Editorial: Of youth hunting, student views, and the local arts
While the impeachment hearings of President Donald Trump proceed with damning evidence that neither Trump nor fellow Republicans have tried to refute (change the topic, yes, but not deny the evidence), we note only that impeachment is a political process, not a judicial one, and if the Republican Senate decides to put Trump above the law, they will be setting a dangerous precedent that has the potential to create authoritarian rule. Hopefully, enough Americans will come to understand that threat and reject the GOP in 2020.
But on to more local, and happier topics.
In this issue we highlight youth deer hunters in our sports section, along with several photos of area youth posed proudly with their deer. As hunters there is much to celebrate in the youth season. These young Vermonters are continuing a long tradition of living off the land, and walking in the footsteps of their parents and previous generations. The sport teaches valuable lessons of how to dress to stay warm in harsh conditions, to be self-reliant, to use firearms responsibly, and to be respectful of the rules and regulations established to maintain a healthy deer population.
Hunters or not, all of us can appreciate that the sport teaches a love of the outdoors and of Vermont’s colder weather — something that young Vermonters must learn to embrace, if, as a state, we want them to settle here and start a family. Whether that’s mountain biking, skiing, running on mountain trails, doing triathlons or hunting, it’s all the same if the end result is a love of the land, and of the weather that makes this sometimes rugged place the jewel that it is.
Congratulations, then, to these young hunters; to the traditions they keep, and to the love of the outdoors they have already embraced.
We’d also like to draw attention to an eight-page special section compiled by the Mount Abraham Union High School. It’s the regular edition of the Eagle’s school newspaper, The Bird’s Eye View. It includes brief profiles of five new staff members; an interesting story on Mt. Abe 4-Hers’ trip to Madison, Wisconsin for the National 4-H Dairy Conference; art and poetry submissions by students (including some in a foreign language); book reviews on favorite recent reads (including Stephen Hawking’s A brief History in Time, and the nonfiction book, Exceptional Wealth.
These eight pages are noteworthy because they show, better than reports on school board meetings can ever tell, what students in our high schools are doing and what’s important to them. It’s about students talking about student life. Every reader can learn from these pages, and we appreciate the students, and the school’s, effort to produce these pages each quarter.
Finally, reflect for a moment on the abundance of arts and entertainment we enjoy in Addison County. In today’s Arts Beat column by Greg Pahl that spans three pages, he compiles eight performances — from dance to film to theater and music — that beckon our attendance. The Middlebury College production of “One Flea Spare,” looks particularly engaging, as does Vanessa Dunleavy’s and Miranda Ferris Jones’ first-run workshop of their musical “Showing Up,” written and performed by two friends who grew up in the Middlebury area and performed in high school musicals and dreamed of one day doing that on Broadway. It’s directed by Middlebury’s Town Hall Theater artistic director Doug Anderson and is sure to be a show-stopper this coming Friday evening and Sunday afternoon.
The Middlebury College Community Chorus also performs its annual Thanksgiving concert this Saturday and Sunday at the Mahaney Arts Center in Middlebury. And that’s just the tip of it. Check out the weekly Arts + Leisure section in each Thursday edition of the Addison Independent to find musical acts (bands at local venues), artist profiles, and events, concerts, museum and art exhibits that inform, inspire and bring joy to our lives each and every day.
A wealth of activity is in our midst. It’s easy to stay home and hunker down in these colder months, but it’s far more fun and better for us all to get out and enjoy what our communities have to offer. Toss on your coat, and we’ll see you at the next performance!