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Forum, July 29: Lebanon Municipal Airport is a federal money pit

Published: 7/28/2021 10:00:08 PM
Modified: 7/28/2021 10:00:10 PM
Lebanon Municipal Airport is a federal money pit

The federal bureaucrats are back in town, throwing airline ticket tax dollars at the money pit known as the Lebanon Municipal Airport (“Airport gets more runway: Lebanon facility afloat with federal money as officials solidify financial footing,” July 18).

Last time it was tree-cutting. Whatever it is this time, the excuse will surely recall the well-known rubric: “safety, the last bastion of the bureaucrat.” And no matter what party he or she belongs to, when the grant is awarded a news release will come from a member of Congress lauding the importance of the project for the local economy.

I flew out of the Lebanon airport a few weeks ago for the first time in about 25 years. The terminal was deserted, just as I’d seen it when dropping off rental cars there over the years. The Transportation Security Administration operation there is sort of a toy version of what you see at real airports, four agents for eight passengers. Not that they’re aren’t diligent. Candy bars were removed from one man’s backpack and carefully scanned one at a time. But, at $113, the flight to Boston is cheap thanks to the federal “essential air service” subsidy for airfields in the boondocks. And bipartisan for sure!



What is the Vt. Guard’s
mission in Kosovo?

Sgt. Gloria Kamencik of the Colchester, Vt.-based 172nd Public Affairs Detachment of the Vermont Army National Guard thoroughly documented the travels of an unmentioned number of (mainly) Vermont National Guard soldiers from Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany, to Pristina, Kosovo (“Vt. Guard soldiers arrive in Kosovo,” July 23). She several times mentioned a “mission” for which the group had prepared for over a year, but never described what that mission was.

In a future update, I hope Sgt. Kamencik will explain why we need to deploy Vermont National Guard soldiers to Kosovo. What vital national interest is the Guard protecting in the Balkans?


East Thetford

Some have not given up
on the ‘Lost Cause’

In Abraham Lincoln’s Second Inaugural address, he used the idea that perhaps one of God’s purposes for the Civil War was that every drop of blood drawn by the lash must be balanced by a drop drawn by swords. Can we see the Lord’s hand working on Jan. 6? The attackers were well-armed and had seriously bad intentions — “Hang Mike Pence.” Yet not one senator or representative got a scratch.

The Confederate flag in the Capitol means to me that some have not given up the ideas of the “Lost Cause,” slavery, white supremacy and teaching hatred of those without white skin. That flag could also mean that the division in the country now is the effect of those ideas, and it is a sign to us that it is time to double down on “teaching out” those ideas with gentle, firm and loving teaching.

Slavery here lasted almost 250 years. Will it take 250 more years to finish wiping away the ideas and results of that time? I hope and pray not. We have used almost 100 years, by ending Reconstruction and allowing Jim Crow, until the Civil Rights Act.



Missing the Books page

I have noticed in the past month or so that you have cut back on my favorite part of the Sunday Valley News: the Books page. Please preserve the Books page! Thank you.



Watch the headlines, please

As a physician, I am concerned with your misleading headlines, such as “CDC reverses mask guidance” and “CDC backtracking on mask guidance creates worries about compliance,” which appeared on July 28. These statements make the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention appear unreliable. While nominally true, the headline should have read: “Delta variant surge overwhelms hospitals so that the CDC must recommend masking again.”

As this crisis has unfolded, recommendations have had to change. The CDC is not weak or fickle; the virus has mutated yet again and caused the situation to change drastically for the worse. The Valley News should be warning that unless more people get vaccinated, the virus will mutate again into something even worse. The Valley News does no favor to the public by instilling distrust in organizations that work for public health. Shame on you.


Reading, Vt.

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