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Reid is running for Selectman

To the Editor:

Please allow me to introduce myself; my name is Kate Reid. I am running for Selectman because I think that we are extremely fortunate to be one of the last bastions of true, small “d,” democracy. 

I have had many years of experience on the planning boards of both Concord and Carlisle in addition to serving on the Concord Public and Concord-Carlisle Regional School Committees.

You need both experience and vision when you reach for the stars. I am a strong advocate of master planning to help articulate the town’s vision. You have to take action when you have the stars within your grasp.

You can learn more about me, find a contact link and a schedule of “Meet and Greets” that several of your friends and neighbors have offered to host between now and the election on my website: katereid.org.

I hope to see or hear from you and that you will cast your vote for me for Carlisle Town Selectman on June 13.

Kate Reid

Carleton Road

Never take tolerance for granted

To the Editor:

I wanted to write in and thank Sally Naumann of Lowell street for expressing her homophobic views in the Carlisle Mosquito (Apr-28th-2017). I also wanted to thank the Carlisle Mosquito editorial staff for publishing her letter instead of suppressing it.

Why? Because it has called the town to action and reminded us that sometimes we get complacent and take tolerance for granted. We mistakenly assume that everyone living in Carlisle in 2017 is warm, welcoming and inclusive. But clearly it is not so.

However, I was thrilled to see the response of the town being a proliferation of rainbow flags. I got two myself and proudly propped them on my property. While there will always be residents who are anti-homosexual, anti-immigrant, anti-black or some anti-some-other-group, we must take heart in the fact that most of the town is decidedly not. I would encourage other inclusive residents to also proudly express their tolerance by displaying the rainbow flag—a universal symbol of love, peace and tolerance.

Vibhu Walia

West Street

Support for letters, dismay at Town Meeting

To the Editor: 

I fully support this week’s responders to Sally Naumann. The Mosquito should absolutely have published her letter but, extending the hate speech test that was suggested, substituted “homosexual” with “minority group frequently targeted by haters.” Mrs. Naumann then has an opportunity to rant without offending a specific minority group. And townspeople can still contemplate why one of our citizens would write such a distasteful letter.

Similarly, “ugly symbol frequently used by haters” would have conveyed all I needed to know about the swastika graffiti at CCHS. Despite enormous resources put into our schools, with wonderful outcomes for most students, we still have at least one disaffected teenager lashing out. Why?

I was disappointed that the community center feasibility study failed at Town Meeting. $20,000 is short money to encourage and leverage the invaluable volunteerism the town currently enjoys. And I think we need a community center.

John Bakewell

Rutland Street

Spiritual leaders support LGBT people

To the Editor:

This is in response to Sally Naumann’s April 28 letter. The rainbow flag symbolizes respect and acceptance, to which members of the LGBT community are entitled. It represents solidarity and support among LGBT people, their families and allies. It is a form of free speech. 

We all have the right to express our opinions in our town and in our country. My hope is that the foundation for expressed opinions is informed by research of valid sources combined with

thoughtful consideration. 

Because of the jeopardy LGBT people face because of who they are,  many spiritual and thought leaders have voiced their support, including Desmond Tutu, the Dalai Lama, Nelson Mandela and Pope Francis who, in 2013, stated his position on the suitability of gay priests in the Catholic Church: “Who am I to judge?”

Conversely, leaders and organizations that have stigmatized and supported the marginalization of LGBT people include the John Birch Society, Vladimir Putin (related to his denials of torture of gays in Chechnya), Breitbart.com and Steve Bannon,  Kellyanne Conway and in, by far, the most horrific example, Nazi Germany. 

Regarding the writer’s contention that “homosexuality is a behavior; no one is born homosexual,” an increasing number of scientific studies of endocrine, genetic and neurological development strongly suggest physical and in utero brain development determine sexual orientation.  

Reading well-sourced, well-researched publications on the topic may help you be on the “right” side of this debate—the side that employs scientific and cultural facts combined with an open mind. 

Ms. Naumann, on which side will you stand?

Annie Jackson Hill

Buttrick Lane

Gender-altering is natural

To the Editor:

With great sadness I read Sally Naumann’s letter regarding rainbow flags. First of all rainbows have been a symbol for many groups before (one for a religious retreat at St. Basil’s in the ’90s). Any Rainbow is a beautiful sight.

Fifty years ago I brought the first racially mixed child into Carlisle and I experienced great prejudice. My child, and then my second child, experienced it including name calling and being beaten up when very young. My older daughter became their protector. A year later another child (Native American) was adopted by another family across town.  Since then it has brought great joy for me to see diversity in many areas.

