Op/Eds

06/11/2020
In a June 4 letter to the editor, Peter Ryersbach discouraged use of face masks as a means of preventing community spread of COVID-19. I have known Peter for many years, probably meeting him in my days as an HIV/AIDS prevention trainer, and respect his wise counsel and support the general thrust of his message: measures like wearing masks should be science driven.  His position on masks is wrong and faulty. First, the science is not finished on this issue. Just last week, the director of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington said, “We have clear...
06/11/2020
Editor’s note: The writer sent this letter to Gov. Phil Scott and copied the Independent. The current Fish & Wildlife board, that has been primarily assembled by your appointments, consists 100% of hunters and/or trappers, some of whom also own businesses or are heads of clubs associated with hunting/trapping. Per information on the Vermont Fish & Wildlife website there are 65,000 resident hunters in Vermont. The total population in Vermont is 600,412. So hunters only make up 10.82% of the state’s population, yet 100% of this board. Per information on the Vermont Fish & Wildlife...
06/11/2020
The murder of George Floyd by slow painful asphyxiation has broken the hearts of all caring people. Maybe he deserved to die you say. He broke the law, didn’t he? He and others were trying to pass counterfeit bills and were caught. He resisted arrest and was restrained by those officers who “protect and serve” the community.  If I lived in that community would I feel differently? If I ran the business that Floyd and friends were trying to scam, would I feel good about his death? When George Floyd begs for his life and says, “I can’t breathe,” I know I will never forget the lack of compassion...
06/11/2020
I was heartened last week when I read that James Miller, Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, resigned over President Trump’s using the military and a variety of law enforcement agencies to clear his path from the White House to St. John’s Episcopal Church for a photo op. It was followed by Admiral Mullen and General Mattis’s critical statements, by Secretary of Defense Mark Esper’s statement disagreeing with the president’s decision to invoke the Insurrection Act and a decision to send Federal troops back to their bases, and further by Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s (R-Alaska) comment, “We are...
06/11/2020
Education can be a great equalizer for many of our youth. Missing three-plus months of school this spring is a setback. This is especially true for the young students who are challenged doing schoolwork. School closing exacerbates an already bad situation for these youth. We can possibly loose a generation in secondary school education if schools do not open on its regular schedule this August. We can also use the break the pandemic has brought to initiate changes in education to better serve all. My concerns surrounding remote learning and challenged students have come from conversations...
06/11/2020
To us white privileged, and we are, every single white person in America, no matter our circumstances: Take a few minutes to really think about this. Really think.  What if you are preparing to walk out your front door to run an errand, go to a doctor’s appointment, go jogging, visit your mother? You, as a white person, gather your keys and go. Can a person of color do the same? After all, this is America, right? Well, no, for a person of color that simple act is not so simple. Out that front door lies possible danger. Maybe this is a good day and all will go well, a simple errand run. But,...
06/11/2020
I moved to Vermont in 2018 after my husband passed away unexpectedly. I have family in Vergennes and Ferrisburgh. I purchased a home in Vergennes in July of 2019. The reason that the above is important is because of an incident that made me fearful and uncomfortable in my own state. I was driving home from Shelburne on Wednesday, May 27, after dropping my car off to be repaired. My insurance company arranged for a rental vehicle for me to use. It was an almost-new gray sedan with Virginia license plates. While driving home on Route 7, a full-size pickup truck with large tires and Vermont...
06/11/2020
Praise to all those Americans that have been marching and standing up to police brutality, conservative state-sponsored terrorism, entrenched injustice, and the corrupt Trump administration! This system of white privilege and entrenched racism stinks. Major changes are needed, if we are ever going to be a truly democratic nation.  While Trump cowered in his bunker at the White House last weekend, he should have done the right thing for America, what Adolf Hitler did in his bunker at the end of World War II. Or maybe get the same treatment Mussolini got, and like all fascist dictators deserve...
06/11/2020
In this time of COVID-19 restricted movement and loss of contact, fear of disease, fear of loss, witnessed police violence and demonstration; fear often transforms into anger. I am writing at this time due to the witnessed racism and violence we are going through. We see with our own eyes the discrimination against “people of color.” A new phrase suggested for this designation is “people of the global majority.” This phrase is a more empowering phrase that reminds us that the whiteness of those predominantly holding power in the United States is unusual if one takes a broader view of the...
06/11/2020
White privilege. Do I have it? My parents and grandparents were academics, so they made a decent living and didn’t even suffer losses during the Great Depression. They studied and worked hard to get where they did, and they saved and invested wisely so that they were able to leave something to the next generation. But white privilege is not about what you did, but about what you were allowed to do. Assume for a moment that my family was black. My father’s maternal grandfather had a wholesale and retail hardware business in Springfield, Mass. If he had been black, it’s quite likely that his...

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Addison County Independent

58 Maple Street
Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100