Commentary Series

Henningsen: Embargo

Apr 2, 2018

President Trump’s recent effort to protect American industry by imposing prohibitive tariffs on Chinese imports isn’t the first time an American president has attempted to translate economic ideology into public policy. And I hope current efforts don’t turn out as poorly as they did then.

While most of the civilized world has abandoned execution for moral as well as practical reasons, President Trump is now proposing an expanded application of the death penalty - traditionally applied only in first degree murder cases - for all “major” drug dealers.

A recent family gathering drove home the point that families — for all that holds them together — consist of a whole array of seemingly mismatched parts, all matching up to form something larger.

Adrian: Easter Egg Hunt

Mar 29, 2018

I’ve been thinking a lot about Easter eggs, and while my family never actually celebrated the holiday in the religious sense, I certainly took part in many a hunt.

Mares: March For Life

Mar 28, 2018

As both a former high school history teacher and a gun owner, I’d been trying to decide how the Parkland school tragedy last month might be transformed into a "teachable moment."

Shelburne Museum

The album quilt craze is thought to have emerged in the mid-Atlantic in the early 1840s, making its way to northern New England within a decade. Marked with the names of family and friends, these were keepsakes meant for hope chests that commemorated major life events and reminded their owners of heritage and history.

Vermont Abenaki Artists Association

Kwai Nedobak! Nd'elewizi Vera Longtoe Sheehan du Elnu Wôbanaki – that translates into English as: Hello my friends! My name is Vera Longtoe Sheehan, and I’m a citizen of the Elnu Abenaki Tribe.

My daughter’s in seventh grade - the age of pre-algebra, dances, and crushes. Once it was also the age of many newlyweds and it startles me to realize that in New Hampshire, legally speaking, it still can be.

Sue Pitiger / Norwich Historical Society

On the first anniversary of the Women’s March, Norwich residents woke to find a giant pink pussy hat atop the welcome sign at the entrance to town.

Fleming Museum of Art / University of Vermont

Making useful items from fiber is an ancient skill employed by both men and women throughout history.

In early America, hand-weaving was a male occupation but women took it up in the eighteenth century, and continued until the 1820s, when consumer preference turned to machine-woven products.

Mark Kastel is the co-director of the organic advocacy non-profit, Cornucopia, and Mark says we’re seeing the rise of two definitions of organic.

Recently, I attended a local forum on School Safety put on by representatives Laura Sibilia and John Gannon. Its purpose was for the legislators to get a sense of how their constituents felt about pending gun legislation.

The dreaded Emerald Ash Borer has been found in Orange County – an invasive pest that has the potential to kill most or all of the estimated 32 million ash trees in Vermont.

Craven: Student Activism

Mar 20, 2018

The sudden burgeoning of high school-driven youth activism, focused on issues of gun violence, reminds me of the 1963 Birmingham Alabama Children’s Crusade, which changed the course of history and moved President Kennedy to take a dramatic stand against racial segregation – in Alabama and elsewhere - which had until then stubbornly refused to yield.

John Philip Hagan / Bryan Memorial Gallery

For the last few weeks, the community of Jeffersonville has been playing host to a group of Russian painters, and their presence in our midst has been a form of painterly détente.

When I first ran for Secretary of State in 1997, I was new to politics and many people offered me advice.

I am a card-carrying member of the National Rifle Association with a healthy distrust of our government, and I was as heart-broken as anyone to learn how one young man turned predator and hunted down and murdered fellow human beings – most of them children not unlike my own.

Federal tax changes could seriously affect Vermont’s nonprofit organizations that rely on contributions to deliver mission-related services. With the new legislation enacted in December, taxpayers can now choose a doubled standard deduction or can elect to itemize their charitable contributions up to sixty percent of their adjusted gross income.

“Build it and they will come” is the oft-misquoted meme from the classic movie Field of Dreams. And in the case of the proposal by CoreCivic, a private prison firm, to build and lease back to the State a 925-bed prison in Franklin County, this meme embodies the worst fears of the corrections reform movement.

Before it was invented in a Vermont legislative committee room in the spring of 2000, the concept of Civil unions didn’t exist anywhere in the world.