Op/Eds

08/03/2020
As children get ready to return to school, I am reminded of my family counseling work after 9/11. Kids came to school following that horrific day carrying tremendous trauma and stress with them. Not surprisingly, they used phrases and drew pictures much like their parents described to explain their own despair. It became clear that children needed to hear less TV news coverage of 9/11 and also the adult conversation about the event. Parents needed to self-monitor their own discussions about their fears with other adults in front of their children. Topics of terror needed to be changed to...
08/03/2020
This week’s writer is Vermont Secretary of State Jim Condos I love voting. Going to the polling place to engage in the democratic process alongside family, friends, and neighbors is something I always look forward to. In fact, that is one of the reasons why I got involved in public service and ran to become your Secretary of State. Like so many other aspects of our lives, the COVID-19 pandemic has created significant challenges for our elections process. How you exercise your right to vote is your choice. Many of us, including me, have decided to vote early or by mail in the Statewide Primary...
07/30/2020
With Gov. Phil Scott’s declaration that everyone in the state should don facemasks when inside public establishments and when social distancing is not possible outside, Vermont just might be one of the few states to stay ahead of this pandemic’s rapid spread. The governor’s timing was particularly relevant as college towns and ski resorts faced the daunting task of having people comply with wearing a mask absent a statewide policy. For those readers who may be riding the fence on the effectiveness of wearing a mask, just look at the proof: Throughout the world, in areas where the public has...
07/30/2020
This week’s writer is author and commentator Bill Schubart. In the Morrisville of the 1950s where I grew up, we had limited but vibrant media access. Clyde Limoge’s News and Citizen came into our home weekly, purveying all the local joys and tragedies, police blotter, library events, home-team wins and losses, civic meetings, crop reports, and our neighbors’ births, graduations, retirements, and obituaries. Enriched by a network of “correspondents” from Elmore, Centerville, Wolcott, Hardwick, Eden Mills, Hyde Park, and Mud City, the News and Citizen brought us news from surrounding...
07/30/2020
About eight years ago I began doing hand-built pottery. Some people make beautiful bowls or whimsical wall hangings; I like to make sculptures. Probably all of you have made things out of clay, even if it was simply Playdough. I remember making an elephant when I was in kindergarten. The great thing about building with clay is that if you don’t like the way it’s turning out you just squish it into a ball and start anew. I realize that making a marble sculpture would be significantly less forgiving.  In the state of Washington, a famous bridge was built in 1940. At that time, it was the third...
07/30/2020
The other day my 3-year-old, Frankie, told us a story.  “Once upon a time Daddy was in the middle of the road,” she began. “On the yellow line.” My husband, Daniel, older daughter Joni, and I waited expectantly.  “And then a car came and crashed into Daddy.” We laughed. “What happened next?” one of us asked. “Then,” Frankie paused (she’s got decent comedic timing), “Daddy fell in a hole.” Joni was cackling now, and it made all of us giggle. “What happened next?” we asked. “Daddy couldn’t get out. And the monsters came. And they ate Daddy’s head.” *hysterical laughter* Daddy had been...
07/30/2020
With 12 days still to go until Vermont’s Aug. 11 primary election, more voters have requested absentee ballots for the primary than voted both in person and by mail in the 2016 and 2018 primaries. More than 150,000 voters may end up requesting absentee ballots for the primary. I see three important questions about primary turnout. First, how many of the voters who have requested, or will request, absentee ballots will actually return them? Second, under Vermont’s open primary law, how many voters will choose to vote on each of the three party ballots that they will receive: Democratic,...
07/30/2020
Editor’s note: This is the 68th and last in a series of essays on the history and meaning of the American political tradition. This is the final essay in my series about the American Political Tradition. The time has come for closing comments, a summation telling what it all means. But now that I have reached this point, I am lost for words. I have written too much to be able to summarize it all in a few sentences, or even a few dozen of them, and as I review what I have written, I become painfully aware that much has been left out. There is no essay about Jane Addams (1860–1935) or Martin...
07/30/2020
The situation with the Vergennes City Council is a mess, and no sugarcoating the state of affairs could paint it any differently. But, as with most things political in small communities, when residents pull together to resolve their problems, brighter days lay ahead. The question at hand is how long will it take for residents to regain the trust of city leaders? First, residents will have to elect four new city council members to replace the four who resigned over the past two-plus weeks, and that new group of seven will have to decide how to reconstruct city leadership in ways that don’t...
07/30/2020
Such a terrible accident. They are lucky to be alive. In Florida, where we recently moved from, Florida Power and Light (FPL) has been in the process of replacing all wooden poles with cement poles on all major highways. Due to high hurricane winds, they can withstand greater pressure from the elements than wooden poles and the centers do not rot. I think GMP should look into these as highway projects are relocating poles during the widening of roads or upgrading. Mahlon Conner Leicester

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Addison County Independent

58 Maple Street
Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100