The City of Troy, New York, "Where Henry Hudson Turned Around."

Friday, September 04, 2015


OK, everyone in your seats. Settle down and open your texts to page 7

First, we are pleased to announce that August, our first month back, saw 7,342 unique visitors. So, thanks to everyone that stopped by. We will have a special gift for our 8,000th visitor.

On the other hand, its not like we are surprised by our success. The Troy Polloi has been called, "The smartest political site, maybe ever," - "Brilliant, insightful, possibly the blueprint for a new civilization," - "A blog."*

Now, street memorials. We've all seen them, either in news reports or in person. Candles, pictures and ball caps on the sidewalks. Crosses planted along the roadsides and highways. Come to think of it, it looks like an urban and rural phenomenon, not yet de rigueur in the 'burbs.

The Troy City is contemplating legislation to prohibit such memorials. We now know it was yanked off the agenda at last night's meeting.

First, would such legislation even be necessary. We do have a City Code.

Section 251-3 states:

"It shall be unlawful for any person to place or maintain, or permit to be placed or maintained, upon the street or sidewalk opposite to any lot, store or building owned or occupied by him/her, in whole or in part, or upon any street in the City, any article, thing, case, box, fence, counter or structure, which shall in any manner encumber or obstruct such street or sidewalk or in any way impede, restrict or interrupt the full and free use thereof, except as otherwise expressly provided in this chapter." 

It's unlawful to place or maintain any article, things case, box, fence, counter.... Couldn't they leave it at things? Aren't the other items listed just things? Anyway, this looks like it would authorize the removal of any such sidewalk memorial, making further legislation unnecessary.

Is it too much of a stretch to think any such legislation is unnecessary and simply pandering? We know that many feel that the Faison memorial is a slap in the face to the police. But would the Council contemplate such legislation simply as a reaction to the Faison memorial? Lets take a peek at what they may have thought.

On Wed, Sep 2, 2015 at 8:18 AM, lynn kopka > wrote:
Ken - you noted that the city council should do better with the memorial legislation. can you please send the suggested revisions so they may be incorporated? many thanks. Lynn
From: Ken Zalewski
Sent: Sep 2, 2015 8:29 AM
To: lynn kopka
Cc: city council , "Ian.Silverman" , "John.Tedesco"
Subject: Re: memorial legislation
I'll propose amendments on the floor.
On Wed, Sep 2, 2015 at 8:35 AM, lynn kopka  wrote:
we need  be sure that such amendments are legal and enforceable so please get them to ian. many thanks
From: Ken Zalewski
Sent: Sep 2, 2015 8:52 AM
To: lynn kopka
Cc: city council , "Ian.Silverman" , "John.Tedesco"
Subject: Re: memorial legislation

That's the problem with rushing legislation, Lynn.  Impulsive legislation always has problems, with both the verbiage itself, and with public reaction.  Again, I'll reference the SAFE Act.
There are better ways to support our police officers.  Mike and I tied a blue ribbon around a tree in our front yard last week.  It's our own way of showing solidarity with TroyPD.
I don't have the time to formulate the proper verbiage yet.  Hopefully, I'll have it ready for the meeting on Thursday.
On Sep 2, 2015, at 9:22 AM, lynn kopka  wrote:
we worked extensively with the NYCOM attorneys. Again, if you have identified problems with the memorial legislation, please send the suggestions. Supporting the police and regulating memorials seem to be two different issues.

From: James Gordon []
Sent: Wednesday, September 02, 2015 9:41 AM
To: Lynn M. Kopka
Cc: Ken Zalewski; city council; Ian.Silverman; John.Tedesco
Subject: Re: memorial legislation
Being a part of this process I can say I am comfortable with what the result is. We know the issue and we understand the objective. The legislation addresses the concerns and does so in a respectful manner and within the confines of Constitutional law. We should pass this as is and move on. 
Jim Gordon
Councilman, Dist. 1 
Rather disturbing, no? Lynn and Ken seem to be reluctant yet supportive. Kopka does point out the difference between supporting the police and legislation on street memorials. Ken, remarkably, admits that the legislation is a sham and meant not so much to regulate conduct but to support the police. Gordon is gung ho! Lets do this thang.
No matter what you think, government cannot pass legislation designed shut down expression, even under the guise of a content-neutral law. This e-mail exchange establishes the motivation behind the legislation and its best that it was withdrawn.
Then there's the law of unintended consequences. We may feel a degree of satisfaction when a would-be cop killer's memorial is taken done. Our reaction when a memorial to a child, one adorned with teddy bears or other symbols of innocence, is removed is going to be quite different.
*See, Democratus on The Troy Polloi, Troy Polloi Press, 2015.


Anonymous said...

Sounds like something Harry would do. Use the government to stifle people they don't like.

Anonymous said...

We wouldn't have all this nonsense if we didn't have a weak ass mayor like Lou Rosamilia. I have known Lou for several years and all I can say is he certainly isn't the man I thought he was. He allowed Rodney and his merry men to push him around and now he is going to cut and run. What a coward. Screw all the people who supported you. Right nice guy Lou? Now look what we are left with. It is all on you.

Anonymous said...

Wiltshire, Zalewski, Doherty and Robertson all threw TPD under the bus after Kokopellis. Sad that it takes the shooting of two officers to get their attention. Wonder what it will take to get Wiltshire to a budget vote?

Anonymous said...

Have they actually passed any legislation that's made anything better?

Anonymous said...

Zalewski is a Republican except on issues of gay rights.

Anonymous said...

Watched the Troy city council meeting last night on line.Interesting group of speakers. If you do your research, you might find some of these people are "habitual cop haters". Seems almost like a set up ala the Kokopelli"s "hearings"..Eh Rodney???

Anonymous said...

Wiltshire had hearings that went on forever and we learned nothing. At least he got his name in the paper.

DIY said...

How do I leave a comment?

C. James Dillweed said...

I'm taking the Uncle Sam Memorial down. Hate that guy. Who dresses like that.

Anonymous said...

This stuff is great. You should write a blog.

Anonymous said...

Screw the Blacks and their stupid memorials to cop haters. F...them! Go back where you came from. Nothing but punks and druggies.

Anonymous said...

Your not a true Trojan unless you've been hear 10 years. If less, shut the hell up.

Anonymous said...

Wow, jingoism on the local level. Very nice. What kind people.

Velvet Librarian said...


Anonymous said...

Oh really..Wiltshire, Doherty and Robertson have stirred all this up. Why? for their own "lofty" political "aspirations". And please don't forget the evil puppet master Kenny, the snake, Zalewski. The damage and division this group have caused this city is the worst I have ever seen. If they really cared about this city, Rodney would worry a little less about getting his face on camera and Doherty once and for all would just SHUT UP

Anonymous said...

Please do not speak ill of the dead. Kenny Stabler was The Snake. Kenny Z is just a plain old fashioned @$$hole.

Anonymous said...

Thanks...Point taken, you are absolutely right

Anonymous said...

But a snake has no backbone. Its perfect for Ken.

Anonymous said...

Harry's been gone for four years.