My Brother Dave Hassig’s Letter to Editor Honoring My Activism and Confronting False Stalking Charge

Honor to My Brother Donald Hassig

Having been off in the Remote Wilds of the Alaskan Interior since
early June, it came as a real shock to learn from my Brother, Don
Hassig of the terrible negativity, which certain newspapers and local
government officials had interjected into Don’s Green Party run for
Congress in the new 21st CD.  With 1000s of miles separating me from
the family in northern New York, one likes to think of family members
being safe and out of harm’s way back home.

Amidst all the anger and frustration, I keep asking myself–What can I
do to stand up against these abuses as a caring Brother?  First, I
want to say, “Honor to Donald Hassig”.  My Brother’s record of 20
years of dedicated environmental activism speaks for itself–standing
strong in opposition to a county garbage incinerator; battling against
an ill-conceived Chatham chip-board factory; bringing forth the
science that led the way to a state-wide ban on trash burning;
promoting the clean-up of hazardous waste sites in the Town of Lisbon,
on the Grasse River, ALCOA and GM sites; and cancer prevention via
public education regarding industrial pollutants contaminating
animal-fat foods.

How can it be that in our so-called “free” country an activist is
arrested for Stalking because he sought to persuade the St. Lawrence
County Public Health Director, Dr. Susan Hathaway, to use the power of
her office to inform the public of cancer risk associated with
consuming animal-fat foods?

To any thinking person, Don’s arrest was for one purpose–to stop him
from putting pressure on government to deal with the issue of
industrial pollutants and disease.  It’s an evil day for American
agriculture when the interests of industrial farming run counter to
the Public Health.

I ask myself–What can I do to defend my Brother against this abusive
charge?  How can I defend the Honor of our family name?  It’s clear to
me that County Administrator St. Hilaire, Health Director Hathaway,
and our County Legislature are intent upon keeping the public in the
dark on this whole matter of industrial pollutants in animal-fat
foods.  Can it be that the local power of the dairy industry will
succeed in suppressing strongly research-based scientific information,
which proves the link between industrial pollutants and disease?
There’s also the larger social question here–Have American civil
liberties been eroded away to the point that an activist must face
criminal charges, social disapproval and possible imprisonment in the
course of exercising the right to speak freely on matters of the
Environment and Public Health?  Have American morals decayed to the
point that government officials feel free to lie about Good People
like my Brother?

Let’s hope that Our Country still has enough character to honor civil
liberties and dedicated activism above the dollar interests of any
particular industry.

David W. Hassig                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 General Delivery Lake Minchumina, AK USA

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