Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

Opinion

April 9, 2013

Provincialism will be the death of us

(Continued)

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Updegrove said, “While I certainly appreciate the fact that Buffalo is facing its share of challenges, the reality is that we need to look at a fair and equitable disbursement of those funds so that the people of Niagara County may also benefit.”

What the majority caucus leader meant was: “There’s money. It should be all ours.”

We have free live music almost every night throughout the summer in Western New York. Lockport, Tonawanda, Lewiston, Buffalo. Free music abounds. But rather than trying to promote this unique feature of Western New York, these communities fight with each other — as if what’s prevented Tonawanda from breaking free of the recession of the 1990s is Art Park.

One of the things that prevents us from moving forward is our refusal to do it together. Rather than allowing any rising tide to lift all boats, we try to drown each other in an effort to keep our own heads above water.

I’ve never liked the phrase “Upstate New York.” I don’t remember it growing up. We were “Western New York” and in my mind we still are. I’d prefer, though, that we simply replace “Western New York” with “Buffalo.” Until we do that, we might as well be West Virginia. Or North Dakota. Or any other number of places that the rest of the world doesn’t care about.

Scott Leffler is a father, a writer and a Buffalonian. In that order. Follow his tweets @scottleffler.

Scott Leffler is a father, a writer and a Buffalonian. In that order. Follow his tweets @scottleffler.

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