[Re "'Til Death Do Us Part"]: I still have a copy of the October 11 Seven Days on my table: It features the sweet photo of Molly McLain, who, one learns upon reading Mark Davis' excellent article, was camouflaging the bruises around her left eye that she received from a punch by her husband some weeks before he killed her and himself.
I'd like to give a paean of praise to mothers-in-law, especially the mother-in-law in this case. A woman's mother is often her best friend and protector when a marriage turns sour. For some reason, many men feel a need to control their wives, and, in the process, they become hostile toward their mothers-in-laws. Check out the more than 20,000,000 nasty jokes on the internet about mothers-in-laws that mostly men enjoy.
The amount of rage Molly's husband felt toward his mother-in-law — blaming her for his murder of her daughter and his own suicide — is an example of misogynist mania in the extreme.
I offer my deep sympathies to Amy Benoit and hope that, in recovering from this tragedy, she will know that she did the best she could for the daughter she loved.
Questions About BT
[Re Off Message: "City Council to Decide Burlington Telecom Process — Again," November 13]: Could someone in the know please answer these questions: How much money does BT owe, and to whom? If BT owes $14 million to, say, Citibank, and we sell it to the Canadians for $30.5 million, does that mean we will get the difference of $16.5 million?
If BT owes, say, $30 million, and we sell it to Keep BT Local for $12, will we, the city, be on the hook for $18 million?
The original deal was that Burlington taxpayers would not have to shoulder any BT cost. Then we had to cough up $17 million, which has yet to be paid back. Why, oh, why should we do anything but get that financial hole filled and leave the digitizing to the people who do it for a living?
If we municipalize internet servitude, should we not also liberate other providers of goods and services such as bakeries, auto parts stores and pharmacies? Why should we stop with web access providers? It seems like the logic of "Don't trust those darned capitalists with our internet access" should apply to all for-profit activities.
People's Republic Q-Tips, anyone?
[Re Fair Game: "Capitol Offense," November 22]: Thank you for persisting in this story when no other news organization would. I'm sure there is still more to be told. Whether it will be or not is the question. Many thanks to the women who did speak up; it's way past time for this behavior to be exposed and called out. Kudos on the excellent reporting.
[Re Fair Game: "Capitol Offense," November 22]: Names. We need names. Powerful men in the legislature? As far as I can see, they are not powerful; they are pitiful if they abuse women. Give the public names, and the voters will drain that swamp. As long as we have no transparency, this will go on and on. There are more than a few who think that they are anointed and privileged. They aren't.
One for Al
[Re 802Much: "Frankly Speaking," November 22]: I worked very closely with Al Franken on "Saturday Night Live" for five seasons. He is a wonderfully smart and creative comic force. He was always great to work with in the wee hours as we created show openings like his Stuart Smalley segment. I have to assume from what I have witnessed recently that he brings the same tireless work ethic that he had at "SNL" to his exciting work as a U.S. senator. This recent attempt to take him down is careless and stinks of self-promotion. Perhaps Al should call up Stuart Smalley's famous quote: "I'm good enough. I'm smart enough. And doggone it, people like me!" Stay strong, Al!
[Re "Last Supper? The Man Behind the 'Meals,'" November 22]: I have subbed on occasion as a driver-runner, and the lead guy I drive with has, on occasion, called Peter Carmolli when we can't raise the client and there's no note. He gets on it immediately and fills us in on what he found out the next time he sees us. That level of care and compassion cannot be factored into a cost-based analysis by governmental bodies. That's a shame, because it is of incredible value to the community and to the people who get the meals to have such a guardian angel at work for them. I hope the powers that be find a way to keep this team in the game.
Thanks for 'Meals'
Your November 22 article — "Last Supper? The Man Behind the 'Meals'" — published the day before Thanksgiving, tells the story of a community and a leader taking care of its own, nurturing both the recipients of good meals and those who prepare and deliver them.
We don't need fewer Peter Carmollis. We need more.
When we give thanks for our blessings this week, a special thanks to Peter, his staff and the many volunteers who have been feeding body and soul these many years with heart and, yes, efficiency, too.
[Re "Cannabis Calling," November 8]: For all the folks leery of Dr. Bob Melamede's "claims," I'd suggest they read/google "U.S. Patent 6630507," granted by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and also the research at the very end of the application. See for yourself. There's none so blind as one who will not see — or look. I emailed the same to many Vermont legislators who apparently thought it too long and/or complicated to bother, but yes, it's all there, yet the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration doesn't seem to read government publications from other governmental departments. Go figure!
Holly Mugford is a music teacher at Rochester School. Her name was misspelled in last week's story, "Last Gasp? How a Vermont High School Ended Up With Just Two Students."