Plattsburgh Wants F-35s
If only the Air Force would consider Plattsburgh, N.Y. [“F-35 or Bust? Other Towns Clamor for ‘the Most Expensive Weapon Ever,’”  May 30]. We have one of the longest runways in the Northeast — long enough to land the space shuttle. We sorely miss the roar of the KC-135 and FB-111 overhead. We would welcome the return of the Green Mountain Boys with open arms. They served here in New York many years ago with distinction at Fort Ticonderoga. Bring them on with the F-35.
Cumberland Head, N.Y.
Tesekkur Ederis, Seven Days!
Thanks so much for the recent articles by Corin Hirsch [Side Dishes, April 18  and May 30 ], giving our family the heads-up to the new Turkish restaurant — Istanbul Kebab House — in Essex Junction! A great place with wonderful food and nice people! Actually, it was so much more than just a great meal! That first bite of the spicy lamb dish known as the Adana kebab brought me back to my days as a teacher in the southern region of Turkey in the mid-1970s, where I spent so many great weekend nights eating with my fellow expats in great little backstreet kebab houses in Tarsus and Mersin and, of course, Adana. So many rich memories of life in that wild and woolly province of Cukurova and the adventures of being young back in the day! It is amazing to think of the taste buds as being a transport back in time and memory, and that’s exactly what that dining experience was. Thank you, Istanbul House! Thank you, Seven Days!
[Re “Post-Bop Mortem,”  June 13]: I think as a listener Mr. Bolles may have been obtuse, but I believe the word he was looking for when describing Mr. Konitz’s playing was “abstruse.”
New York, N.Y.
What Image Problem?
I was surprised to read in your headline that the Community Health Centers has an image problem [“Burlington’s New, Improved Public Health Clinic Still Has an Image Problem,”  June 20]! According to whom? The one patient you cited did not give any evidence and said that she was pleased with her care there. As a physician in the community (who is not employed by the CHC), I have nothing but the highest regard for the well-qualified staff who work there, including board-certified family physicians who offer care from the prenatal level to end of life. I was fortunate to do some of my training at the CHC, which provided me with an insider’s view. Now I sometimes care for CHC patients after hours at the Fanny Allen Walk-In Care Center, which is open evenings and weekends, so I can attest that the CHC patients receive excellent, up-to-date medical care. My friends who are patients at the CHC tell me that they appreciate the privacy, sensitivity and full spectrum of services. We should all be so lucky as to get this good-quality medical care from our chosen “providers.” I hope your next article will express more of a sense of legitimate pride in Burlington’s Community Health Centers.
Joanna Weinstock, MD
Whose Side Is He On?
Jeff Wennberg tries very hard to appear as the voice of reason and caution [“Some Vermonters Are Trying to Stop Health Care Reform — One Metaphor at a Time,”  June 13]. That’s a hard sell, however, when his group’s acknowledgment that our system needs serious reform came only after his editorials and media releases were soundly skewered for defending the current system.
The fact that he and his group also misrepresent many of the health care “studies” they cite as reasons to be scared of the planned reforms doesn’t help the image, either.
Wennberg’s claims that “90 percent” of his group’s donors are Vermonters really tells us nothing about where the majority of funding comes from. The “10 percent” of donors from out of state could be supplying 99 percent of the funds, for all we know.
From my perspective, it appears that Wennberg is dedicated to stopping serious health care reform, period. Whatever rationale will accomplish that is the rationale that Vermonters for Health Care Freedom will offer.
Good Review, Bad Plan
An excellent review of the meeting [“Some Vermonters Are Trying to Stop Health Care Reform — One Metaphor at a Time,” June 13]. H.559 is far too ideological. Single payer can be organized, as it is in many countries, using private entities. Vermont’s notion of requiring it to be handled by government bureaucrats is somewhat of an outlier among 50 or so countries dealing with modern health systems, and seems to derive from personal animus certain legislators had against insurance companies. H.559 also forbids some of the market-based methods of reducing duplication or overutilization of services proven successful in other jurisdictions, and so seems bound to fail.
Shields is the president of the Ethan Allen Institute.
