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Letters to the Editor - The Lakeville Journal - 6-16-22

Thank you to all who marched

We are so grateful to everyone in our community who came, wearing orange, to March For Our Lives in Salisbury on Saturday.

A special thank you to Victoria and Mike Selbach for their extraordinary artwork. The placards they created gave face to the victims in Uvalde, as each was memorialized. Thank you to the many students who held those images as they spoke a few words about each person lost to that day’s tragic gun violence. Many thanks to Emily Elliot, Vance Cannon and John Carter for their beautiful music.

We are grateful to the many volunteers who helped before and during the morning and to our resident trooper for his presence.

Another thank you to all the drivers who waited so patiently while hundreds of marchers crossed routes 41 and 44!

As Mary Gates mentioned in her speech, in states where women are in control of their State Houses, things change for the better! We are so proud of our wives for the energy and devotion they put into making this rally and march so meaningful.

Now is the time to pass gun safety laws that nearly all of us want.

Please join CT Against Gun Violence and/or our local groups, Northwest Corner Committee for Gun Violence Prevention and Saving Democracy to find out what you can do.

The bipartisan agreement struck in DC on Sunday is a step in the right direction.

Let’s keep working to end the epidemic of gun violence in our country.

Lee deBoer

Al Ginouves

Michael Voldstad



Real leaders aren’t helpless

Watching teenagers holding protest signs and photos of school shooting victims at Saturday’s march at the Salisbury town Green, it was impossible not to imagine that these healthy, vibrant, strong young people could have been the ones cut down by gun violence. I imagine most attendees, like me, felt both deep sadness and a sense of helplessness.

There are some among us, though, who aren’t helpless. They’re the people we elect, precisely so that the power we give them to enact change can actually help solve difficult problems. That unavoidably means that elected officials bear responsibility when tragedies like Uvalde and Sandy Hook happen.

It isn’t just about the shooter; it’s about the society that enables shootings to happen. I wish every elected official, particularly those blocking gun law reform, looked in the mirror and felt/expressed remorse. I wish each one asked, what was in my power to do differently that could have prevented this? I wish each owned their responsibility and said, I failed to do the right thing by these kids and by the people who elected me. And I hope these officials are asking, what must I do right now to put an end to these horrors?

Pop psychology and individualist tradition in American culture urges us not to be immobilized by feelings of shame or to care what others think about us, yet perhaps shame is what we need our politicians to feel; shame for inaction, shame for kowtowing to lobbies, shame for self-interest. And maybe pride, too: the pride that can only come from stepping up and doing the right thing in a timely way.

We’ve had far too much of shameless leaders and false pride, as the Jan. 6 hearings show. It’s time for the real thing.

Robert Buccino



Compromise is needed on both abortion and guns

Supporters and opponents of abortion rights have a lot in common with supporters and opponents of gun rights.

All of them fear, with justification, that if they give any ground, make any concession, the other side will just keep coming back for more until the “right to choose” or the “right to bear arms” is either completely lost or entirely unrestricted.

Many liberals demand abortion rights without limits, while also demanding severe restrictions on guns, even repeal of any right to own them.

Many conservatives demand gun ownership rights without limits, while also demanding severe restrictions on abortion, even complete repeal of it.

Neither side wants to give an inch. Yet neither of these issues would be that hard to resolve with some honest and reasonable compromise.

On abortion, a majority of Americans support it before viability, but afterward only in cases of rape, incest, or physical harm to the mother’s health. The more developed the fetus, the less inclined they are to allow it, except in extreme circumstances. That’s reasonable.

On guns, a majority supports legal ownership with restrictions based on criminal record, mental health, age, assault weapons and high capacity magazine clips. That’s also reasonable.

What’s unreasonable is for one side to insist that early, unformed tissue is a human being, and for the other side to insist that an advanced, developed fetus isn’t.

What’s unreasonable is to argue that an arsenal should be just as protected as a few guns.

Neither abortion rights nor gun rights are absolute. Abortion wasn’t in the Constitution. It had to be “established” there by Roe v. Wade. Gun ownership was in the Constitution, but that doesn’t mean all guns for all people all the time.

To insist that all abortion is just a simple health care choice is delusional. To argue that increased gun safety lies in arming everyone to the teeth is lunacy.

The debates over both issues are based on misleading slogans endlessly chanted to browbeat everyone into submission, with political contributions, reelection strategies and the vagaries of Supreme Court appointees thrown in.

