Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXIV, No. 37
 
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
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Independent Candidate for Congress Supports Campaign Finance Reform

Kenneth J. Cody
Lawrence Township

Stealing of Lawn Signs Supporting Holt Reported by Resident and PCDO President

(2 Letters)

Thanks from “Yes We Can! Food Drives” for Princeton Community’s 9/11 Donations

Carol A. Calamoneri
Co-coordinator, “Yes We Can!”
Windermere Drive


Independent Candidate for Congress Supports Campaign Finance Reform

To the Editor:

My name is Kenneth J. Cody and I am running for Congress as an Independent candidate in New Jersey’s 12th Congressional District for the seat currently held by Representative Rush Holt. I have been living in this district all of my life, working in Princeton for the last ten years. It has been great meeting residents all across the region and hearing from them on what needs to be done for New Jersey and the nation. Many citizens feel that the entire Congress is broken and needs to be fixed. They are correct. Nationally, surveys show that Congress’ approval ratings are as low as 21 percent. The first step in changing that number is supporting bi-partisanship. If elected I would be eager to work with both Democrats and Republicans equally and fairly. The ideas are out there and now is the time to put our heads together. With a struggling economy, a high unemployment rate, and a war that has no end in Afghanistan, now is the time to put aside party loyalty and party-line voting. Of course it will take some sacrifices by all parties but it is the first step to an efficient House of Representatives.

Another issue that has many people concerned is the amount of money being wasted in political campaigning. I am a firm believer in stronger campaign finance reform. Nationwide over $725 million dollars has been raised for candidates running for Congress. We need to put a stop to this. As the only candidate in this race who will not accept any monetary contributions, I want to send a message to Washington that elections can be won without breaking the bank. I would rather see the money go to a charity working on a cure for illnesses or to help the homeless.

My campaign is based on these three words — truth, vision and hope. I encourage you to take a look at my website (http://cody-for-congress.tripod.com) to learn more.

Kenneth J. Cody
Lawrence Township

Stealing of Lawn Signs Supporting Holt Reported by Resident and PCDO President

To the Editor:

I am writing to express not only my personal distress, but my dismay as president of the Princeton Community Democratic Organization at the latest manifestation of decline in the civility of political discourse in our community. My wife and I support our Congressman Rush Holt’s bid for reelection, and have displayed a lawn sign expressing our support over the last couple of months. On a regular, almost nightly, basis, our sign, and others in our neighborhood, are vandalized or stolen. This vandalism represents an unseemly disrespect for private property and a disturbing rejection of the fundamental constitutional value of free speech on the part of the Republican operatives who perpetrate this repeated juvenile mischief. I realize that Congressman Holt’s opponent cannot be held responsible for the behavior of all his supporters, but I do expect him to energetically denounce their betrayal of the core American values that the Republican Party claims to hold dear. I will look for his response in this publication in the coming weeks — I and the voters of Princeton will gauge his character and commitment to constructive political engagement by his willingness to take a public stand on this issue.

David E. Cohen
Terhune Road


To the editor:

For the second time in as many weeks I woke up to find my “Rush Holt for Congress” signs missing from where I had put them, right in front of my house. The first time the entire signs were stolen, this time the thief (or thieves) left me the skeletal metal frames and removed the cardboard messages from them. Now it looks as though my family and I are endorsing a phantom for Congress. These acts by individuals who oppose Congressman Holt’s candidacy and presumably support Mr. Sipprelle’s weaken our democracy by making the campaign and election process even more expensive and rancorous than it already was. Moreover, these acts attempt to hide the truth: that the majority of Congressman Holt’s constituents are grateful for his selfless service. I would like to hear Mr. Sipprelle, as a candidate for the United States Congress, denounce these criminal acts.

Carol Golden
Snowden Lane

Thanks from “Yes We Can! Food Drives” for Princeton Community’s 9/11 Donations

To the Editor:

Over a year ago, heeding a call to community service, a small group of local people formed a non-sectarian, non-political volunteer group to conduct food drives at local venues in the Princeton area. We chose the Crisis Ministry Food Pantry in Trenton, another non-sectarian, non-profit organization with a pantry also located at the Nassau Presbyterian Church in Princeton as the recipient of our collections. Now, a year later, we are supplying them with over 10 percent of their food. To date, we have collected over 95,000 pounds of food, serving over 3,000 individuals a month, including 1,000 children.

On 9/11, the National Day of Service, we held drives at McCaffrey’s Market in Princeton, the Pennington Market, and the West Windsor Farmer’s Market. At the end of the day, as I was thanking my group of volunteers at Princeton McCaffrey’s, I was struck by the generosity, not only of the volunteers for their time on the sunny somber day, but also by the generosity of the people who contributed anything from one box or can to several bags of groceries for this cause. In Princeton alone, we collected over 3,000 pounds of groceries in five hours, plus $348 in cash donations in spite of an economically unstable economy, with too many of us wondering how we will pay the utility increases, taxes, transportation hikes, or even buy the groceries for our own families.

Throughout the drives, some people have stopped to tell us their stories. One that stays with me is the woman who came up with several bags to donate and said that a year ago, when her husband lost his job, and they had lost their house in Princeton to foreclosure, they got together all their resources just to stay renting in the area so their son’s schooling would not be interrupted. Their next step was going to be to look for aid to put food on the table, when happily her husband found employment.

Since we started our food drives, many churches, synagogues, schools, clubs and other groups in our area have followed the trend — it really does take a village. Thank you Princeton Community. For more information on our food drives, the Crisis Ministry, or to volunteer, go to www.yeswecanfooddrives.org.

Carol A. Calamoneri
Co-coordinator, “Yes We Can!”
Windermere Drive

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