Letters to the Editor
Credit the Architects
I was glad to see the article in Seven Days dealing directly and fairly with the Packard Lofts project and Miro Weinberger’s role as a developer [“The Houses That Miro Built: A Read on the ‘Developer’ Candidate’s Real Estate Record,” January 18]. I would like to say one thing, however, and this goes to the role of Seven Days, and that is the simple matter of giving credit where credit is due, especially with artwork, renderings, etc. Scott + Partners was and is the architect of record of the Packard Lofts project, and it would have been appreciated to receive credit as the person who produced the rendering, and even more so as the architect of the project. Technically, we own the design work, not Hartland Development Group. Had this been a photo, the photographer would have certainly received credit, or the artist had someone looked at this as “art.” It is tiresome, frankly, to most architects that their renderings, which are no less a result of a creative process, typically get no such credit. Seven Days should have asked our permission prior to including the drawings in the article.
Tyler M. Scott
Editor’s note: The schematic drawings were not credited to Scott + Partners on the Hartland Group website, but we should have inquired about them nonetheless. Our apologies.
A Toronto Must-See
Re [“Hi Ho, Ontario!,” January 11]: What a pity [your reporters] missed out on the Ontario Science Center, which was my favorite spot when I used to visit my brother in Toronto.
Burlington is predominantly a left-of-center city, right? So it stands to reason that a Progressive or Democratic mayor would typically be elected, right? That way, the majority of citizens would be most fairly represented, right? And it’s usually best for as many candidates to enter an election as possible, so that voters get the widest range of choice, right?
So was it right for right-of-center Kurt Wright to support the effort to repeal instant runoff voting (IRV), which would allow voters to rank their candidates by choice, after he lost the last mayoral election? Maybe for him, but for most of the citizens of Burlington it was just plain … wrong!
Sure, Wright is grinning, since he understands that Wanda Hines’ entrance into the current contest can only help him. Andy Bromage was right to point this out in his fine kickoff column [Fair Game, January 11]. In a three-way race, many left-leaning voters who prefer Hines will now be forced to consider voting instead for their second choice, Democrat Miro Weinberger, in order to prevent their last choice, Wright, from winning.
This isn’t democracy; it’s a shame, given that a perfectly fair, simple and cost-effective alternative should still be in place in Burlington. In fact, a ranked-choice voting system should be instituted wherever citizens want to be represented by those who most closely share their political viewpoints. Regardless of which side of the spectrum you look at it from, IRV always has been and always will be the only “right” way to go!
Participation Creates Informed Citizens
The two letter writers [Feedback, January 11] who oppose allowing noncitizens to vote in Burlington elections should have their citizenship revoked for inadequate understanding of American civic policies and civil rights.
Nations have borders, immigration laws and citizenship requirements for participation in the national democratic process. States and municipalities have residency requirements for voting and other services. For that reason, college students with temporary residency may register to vote locally. Similarly, city residents are entitled to a say in their own community, even if they cannot cast a vote in a national election. It is such civic participation, which offers the best training for eventual citizenship, if a person so chooses, and builds a strong community.
If Burlington wishes to fence off its civic life from noncitizens, then it will truly become what it often seems to us rural Vermonters: a different country.
Picked Up Issue
Just wanted to say: really nice job with the hitchhiking article [“Seven Lengths of Vermont,” January 11]. Great stuff.
Lincoln, Vt, and Brooklyn, NY
The Family Table has become our family’s table for special events, or just those Friday night “I can’t lift another finger” meals [“All in the Family,” January 11]. Regardless, there’s something on the menu that fits any occasion.
Ms. Cochran’s discoveries show that some of the so-called Vermont dairy farms are nothing more than multimillion-dollar industrial complexes [“Is the Use of Formaldehyde on VT Dairy Farms Making People Sick?” December 20, 2011]. They are getting away with conduct that other industries would be legally liable for. How can any industry pour hundreds of gallons of toxic chemicals on fields — toxins that eventually find their way into rivers and streams, if not the groundwater, and which become airborne, contaminating nearby residences and their inhabitants? No one likes regulations, but the reason why governments exist is precisely to regulate in the interest of the common good when all else fails.
Body and Mind? Duh
In regard to last week’s article “Body of Evidence,” is it to anyone’s surprise that our physical and mental health are linked? Find me a scientist or doctor who would have disputed these claims before these new studies were conducted. I consider this information to be common knowledge; certainly, your bright and beaming staff can dig up more newsworthy items than this!
Last week’s story by Alice Levitt, “All Smiles,” left many readers feeling just the opposite. Levitt stated incorrectly that Charlotte’s the Smiling Snail is Vermont’s first community-supported kitchen, or CSK. Stone Soup in Brattleboro and Fiddleheads Cuisine in Moretown both beat the Snail to it. The Smiling Snail is the first CSK in Chittenden County.