To the editor,

So, it’s over, done, finished. The Oswego County Sheriff’s Office’s participation in the Trump 2020 flotilla on Oneida Lake is now a thing of the past.

We’re told we need to just “get over it.” The participation by Sheriff Don Hilton and his underlings has been swept under the carpet, with no consequences, except a weak reprimand of “Don’t do it again!” from the chairman of the Oswego County Legislature.

It comes as no surprise given that those who are part of the GOP/Trump gang can get away with pretty much anything. It remains disconcerting that our tax dollars, which partially support this law enforcement agency, were used to fund this activity which was clearly a violation of county policy and the spirit of laws on use of taxpayer resources. To top it all off, Hilton then brags of his support of this racist president in justifying his departments’ participation. Mr. Hilton criticizes those of us who support protestors against police brutality for attacking his decision to fly the flag. While we do not support those who destroy government property, we do support social justice reform and the peaceful protests of the Black Lives Matter movement. We cannot support the murder of black men and women and other persons of color by some in law enforcement.

Mr. Hilton can support, with his own money and on his own time, this president who hasn’t a clue about social justice and who labels those in the BLM movement “terrorists” unlike those “good people” in the KKK.

To say we know have no confidence in or respect for this county’s leadership and the Sheriff’s Department is an understatement. We have been tax paying residents of Oswego County for over 40 years. We feel a good deal of anxiety as we wonder what protections/services we might get from this department should we ever need them. Will we be a target when we display a Biden flag or bumper sticker?

Clearly, we cannot trust Sheriff Don Hilton and the members of his department since they so blatantly disregard policy and law, and we cannot trust the county leadership to actually lead.

Holice Finch

Cherryl Grant


(4) comments


My god, what a rant over an issue that nobody cares about!


My god! What a clumsy attempt at a whitewash! Initially, I supported the Sheriff but ludicrous statements like "I take full responsibility" coupled with "I can do whatever I want; I'm the law in these parts.'" has eroded my support. The authors of this note are correct. If the chief LEO of the County spits on the law when it suits him, he is unfit for the position. Absent a SINCERE apology and reparations (repaying the salaries of his and all other Sheriff's officers involved in this violation of clearly written and stated public policy) no one can ever again trust the ethics and judgement of anyone involved. Weatherup needs to enforce the written rules of Oswego County and NOT hand out "Get Out Of Jail Free" cards to those who violate them with flagrant contempt. Written reprimands should be placed in the personnel files of all Sheriff's Department employees who participated in this deliberate excursion from strictly apolitical integrity. County property MUST NOT be used to advance the political agendas of any party or to reward (GOP) politicians pretty but cheap and easily forgotten promises. This is NOT a trivial matter. The Sheriff has a thirty+year history in law enforcement, with continuously increasing responsibility and power. Either he knew what he did was wrong and did it anyways, or he did not know and is therefore grossly unfit for the position. The window of opportunity for him to regain the trust of voters is closing quickly. So far, it seems that this is an aberrant, rare, bad decision. It's up to him - and him alone - to make this right.


I care about this issue.

Nobody is above the law. We are not allowed to pick and choose what laws to follow. It is disgusting that we have people that do not care that elected officials do not follow the same laws that you and I follow.


Thank you to the two authors. People do care.

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