Good article on the upcoming Chittenden County Senate race [“Sweet 17? A Readers Guide to the Crowded Chittenden County Senate Race,”  June 20]. It’s truly sad when one thinks about how disproportionate our representation really is in Montpelier. We have two separate bodies, yet both are based upon population density. Kind of like Tweedledee and Tweedledum. There is effectively no balance. Think where our U.S. Congressional stance would be if the U.S. were similarly proportioned. So here we have Essex County represented by a senator who lives in Orleans County, and Grand Isle County represented by a senator who lives in Chittenden County. And six senators in Chittenden County. What kind of madness is that?!
Should we the people of Vermont revolt against such insanity, we could create a Senate that has two senators from each of the 14 counties, and maybe someday the Northeast Kingdom and other lightly populated areas could get an equal voice. Chances of that happening are zero. Or are they?
Do we really need to give any of the lazy, arrogant idiots who hang out in front of Radio Bean a bigger and more useless head than they already have [Daysies 2012 ballot, June 6, 13 and 20]? Hippest hipster? C’mon Seven Days! You’ve got better sense than that.
Rock, Paper, Starlight
I am so happy to have read the “Party on the Trails”  piece in last week’s issue. Pierre Couture of the Millstone Trails Association worked magic in the woods of Barre Town Saturday. A combination of the area’s beauty, perfect weather, skilled performers and artists, blazing starlight, and a huge effort provided attendees a sense of wonder and peace. The Rockfire experience that night began with the lighting of bonfires and pipers marching into the field, lead by torchlight. We followed them to the beginning of a trail where they formed two columns. Passing between the columns and that ancient sound felt like being launched into the starry skies. The trail was lined with thousands of candles — candles in rock crannies and bonfires along the way provided naturally perfect illumination for the walk. Stops along the way for gazing into the depths of a quarry at night, dancing to a fiddler’s music, viewing quality art installations, the eerie sounds of a fire organ, even opera through the trees. Wow, multisensory bliss! All this ended with sending a fire-lit paper lantern floating into the heavens. We returned home very happy to have been a part of this festival. I hope it becomes a yearly fundraiser for such a worthy association.
Thank you to all the people and the incredible effort made to pull this off so skillfully. The people of Barre Town must be very proud.
I respond to [Poli Psy: “Put the ‘Sex’ Back in ‘Homosexual,’”  June 20] as an out-and-proud queer who lives in rural Vermont, where my partner and I get “looks” every time I walk out the door — and those looks vary considerably from curiosity to hatred. Why do I live in Vermont? Well, sometimes I wonder. I love its beauty, but Vermont isn’t so liberal, folks. I am not sure why a heterosexual woman who doesn’t mention until well into the article that she identifies as such, and who obviously knows little of the intricacies of being queer, is writing this article.
I got excited to see a photo of a rainbow flag in the paper, but when I read the article, I nodded to myself and said, Yup, another hetero Vermonter pretending to understand the queer Vermont experience. She got it all wrong. Sex is a part of all intimate partnerships, in some way. The author has no idea just how powerful it is to have the president change his mind about gay marriage, watch “don’t ask, don’t tell” be repealed or hear any other mention of queerness in the news. She also doesn’t know how it feels to walk around queer in Vermont.
For years, Pride has not been well attended, and First Friday at Higher Ground has become a hetero, not-so-welcome-to-queers event. Slowly some queer events are emerging — organized by brave people, thank you. There is no sex in the Pride event because even holding hands in downtown Burlington is a painful experience, let alone a quick kiss. Being queer is not all about sex, contrary to popular belief. Please don’t pretend you understand our experience, which varies in as many ways as there are queer people. Next time the paper talks about something queer, have someone queer write it. I am not ashamed of my hers-and-hers kayaks on the top of my Subaru, and I am not going to attend Pride to display my sex to anyone. I will attend to enjoy one event of the year where I can be in my community.
The lesbian couple featured in Ken Picard’s June 13 cover story, “Birth Rights,”  placed a Seven Days personal ad — seeking a sperm donor — that ran on October 9, 2002. However, that issue actually contained two personals ads from different civil-union couples seeking sperm donors; our story quoted the wrong one. The correct ad read: “Lesbian CU wanting children. Need a man who wants a non-parental role. This is a non-sexual adventure that could have its rewards. Serious individuals only.”
In last week’s “Sweet 17? A Readers Guide to the Crowded Chittenden County Senate Race,” reporter Paul Heintz wrote that Burlington City Councilor Ed Adrian, who is running for state Senate, heads the Vermont Secretary of State’s Office of Professional Regulation. Adrian is the senior prosecutor in that office; Chris Winters is the director.
We regret the errors.