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Guest Commentary

Is your vote safe?: The critical question in a democracy

In our bitterly and evenly divided country, close elections have become the norm: from the 2016 presidential election, which was decided by a handful of votes in a few states, to the 2018 vote for state rep, won by Maria Horn over Brian Ohler by 65 votes.

The same can be expected in the 2020 election, and so we need to pay attention not just to the outcome of elections but to their security, fairness and technology. 

Of Earth and mountains, sacred and mundane

It was one of those climate-change stories that, at least briefly, made headlines. On Aug. 19, a group of about 100 people, including Iceland’s Prime Minister Katrin Jakobsdóttir, gathered at the site of the first Icelandic glacier lost to climate change: Okjokull. A plaque titled A Letter to the Future stated, in Icelandic and English: “In the next 200 years all our glaciers are expected to follow the same path. This monument is to acknowledge that we knew what is happening and what needs to be done. Only you know if we did it.” 

Does your vote mean what you think it does?

Next Friday, July 26, there will be a Town Meeting and a vote in Cornwall that could have a profound impact on the town’s future and perhaps even its continued existence. Is it overly dramatic to say that the future of not just West Cornwall, but all of Cornwall, hangs on the ballot’s 39 words and a rather modest expenditure?  I would tend to say probably not — if the voting outcome gave voters a clear picture of what their vote would achieve — but it doesn’t.

A true consensus on community septic systems looked for in Cornwall

The June 28 Cornwall Town Informational Meeting about a Community WasteWater System for West Cornwall triggered substantial attendance. As the chair of the West Cornwall Water/Septic Study Committee, I was reinvigorated by the lively debate.

Taking responsibility for babies: Where are the men?

You have seen them on the news, on the steps of the U.S. Supreme Court: women wearing modest red gowns and white bonnets silently protesting the loss of reproductive rights. This is nothing new. Women have been trying to gain control over their own bodies for thousands of years.

An opinion on West Cornwall’s septic problem

I have spoken with quite a few property owners in the town of Cornwall who do not agree that the entire town should pay for the septic solution of West Cornwall’s private property owners. That said, I was willing to listen and hoped more would. I went to the West Cornwall septic meeting held Friday night, June 28. The majority of people there appeared to be from West Cornwall. I was disheartened not seeing many of the people I had spoken to.

Now is the time to save Camp AHA!

For nearly 30 years, North Canaan has had an after-school program called AHA! It was started by two moms years ago, Lynn Nania and Marcia Ramunni, who had young children at that time. After the first year, Lynn became the sole director. She has continued to keep this program going, which has been a godsend for working parents. Having a safe place with fun activities for your kids until you get out of work is crucial. AHA! provided that.

D-Day: Here’s what it was like for a child in England

On the 75th Anniversary of D-Day recently, I began to remember a few things about D-Day that not many people still living would be able to recollect. And I thought readers might find them interesting. 

We’re better when we work together

We are better together than we are alone.

It was one of many thoughts that crossed my mind Friday, March 15, at a ceremony in Sioux Falls, S.D., where I gave the keynote speech welcoming new citizens from 40 different countries to these United States. It was my first time at a naturalization ceremony. I wish everyone in America could experience it.