Op/Eds

10/06/2019
On behalf of the Board of Directors of the Corner School Resource Center of Granville, Vt. (CSRC), I want to express our deepest appreciation to all the businesses and individuals of the Mad and White River Valleys who helped make our August Charter Day Celebration a joyful success. Many thanks are owed to Bisbees, The Hardware at Rochester, McKenzie of Vermont, The Rochester Cafe, Sandy’s Books and Bakery, Shaw’s, The Store (Waitsfield) and The Warren Store for making our preserves competition and cook-out such delicious fun.  The illustrious bakers of Granville also outdid themselves with...
10/03/2019
Neither of my parents went to college. Yet, I can remember first considering higher education in second grade. I was only interested in careers with more than four syllables like paleontologist, anesthesiologist or archeologist. At that time, I was relatively aware of my family’s situation and the associated challenges, especially in the rural towns of Rutland County where I grew up.  Finishing college felt like the path to success and the key to financial security, even if I didn’t use those words at the time.  This past May, I completed my life-long aspiration when I graduated from Northern...
10/03/2019
This late summer there have been so many nights when the sky was filled with stars. They are always there, of course, but not always so visible. We sat outside this August, looking up with hopes of seeing shooting stars but really just reveling in the firmament. Some out-of-town guests marveled to see the Milky Way for the first time after years of city life, excited to spot constellations. I was in awe of the people who centuries ago, without even the aid of telescopes, studied the heavens and figured out so much about their patterns of change over the course of a year and how to navigate...
10/03/2019
It’s harvest season, and boy, am I exhausted. I’ve really only picked some apples out back and brought in a few loads of tomatoes from the garden. But that’s not what’s wearing me out. It’s the canning. You may think, with electricity, that no one needs to can food anymore. But you don’t get it. As a flatlander living on an old Vermont farmstead, I feel obligated to do this. I’m just not very good at it. That’s no surprise. Canning is only one of many honest country homesteading skills I struggle to master. My whittling, for example, is a complete joke. Friends tell me just to freeze...
10/03/2019
The old joke goes that the only time you need to lock your car doors in Vermont is during the summer, because if you leave your car unlocked someone will fill it with extra zucchini from their garden. Now there’s a new plant that’s becoming just as common. Of all the things I thought I’d never see in this life — gay marriage, the Red Sox and Cubs winning the World Series, Donald Trump as president — legal marijuana tops the list. Yet here we are over a decade into medical marijuana legalization and nearly two years into Vermont’s one-of-a-kind experiment with legal reefer. I grew up when pot/...
10/03/2019
Editor’s note: This is the 37th in a series of essays on the history and meaning of the American political tradition. If this nation were endowed with a national religion, its name would be “democracy”; its foremost prophet, Walt Whitman (1819-92); its bible, “Leaves of Grass”; its original sin, slavery; and its redeemer, Abraham Lincoln. “Leaves of Grass” is a collection of poems, or better, one long poem with many parts, each one integral to the whole. It was published in 1855, and was revised and enlarged five times, the final or “deathbed edition” appearing in 1892. In the preface to the...
10/03/2019
It was a shock to parishioners and council members of St. Genevieve/St. Bernadette’s Catholic community to hear last month that Bishop Coyne may close down and possibly demolish St. Genevieve’s Catholic Church that heads Main Street in Shoreham Village. Built in 1873, St. Genevieve’s has a long-standing, proven Catholic presence in our community. This decision may be made as soon as Nov. 1. As a group, we are urgently campaigning to save our church. Please help us by sending a letter/message to Bishop Coyne proving we value the presence of our local, iconic, historic church in Shoreham, and...
10/03/2019
Burying one’s head in the sand is rarely an effective strategy for dealing with a problem. But that’s exactly what Vermont’s top officials are doing when it comes to the emerging epidemic of vaping-related lung disease that has hospitalized hundreds nationwide. Vermont’s Department of Health has confirmed one case so far, and is investigating several more suspected cases. At least 13 people have died in the U.S. as a result of vaping. While public health officials both in Vermont and nationwide continue to investigate, a common thread has emerged in nearly all suspected cases: unsafe...
10/03/2019
I am a volunteer at Middlebury’s Homeward Bound Humane Society. I am writing to raise awareness about the dogs at the shelter. We often take them on “outings” to allow them to experience life outside the shelter. During these outings they wear “adopt me” vests in order to mark them as adoptable animals. If you see a dog around town wearing one of these vests feel free to come say and say hello. They love attention and pets and these outings make the dogs’ day so much better. When you see these vests it’s important to not make assumptions such as “oh why did they get that dog in the first...
10/03/2019
The Addison Central School District (ACSD) school board is intending to “consolidate” three small town schools within the district by beginning a “facilities study” to determine which schools are or are not worthy of remaining open. The Ripton Elementary School would be a likely target of these planned school closings. Although the board appears to be focused on which school facilities would save the most money through closure, I argue that there is more to a small Vermont school than just financial considerations. Each small school in Vermont reflects the needs and diversity of the community...

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Addison County Independent

58 Maple Street
Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100