Honest compromise could put both issues to rest. Don’t hold your breath for it.

Mark Godburn



Joys of adoption and prolife choices

This letter to the editor is prompted by the May 26th picture and caption in The Lakeville Journal concerning the Prochoice rally at the Housatonic Valley Regional High School. As an alumnus of Housatonic Valley Regional High School, I wanted to let others know of the joy of adoption and prolife choices in our family.

Our grandfather, Nono in Italian, was born with the name Gabrille Amonzini. On his birth certificate it states that his father was unknown and his mother did not want to be known. He was placed in an orphanage and raised there until he was adopted by the Gasperini Family. To the best of our knowledge, he immigrated to the United States to escape extreme poverty and the conscription into the Italian Army during the build up to WWI. Upon entering the United States, he changed his name to John Gasperini to honor the family that had taken him in and raised him. His drive throughout his life left us a large family and a farm.

My wife Susan and I raised three boys. Our oldest son is adopted from a previous marriage. While raising three boys was a challenge, it has been a most rewarding life.

Our granddaughter experienced an unplanned pregnancy. Her choice to raise her daughter has provided meaning in her life where she had little before. She is doing an excellent job in raising her daughter.

Susan’s niece discovered during prenatal care that she was pregnant with a child with spinabifida. She chose to have the child. After many operations and the aid of a special walker she is able to live life to an astonishing degree. She attends a standard school and participates in beauty pageants. It is amazing how she lights up a room when she enters it. It is also amazing how the school and local community accepts and supports her.

My step sister was adopted into our family from a previous marriage of my step mother.

I am grateful to an unidentified 19th century Italian woman, a granddaughter and my wife’s niece who chose life instead of abortion and how these decisions and adoptions have been a huge positive to our family and the communities in which they live.

Perry Gasperini

Class of ‘73

North Canaan


Thank you from Lakeville postmaster

It is a great honor to serve Lakeville Post Office as your new postmaster. In my 18 years with the United States Postal Service, I have seen firsthand the role the Postal Service plays connecting neighbors and our community to the nation. Our Post Offices serve as a lifeline for our small businesses to reach customers no matter where they are.

Under Postmaster General Louis DeJoy’s leadership and Delivering For America, the Postal Service’s 10-year plan, we are maintaining universal six-day mail delivery and expanded seven-day package delivery, stabilizing our workforce, and spurring innovation to meet the needs of our modern customers.

From an incredibly successful 2021 holiday mail and shipping season to our recent role delivering COVID-19 test kits (two rounds), the Postal Service continues to provide a vital service for our nation and our community in Connecticut.

On behalf of the 650,000 men and women of the United States Postal Service, I thank you for continuing to support the Postal Service. Providing reliable mail delivery while strengthening the future of this treasured institution is our commitment to you.

Billie Martocchio


Lakeville Post Office



Tending the great garden we all share

All working faithfully in the small things pays off like a garden bearing fruit when planted and tended.

As summer arrives and a school year wraps up, each person has journeyed around the sun on Earth as part of the human family, living, learning and earning with shared agreements and interactions.

That’s something we can pause and appreciate as well as share online, the modern grapevine. We can reflect on these verses sung around the world.

“Every man ‘neath his vine and fig tree, shall live in peace and unafraid. And into plowshares turn their swords, nations shall learn war no more.”

Another grounding reminder of the bridge we cross from life to death is “We all have loved ones gone to glory.”

With my parents having a large family after meeting during World War II  in northwest Connecticut and out West for a number of years, I was grateful to rear the four wonderful people born to us in the same locale.

My kids taught me to write an email though I was all about networking in the school district and braved a few letters to newspapers.

Currently I share many ideas that could still take root to bridge gaps.

I only learned about Facebook 13 years ago after our teen son Kaelan Alexander Palmer Paton drowned helping save his friend on his last day of his freshman year June 16, 2009, not far from his high school, HVRHS. The brave timely response by rope rescuer Skip Kosciusko saved the teen. We are grateful all beside Kaelan who were in peril that day are doing well.

Along with many personal signs of support from family and friends, thousands had shown support in that FB forum with a “care “ or “like.”

Kaelan’s upbeat memorial service is on YouTube with song and a sense of the widespread support that could help others in these times.

Knowing the laws, guidelines and plans for relationships, outings, caring for others and going to work or school can help us all prepare for next steps in life to make wise choices and help prevent decline, difficulty or danger at each stage of life.

