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Commentary

Without transparency, retreat aims to reshape village

The following is a summary and a time line of what happened during and after the infamous “board retreat” based on emails exchanged shortly after. Worth mentioning is that “retreats” can be held outside the Open Meetings Law only without intent to conduct public business, for the ...

When is it perfect for a picnic?

When I was ready to double-check my writing with the internet, I discovered there was no National Picnic Day anywhere near this time. It’s observed on April 23 (which is usually far too chilly) with the international day set for June 18. What was I thinking? The reply to this (assuring me I ...

Making waves over Chautauqua Pops

While the controversy has apparently been settled, I still found the recent story about the problems of the Chautauqua Lake Pops Concert Series intriguing because it combined many elements of a good story. As the story goes, four individuals filed a lawsuit against the promoters of the ...

Navigating life in the decaf lane

It’s been many years since I’ve written about coffee – years since my doctor at the time said, “No more. You’re done with caffeine.” He might as well have shot me. He took away my daily infusion for energy, clear thinking and well-being. I needed it every morning. I loved it, ...

Flood young children with language

CHAUTAUQUA – When this columnist was a newspaper reporter, he did a 22-part series letting teachers of all sorts share their thoughts on, and approaches to, the profession. It was fun just to let teachers open up. In their own ways, they all did. A local reading teacher advised reading to ...

Voting rights fight seems undemocratic

Call me naive, but I’ve never quite gotten why some politicians want to limit voters’ ability to cast their ballots. Sure, I know that plenty of people like to flip the classic Clausewitz quote and say that politics is war by other means. All’s fair, etc., they insist. But the ...