As someone who has raised many animals and birds over the years (and majored in biology and pre-med) it may surprise some to know this occurs in animals and birds as well. Check National Geographic on seven gender-altering animals (Sept. 2013).

Joan Parker

Russell Street

Bringing these issues to light is good

To the Editor:

It must be spring because the forsythia is blooming, the mosquitos are back and Sally Naumann has once again written to the Mosquito. 

I support the Mosquito’s decision to print the letter from Sally Naumann. I would have put it on page 2 rather than on page 22. Although we have made much progress, prejudice, sadly, is everywhere. It is only by exposing it to the light of day that we can hope to defeat it. Left in the shadows, we are lulled into complacency. We cannot combat what we cannot see and the Mosquito is playing a vital part in the democratic process.

I see Ms. Naumann’s letter for what it is. It is not polite. It is intolerant, prejudiced and malicious veiled beneath a thin veneer of civility. I doubt that I will ever be able to change the opinions of Ms. Naumann, but I do believe that through discussion and engagement, there are many others whose opinions I might impact.

My husband and I left the relative safety of Boston’s South End for the wilds of Carlisle 14 years ago with our three children and dog in tow. We found a place where we were welcomed: as school volunteers, as carpool drivers, as play date hosts, as the sole chaperone for the Brownie Troop overnight at the Museum of Science. We were not the first gay couple to call Carlisle home and I am happy to see that we have more company than we did in 2003. To all newcomers, you made the right choice in selecting Carlisle as your home. 

Thank you to all of our friends, neighbors and strangers who responded with letters of support and for planting more rainbow flags. When my kids were younger, they had competitions to see who could spot the most flags. After the Pulse Nightclub shooting last year, my son helped me to source what might be the largest flag. The voice of Ms. Naumann saddens me but the voices of all those who stood in opposition give me hope.

Be visible, get involved and engage in debate.

Dan Jacques

Indian Hill

Questions the Mosquito’s morals

To the Editor:

Once again, I find inappropriate material printed in our town paper. 

I can’t begin to clarify how disappointed I am in this paper. There have been multiple incidents of inappropriate material being printed, which makes me question the morals of the Mosquito.

Your most recent publishing of a letter to the editor directly violates your own policy on such letters (which I have included for your reference). The letter regarding the flying of the Rainbow flag is completely in poor taste as well as libelous. As such, this should not have been published in the paper at all. 

You need to start being more cognizant of the material you publish. You are supporting some very hateful commentary. 

Lynette Kelleher

Rutland Street

Rainbow flags brought tears

To the Editor:

I grew up on a small farm in Pennsylvania. There is something forgiving about pastoral surroundings and working with animals and plants—they accept you just the way you are. I was a girl who identified as a boy, and at the end of each school day, I longed to return to my agrarian sanctuary, where woods, fields, streams and trails offered solace and space for reflection. There, I gathered the strength to begin a path to manhood— one that differs from most.  

When I bought my first home three years ago, the fields, woods, trails and wildlife of Carlisle welcomed me home. The soil has more sand than the dark dirt of my youth, and winters are longer, but tucked in all directions of this deeply familiar landscape was a visceral, comforting sense of belonging. The rich scenery and the sounds of tractors, chickens, frogs, owls and coyotes are joyful reminders of places where I once stood, alone, bravely contemplating my future. Today, I celebrate the personal and professional journeys that cut a path to this piece of heaven. 

I could hardly hold back tears when I saw many rainbow flags flying around town. To see them in numbers, over the green grass, gardens and gates of a town I have cherished since the day I arrived, is moving. Indeed, the rhetoric that prompted their display was profoundly unsettling. But I would like to express sincere gratitude and appreciation for the community’s gestures of care and respect for residents like me.  In a new way, I am reminded that I am home.

Kelly C. Heim

Curve Street

Free law work available through COA

To the Editor:  

If you as a Carlisle Senior don’t have a Health Care Proxy or a Living Will now is the time to take advantage of a very generous offer: May is National Elder Law Month, and because of this, local Elder Law Attorney Linda Butterworth-Till has generously offered to prepare Health Care Proxies and Living Wills for the first ten Carlisleans who call the COA at 1-978-371-2895. If you don’t already have these documents, they are very important so please take advantage of this FREE and generous offer. Please call the COA at 1-978-371-2895 to register for an appointment.

Angela Smith

COA Outreach Coordinator and Program Manager