Even with agreements with adults and Kaelan to take precautions, such as using good judgment with two adults in charge of approved outings, those were not followed by minors or adults.

Many towns  and schools encourage or require 10 to 20 hours of community service  annually to graduate or attend an event or trip. That can also be a way to show an apology of action.

I welcome networking and help with many efforts for caregiving and advocacy. Many thanks to all striving to watch the edge of danger and difficulty with teamwork and plans all will follow closely.

With all joining in, our team of humanity can tend and enjoy “the great garden we all share” in nature and society with “love from above”.

Catherine Palmer Paton

Falls Village


West Cornwall doesn’t need this project

There is much info being provided at the gatherings about the proposed waste water project in West Cornwall. (June 11, June 25th, vote July 9th).

Unfortunately, what is not being provided are the current realities of such a grand endeavor. A few facts not made public:

There is no pollution from septics in West Cornwall.

All the retail commercial spaces are currently rented.

Only two buildings, one not in use at all (former bookshop) and Ingersoll’s showroom, (which has successfully functioned the last 30 years or so) do not have working septics.

The original estimate, first $3 million, then doubled in two years to $6 million, can, in my humble estimation, double to $12 million upon initiation of the project. The visiting engineer said it would be at least two years, if the town vote approves such a project, to begin tearing up the the town’s main street: Two years x $6 million=$12 million.

No place has been designated for the reprocessing unit (size of a garage). Residents do not want it close to their properties.

The estimated $110,000, yearly to run such a unit, many find excessive and ill spent for a village such as this one. NOTE: front page June Chronicle article :

“Combating Food Insecurity in Cornwall” — 40 adults, 30 children in need of assistance! A healthier way to provide improvement?

Releasing hopefully processed water into the Housatonic River just sounds suspect to me. Clean rivers are being fought for in our world today!

New systems have been put in (note the size of the new Frank’s restaurant septic) and individual buildings have addressed the issue with separate pricey systems already.

I do not know anyone, personally, who is in favor of this project, which will require the town taking a 40 year loan to pay for it. Yes, we may receive a $3 million grant to help.

Residents I know on River Road are not in favor of encouraging more tourist commerce. West Cornwall is special the way it is — now.

Verne Henshall

West Cornwall


Avoid denial to save the Republic

“Da Nile” is a long majestic river, which runs from the heart of deepest Africa north to the Mediterranean Sea, the founding place of one of ancient civilizations’ great storehouses of facts — the Library at Alexandria. It is 4,130 miles in length and has an average depth of 26 to 36 feet. It is one of the world’s great watercourses.

However, its size pales by comparison to the breathtaking “denial” coursing through the veins of the national Republican Party’s body politic. Whereas “da Nile” journeys from interior continental jungle darkness to the fertile floodplains of northern Egypt providing both hydro-power and essential water for farming, the GOP’s “denial” has one of the county’s two essential political parties mired in a dark morass of poisonous muck.

On Thursday, I viewed both the congressional Republicans news conference “pre-buttle” in the early afternoon and then  later that evening the first Jan. 6th Committee hearing. To hear Minority Leader McCarthy and his GOP cohorts tell it, the Jan. 6th Committee is an illegitimate sham, even though two Republicans House members, Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger, volunteered and are prominent, clearly dedicated members of the committee.

The GOP’s message to the country and the world has been and presently is “pay no heed to the ‘facts’ presented by Jan. 6th Committee. We have our own ‘facts’.” This has been judiciously echoed by its lapdog propaganda boosters Fox News and Newsmax.

The Jan. 6th Committee, on the other hand, presented many oral, visual and written first person accounts of participants — offenders, law enforcement, high ranking government office holders and military leaders and media. All of which are beginning to reveal the mounting of a sophisticated, intentional, dark conspiracy to thwart the lawful transfer of political power after a national political election.

If GOP political leaders are going to continue their fierce ’denial’ of these potent facts as they are further revealed and contextualized in upcoming Committee hearings, the country will be woefully ill-served by almost half of its political leadership.

If rank and file Republicans encourage, by actively nay saying or by passively accepting, the dismissal of these facts by their leadership or it’s echo-chamber media, of what seems to be shaping up as an evermore proven serious threat to the institutions of government and the peaceful transfer of power therein, they will be responsible for a saddening dereliction of duty as citizens. Challenge the facts for sure, it’s the American way.  But denial of such serious facts imperils the Republic itself.

Michael Moschen

Cornwall Bridge

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