A bigger picture
Editor of the Reformer,
As a Vermont citizen I realize that we have been really lucky during the pandemic. I am grateful that Governor Scott used science and the guidance available to keep Vermonters safe, even though I do think that the governor waited too long to require masks leaving many businesses to deal with members of the public who have refused to wear masks leaving them and their employees vulnerable to violence as well as the virus. However, in the bigger picture, I have been alarmed at our governor’s unwillingness to fund our public schools. Governor Scott says that we need to attract people, and families to Vermont and yet the public education that families need and want will not be supported if Scott has his way. Who wants to bring their child here to ride a bus for 45 minutes or an hour to reach their designated school? He has disregarded our town votes to fund our schools to the degree that we think is needed. He says there is no money. There never will be as long as we cling to our current failed methods to fund public education. Just what is his “thinking outside the box” to find ways to strengthen our schools so that families want to come to Vermont? Further he continues to ignore the reality on the ground. Teachers can no longer be just teachers, they have to be social workers without adequate support. Scott did not do anything special to get us through COVID; he followed the science. David Zuckerman will continue to follow that science and continue with those in this administration such as Dr. Levine to assure Vermont’s success in dealing with COVID, but more importantly he will work to make our public education stronger and more equitable. So, if you would like to reward Governor Scott for his handling of the virus, please send him a letter of appreciation, or a gift, not two more years as governor. Marcia Hylan
South Newfane, Oct. 1
School yard skirmish
Editor of the Reformer,
Two boys in a school yard. One is a spoiled bully; the other not sure what to do. The skirmish starts. A teacher tries to break it up but neither boy shows much respect for the teacher. The skirmish continues. No one gets seriously hurt. The bell rings and the boys go home. The teacher wonders if these boys will ever mature and learn how to deal with their differences in a constructive way. That describes what happens in school yards throughout the world but unfortunately, it also describes the spectacle that occurred on Tuesday evening (Sept. 29); a so-called Presidential Debate. It certainly wasn’t “presidential” nor a “debate.” Obviously, the two people who rose to the top in our presidential election process are not qualified to be at the top. Our candidate nomination process is severely flawed. Candidates like Elizabeth Warren, Amy Klobuchar, Corey Booker, Bernie and many others are much more qualified. This is another example of how our white supremacist, male dominated, political parties prevent qualified leaders from rising to the top. So, here we go again. No great choices but at least one candidate demonstrates some semblance of integrity and decency. Although I’m with Biden and Harris in November, I’m going to put my future efforts into trying to influence a change to our very broken systems. This change starts with recognizing and dismantling the white supremacist components in our judicial, policing, school, election, housing, financial, and employment systems.
Guilford, Sept. 30
Zuckerman supports important issues
Editor of the Reformer,
We here in Vermont are blessed to have two decent men to choose between for governor. Phil Scott has done an exemplary job in dealing with the coronavirus pandemic, and he supported and publicly signed legislation for a degree of gun legislation. There are, however, some things he has not done or else he has actively opposed: he has opposed any increase in the minimum wage (which has had a direct effect on many people’s ability to weather the pandemic); he opposed legislation to address climate change; he has not given the Vermont director of racial equity the administrative support she deserves to do her job well. With David Zuckerman, we can have all the good that is in the Scott administration, with the addition of positive support for those other things that Gov. Scott has opposed. David Zuckerman supports raising the minimum wage. David Zuckerman supports taking action to reverse climate change. David Zuckerman supports the director of racial equity, and pledges that he will provide the necessary staffing for her office. Most encouraging is that David Zuckerman supports a view of the future that looks for positive improvement. Tellingly, he says that as we emerge from the coronavirus pandemic, we should not be trying to get back to the way things were before; instead, we can learn from this crisis and use those lessons to make a better Vermont.
East Dummerston, Oct. 2