Op/Eds

09/23/2019
This letter was written to the ACSD Board and Superintendent Burrows and shared with the Addison Independent. It’s the end of September, and, for me, that means my four-year-old has just completed her first month of school in the Ripton Pre-K classroom. The transition for our family had its ups and downs, and I imagine that is not unique to us. The morning scramble to pack-up, make lunch, and eat breakfast is a little rusty and we are lucky to make it to school before the bell rings to let kids in from morning recess. The pulling of the rope in the bell tower (a special job for an excited kid...
09/23/2019
The guest editorial by former CIA station chief Haviland Smith was excellent (Addison Independent, Sept. 9). In straightforward terms, it highlighted Trump’s relationship (or infatuation) with Putin, and his foreign policy activities. As the author said, this is outside the left-right arguments about which way to move the country. This is a leader who is completely flipping the relationships that have been in place for years. Trump’s preference for dictators is obvious on multiple fronts. Trump must go. He has damaged democracy by his dictatorial style of leadership. The chaos and the...
09/19/2019
In the third of a three-part series examining the historic and current role of the Otter Creek in Addison County, and its current status as the heaviest conveyor of phosphorus pollution into Lake Champlain, we turn a sympathetic ear to the burden placed on farmers by Act 64.  In previous installments, we’ve been reminded that the deteriorating quality of the water in Lake Champlain has been a long time coming. From the early days of commercial, industrial and agricultural development, the Otter Creek has been a conduit for groundwater pollution as have almost all rivers and streams in...
09/19/2019
“This is so boring, Gaga!” Our three year old granddaughter looked at me with delight in her eyes. She was busily engaged rolling out dough and using her favorite cookie cutters.  I was taken aback and was about to correct her by saying something like “But Lucretia, this is the project you asked to do and you seem to be enjoying it.” Or “Lucretia, do you know what boring means?”  Fortunately, I just kept my mouth shut and smiled back at her. After more such statements in the following days, I realized she was trying out a new power phrase learned from her older cousin.  Unlike the potty-talk...
09/19/2019
The other day at an antique shop I bought an old magazine: the May 1905 issue of Ladies’ Home Journal. What a trip. Times may have changed, but in general, people — and magazines — haven’t. Who would have thought that as far back as 114 years ago, women were complaining about skirts not having pockets? Just as they do today, people fawned over the rich and famous. A pictorial in the magazine, titled “Kate Douglas Wiggin as She Really Is,” followed a normal day in the life of the glamorous Wiggin, famed author of “Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm” (I googled her). Today, Instagram users would call...
09/19/2019
In the race against time that is the worldwide effort to avoid the worst of climate change, there’s a lot to despair. Sometimes it seems every day brings more bad news about the seeming inevitability of global heating, food shortages and chaotic mass migrations. But for today, let’s look on the bright side.  A week of walkouts, rallies and other public events begins this Friday, Sept. 20, with the global climate strike. It will be the biggest-ever day of climate action.  If there is a day when we can begin to turn things around toward a safer and more stable world, it would be a good idea for...
09/19/2019
Editor’s note: This is the 35th in a series of essays on the history and meaning of the American political tradition. American civilization would be much diminished if Henry David Thoreau (1817-62) had not gone to live “alone, in the woods,” by the shore of Walden Pond, for two years, two months and two days, in a house built by himself, subsisting on simple fare: fish, wild fruits and beans and other vegetables grown in a garden that he planted and tended.  He did not go simply to be alone. Thoreau was a writer and he wanted to be in a quiet place to finish writing a book. The book he...
09/19/2019
Vermont is known for its beautiful landscape and Green Mountains, and we work hard to preserve the open space, the trees, the environment, the air quality, the water, the wildlife, and the wetlands, but we often forget to protect and preserve the peace and quiet. Peace and quiet is the essence of Vermont, and we must maintain diligence to preserve and protect it.  Our zoning districts were created to allow for peace and quiet in our residential and agricultural neighborhoods and our commercial districts/downtown spaces were built to allow for large groups of people, noise, artificial lighting...
09/19/2019
As a county we have a rich history and culture; one that has thrived off of agriculture, as well as the growth of small local businesses. In the beginning, Lake Champlain allowed merchants and farmers to trade their goods throughout New England. Our rich green forest, filled with birdsong, created a booming fur industry. As we have moved into the 20th and 21st century our golden whispering leaves, crisp autumns and world class maple syrup have brought tourists from far and wide into our local businesses. Our natural landscape has continued to serve us well; perfect for raising livestock, our...
09/19/2019
As I sat in the auditorium of Middlebury Union High School last week for the A.L.I.C.E. training, I watched peers tremble as they watched a video about what to do when an armed aggressor tries to shoot people in school. I tried to steady my pounding heart as MUHS students asked the faculty and resource officer what they were supposed to do if an active shooter came into the lunch room or if it happened while they were in the bathroom. Although the method of Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate is much better than sitting in the corner of a dark, locked room, it is incredibly sad and...

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Addison County Independent

58 Maple Street
Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100