27th essay in a series
I suspect that almost everyone who reads this essay will be unfamiliar with Margaret Fuller (1810–50). Her name does not ring a bell in our minds as do the names of Ralph Waldo Emerson or Henry David Thoreau, her contemporaries, or Frederick Douglass, Oliver Wendell Holmes or Henry and William James, her successors in the intellectual life of America. And yet, there should be no doubt that she belongs among this august group, and her writings, as do theirs, deserve to be included in everyone’s list of American Classics, of books to read and reread. I will remark on only...
I was recently reminded by an act of kindness how grateful I am to be living and working in Addison County and by extension how important it is to say thank you! Our lives, personal, professional, social, were turned upside down by the pandemic.
All of us here at the Salisbury Town Office experienced the upheaval as well, which we each dealt with as best we could. We added protocols, health and safety checks and cleaning routines. We asked researchers to make appointments. We did our best to provide as much assistance remotely as we could. Through all the disruption and all of the changes, we...
As a university student in Germany in 1966-67, I learned that teaching the history of Nazi Germany in German schools was strictly prohibited, much to the outrage of the younger teachers and their secondary school students. Students born during the Nazi regime and after were asking their parents, particularly their fathers, the painful question of what they had done during the war.
A student/teacher protest movement began in the late ’60s to demand that the full story be taught and in 1968 the government relented and asked that a thorough curriculum on the Nazi era be taught in all schools. As...
In your issue of The Addison Independent dated Thursday, June 10, 2021, a letter to the editor describes an action by Heidi Willis, Salisbury, whereby she had exchanged her fossil fuel driven lawn equipment for electrically powered lawn equipment. I think this is fantastic. She shows that “it can be done.” We can convert from fossil fuel powered appliances to electrically powered appliances. We just need to do it. We have the ability and replacement appliances to do our business and not pollute with fossil fuel exhaust. Also, electrical machinery is much quieter.
Not only does Heidi “go...
The weather never seems to be normal lately: too wet or too dry, too cold or too hot, record this, record that. It could be that there never really was a “normal” — that weather is just prone to dramatic fluctuations from year to year. Or it could be that climate change is ramping up in earnest, like they’ve always said it would. Whatever the reason, it’s probably a good idea to pay attention.
I’m not always good at paying attention to things that aren’t screaming for my attention. But this year, the weather has gotten pretty close to screaming at me through a series of violent storms.
The Vermont Legislature was called back into special session on Wednesday to try to overturn three vetoes issued by Gov. Phil Scott and also to possibly consider legislation that failed to get needed support before adjournment in May.
There is no need for this special session. Legislators, media members, lobbyists and others who follow the Statehouse have noted each of the three vetoes can be addressed in greater detail when the Legislature returns in January.
The cost to taxpayers will be approximately $50,000 for each day of the veto session. Legislative leaders have indicated that in...
Last weekend we did something we haven’t done in well over a year: We had friends over for dinner.
I am so out of practice.
Pre-COVID, we regularly had company. But in the intervening time I lost all memory of how to entertain anyone other than immediate family. All day Saturday, I tried to recall how socializing worked.
An hour before this couple arrived, I realized I didn’t know what to wear. But I sensed that my standard bike shorts and an oversized T-shirt were too casual, even if I changed into ones that didn’t have holes.
I finally settled on a 24-year-old fuchsia bridesmaid’s dress the...
Editor’s note: After a short pause, this series picks up today with the 26th essay.
Henry David Thoreau (1817–62) was a poet, a naturalist, and a philosopher endowed with an acute moral sensibility. He was familiar with the Socratic dictum, “The unexamined life is not worth living” and applied it to himself. His journal, consisting of 2 million words, is a searching record of his daily life; indeed, everything that he wrote is self-revealing. If you read his writings, you will not fail to meet the author.
The central theme of his writings is the conduct of life — how to live, which was...
While I realize that the crime and the destruction of property are no laughing matters, your photo caption in last week's Bristol Police Log indicating that a man disabled an ATM by “pinching” it gave me a much needed eye-watering laugh. With any lick, there will be more unintended misspellings in future issues.
Editor’s note: We got a sardonic chuckle when we saw this in the print edition, too. It was, of course, a typo; the gentleman was “punching” the ATM. We try not to have the kind of “lick” that the writer hopes for.
Let’s hope Vermont is looking in the rearview mirror at the coronavirus pandemic. Have we learned anything about health care?
Most people agree that Vermont did better than most states at controlling the spread of the virus, and now, with 80% of the eligible population having received at least one dose of the vaccine, we are the national leader.
So what have we learned?
For one thing, it looks like if we make health care a public good in Vermont, available free of charge at point of service, a lot of Vermonters will avail themselves of that service and get the care they need.