrollers office is auditing a contract between the County and Jack Tindale, Inc., as well as allegations the Perinton Republican Committee wasn't consulted about Staub's possible appointment. Is this merely sour grapes, or more heavy handedness on the part of the local GOP? Read More ... Christopher J. Wilmot - 1 opinion posted
Monday, January 27, 2014 With recent polls showing voters in an historically sour mood toward elected officials, there is great uncertainty about the 2014 political season. Will New Yorkers express their anger by ousting their Members of Congress or their state legislators or will these polls simply translate into disengagement and low turnout?
A too common scene in Greater Rochester: Packing up the moving van for Texas, or the Carolinas, or Florida, or somewhere else with much lower property and school taxes (photo: Colgate.edu)
N.Y. State has Highest Out-Migration of Any State in Nation Thursday, January 9, 2014 Rochester, NY - Why do so many residents of Western New York, and New York State in general, leave for the better weather and buisness climes of Texas and Florida? High, high, and higher property, school, and busniess taxes and regulations. However, Governor Andrew Cuomo might have a solution. Read More ... Christopher J. Wilmot - 1 opinion posted
Toronto Argo's vs. Montreal Alouettes: Passing is everything in the CFL (photo: Montreal Gazette)
Why the Canadian Football League is More Entertaining than is the NFL Saturday, February 22, 2014 Rochester, NY - I love the New York Giants. My Dad was such a big fan--as was his Dad--I believe I really had no choice in the matter but to become a Giants fan. You see, it's probably in my DNA. But what pro football league do I like best? No contest: The Canadian Football League (CFL). I know it's treasonous to admit this, and perhaps I'll be deported to the next Hamilton Tiger Cats game, but if you love pro football, read on. Read More ... Christopher J. Wilmot
What is the Purpose of Prison? Wednesday, February 19, 2014 A recent proposal by Governor Andrew Cuomo to promote college degrees among New York’s incarcerated population drew immediate and harsh rebukes from the world of social media. While not an objective measure of public sentiment, it does suggest that there is a deep resistance to investing in people who are incarcerated. This begs the question: why do we lock people up – and why do Americans generally lock up so many more people than any other people on earth? Read More ... Aaron E. Wicks - 1 opinion posted
Jerry Seinfeld: Recently on CNN, Seinfeld had the audacity to suggest that he has the right to invite on his web series any comic he finds funny (photo: Wikipedia).
In Defense of Jerry Seinfeld and Non-PC Humor Saturday, February 15, 2014 Rochester, NY - Should comedian Jerry Seinfeld be allowed to pick any comic he wants to appear on his web series, irrespective of race, ethnicity or gender? I've already made up my mind: You decide. Read More ... Christopher J. Wilmot