The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, December 15, 2000

Editorial page should welcome controversy

To the Editor:

I concur with the letters to the editor in the December 8 issue which stated that it was appropriate for Jayne Prats to criticize, in a "Forum" article, the Bike and Pedestrian Safety Committee's survey. The value of articles such as Prats'regardless of her point of viewis great, especially for a small town and a small-town newspaper.

The Carlisle Mosquito, like most small-town newspapers, contains little on its opinion-editorial page that might contribute to a healthy discussion of important issues. The newspaper's staff, and most letter-writers, tread lightly over controversy. After all, those whom we would criticize are our neighbors. (It's a bit easier for a Boston Globe writer, who is largely anonymous by the very nature of the huge metropolitan area that newspaper covers, to offer a point of view. That writer doesn't see you and me at the transfer station.)

We need viewpoints, no matter how much we may disagree with them. It's fine to have letters to the editor that thank people, and editorials and "Forum" pieces that wax poetic about living in Carlisle. Perhaps they build town spirit and help us all get along. But my eyes, and I suspect those of many other people, tend to glaze over when I see so much of this type of material. On the other hand, my interest in town affairs perks up when I read a well-reasoned argument. Often, such commentary helps me better understand issues and form my opinions. It's stimulatingand entertaining. Unfortunately, there is too little of it in our town newspaper.

No town group, official or candidate for officevolunteer or paidshould be immune to criticism in the Carlisle Mosquito. Yes, such criticism should be rational and never mean-spirited. But when you join a public group or run for office, you stick your neck out. Criticism is part of the deal. We all hope it doesn't scare off good volunteers, but if it does, that isn't a reason for squelching the opinions of our newspaper writers.

The best defense against criticism is to do your work very well. And as Jayne Prats wrote, the Bike and Safety Committee clearly did not. They needed to hear what Prats had to say.

Steve Kendall
Cross Street

Driver response for COA overwhelming

To the Editor:

I am writing to publicly thank each and every one who called in reference to the Council on Aging's plea for Friendly Drivers and Friendly Visitors.

The response was overwhelming and heartwarming! It is wonderful to have so many volunteer their time to help out the senior citizens of Carlisle.

Thank you again and Happy Holidays!

Susan Evans
COA Outreach Coordin

Time capsule update

To the Editor:

Are you wondering about the time capsule buried near the Highland School building in 1983? Well, the year 2000 has come and gone and it remains buried. Let's try for 2001. Please contact me if you want to know more.

Sally Milliken

Thanks from Library Friends

To the Editor:

Thanks to all the Friends, old and new, who came to the First Annual Holiday Hors d'hoevres Exchange. Homemade goodies, great recipes and holiday ideas were shared by the group. Our appreciation again to all who helped get this new Carlisle tradition started.

Theresa Kvietkauskas
President, Friends of the Gleason Public Library

2000 The Carlisle Mosquito