Forum, Aug. 7: A Man Who Sustained Agriculture

Sunday, August 06, 2017
A Man Who Sustained Agriculture

I did not know Dilberte Leete. Yet, as someone with great admiration for our region’s farmers and their dedication to agricultural stewardship, I found Matt Hongoltz-Hetling’s profile of Mr. Leete to be moving (“‘Living on a Farm Is Very Satisfying’ ” July 31).

He and his wife, Shirley, were clearly a hardworking, resourceful team — true local entrepreneurs and businesspeople who were indeed thinkers, not schemers.

The profession of small-scale farming is a principled one. Thank you for helping your readers learn about a man who did more than his part to sustain New England agriculture, its values and the landscape so many of us hold dear.

Allan Reetz


Trump Is Doing What He Promised

In response to a pair of recent Forum letters, “A Corrupt Administration” and “Republicans Are Failing Us”:

I do not agree with everything Donald Trump does, nor do I consider a majority of his tweets presidential.

However, unlike most politicians, he has attempted or has done most everything he said he would do while campaigning.

His ties with Russia are unproven but the one who ran against him has a long list of suspicious activities and I’m quite confused as to why she is not in prison! 

The United States in the previous eight years was for the most part politically dictated by Democrats. They had many opportunities to improve or fix Obamacare, but did nothing. Sen. Pat Leahy and Rep. Peter Welch are full of “great ideas” now that the Republicans are actually trying to do something to fix it. Sen. Bernie Sanders has ideas, but the U.S. is not a socialist democracy.  

Where were they prior to the Trump presidency? Vermont’s Health Connect with its unaffordable monthly premiums and outrageous co-pays was also created by Vermont’s Democrats.

My point is please stop bashing political parties for the flaws of certain persons. Not all Democrats are alike and not all Republicans are alike. Everyone is an individual. There are good and bad in both parties.

This is from a Republican who cares about people, who believes in a fiscally responsible, accountable government and loves and lives by our constitutional republic.

Randy Gray

North Springfield, Vt.

What’s Needed Now

In a democracy, is it beneficial to depolarize political talk, letters and web posts? Is it our heritage to silently suffer the ills foisted upon us? Consider the squeaky wheel getting attention: It may be that the existing lubricant has warn thin, but other possibilities — such as bearings sheared or a foreign body being introduced — signal alternate remedies. Did the townsfolk lose sleep over Paul Revere’s ride to Lexington? Where would we be if they hadn’t?

The Better Angels organization, “better-angels.org/about” claims “reducing polarization is an urgent priority.” It hearkens to Abraham Lincoln’s first inaugural address: “We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory ... will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.”

Segue to the 21st century: For the first time, the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists decided to advance the doomsday clock largely because of the statements of a single person.

A new president in both cases; one deciding the fate of the nation, the other the fate of the world. When the administration turns its back on the people’s health, their welfare and their safety, it’s no longer prudent to compromise. The urgency to reduce polarization becomes an imperative to oust the parties trying to dismantle the various departments of our government, to stop the xenophobes working against diversity, and most importantly — unite against the oligarchs that fund monocultures of old white men running what remains of our government.

Kevin Leveret

White River Junction