Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The LuLac Edition #1150, Apr. 14th, 2010




Today we launch our newest feature, "Write On Wednesday". As a person who has been writing professionally since the age of 15 (that means I was paid in some way shape or form for my written skills such as they are) one of the greatest compliments I bestow is when I read or see something and say, "God I wish I wrote that!!" There are so many talented people in this community who define a subject and give it more justice than I can. Some of it is on line, some of it is in the newspapers. By starting "Write On Wednesday", I am showcasing some of the great stuff that you might have missed. The opinions like the contributing writers will be diverse but passionate. Hope you enjoy our new feature.


With the news swirling around about the FBI's raid on the home of State Senator Ray Musto, I thought it appropriate to pull an article that was written about the Senator by Dr. Joseph Leonardi. Leonardi is a frequent contributor to newspapers and was a frequent guest on WYOU TV's "InterActive News". Leonardi also has been front and center in his advocacy of a healthy life style and has been a guest on WVIA TV's "State of Pennsylvania". Here's his article about Ray Musto, written before the FBI raid.

Thank You “Greater Pittstonian” Ray Musto
by: Joe Leonardi
The political season has begun. Signature verification is done, and in lieu of any challenges, the slate of candidates will begin the battle. This election year will be the first in my voting lifetime that Ray Musto will not be a candidate. I have been a political junkie since I was in the womb. As a youth, I would be the only person my age following the political happenings in the Sunday Dispatch and Sunday Independent. In a time before cable news and talk radio, the outlets were limited, but the information was not. I was a political groupie. There are many events that are simply ingrained in one's memory. The following relates one that, for me, ranks among the top. My sister and Congressman Musto were working the stands at the Mount Carmel Festival. My parents encouraged me to go up and say hello. Congressman Musto and my younger sister were side by side. My sister said to him, “Hey Cong! Here comes my brother.” I was mortified. My little sister is calling a U.S. Congressman “Cong.” Ray Musto laughed, smiled, shook my hand and said hello. here was no self-important arrogance, no attitude, no “I am a Congressman and you will refer to me as such.” My sister referred to him many times in the same informal way and each time Ray Musto continued to smile, laugh and serve the festival patrons. Ray Musto served his constituents in an understated and extremely effective manner. He didn't see the need to grab every headline, promise the moon nor thump his chest with every accomplishment. He didn't need to talk the talk. Ray Musto walked the walk! For almost four decades, Ray Musto navigated the halls of the State House, the U.S. Congress or the State Senate. Throughout his distinguished career, he maintained his integrity and his concern for the people he was chosen to serve. During the ABSCAM sting, Ray Musto never feigned knowing the difference between ight and wrong --- he did what was right! It was his service to the people that defined his political career. It was his genuineness that kept him above the fray. It was his humility that kept him one of us. It was his character that enabled me, then a Rpublican, to always pull the lever for Ray Musto.
My last professional contact with the Senator came when I was teaching a political science class. I asked him if he would have the time to be a guest lecturer. The answer was, “Name the day.” e gave my students a no holds barred insight into what it takes to get laws assed. When one of my more cynical and boisterous students verbally went toe to oe with the Senator, he didn't act offended, he didn't condescend nor did he ack away. He answered every question with blunt honesty. Then, he advised that student to run for office and offered his counsel. It is going to be a very different Northeast Pennsylvania without Ray Musto as an elected public official. We should be very grateful for the time he has given us Thank you Ray Musto.

You can reach and read more about Doctor Leonardi at this web address.


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