July 23, 2019

Letters to the Editor

Hens have no place in residential areas

I urge the Williston Selectboard to keep the current restrictions in place regarding chickens on parcels of less than one acre. There is a reason the restrictions are in place. Check out the website backyardhens.com and search for disease or rodent. It discusses the multitude of diseases chickens carry and talks about the rodents chickens draw.

Just a few weeks ago, a fox captured the ducklings a local family was raising. We do not want to draw dangerous wildlife to residential areas. We live too close to our neighbors to raise animals that should be kept in rural areas and on farms.

Please vote to keep the current restrictions on chickens in place.

Aleasha Boyd


Daycare enhances son’s growth

In the last two weeks, the Observer has received letters from two women shaming working moms (“Daycare can’t replace parenthood,” “Parenting as a priority”).

I am raising a precocious, silly kid who is deeply loved. During the week, he spends three days at daycare, one day with my parents and one day with me. I am lucky my child has a grandparent nearby, lucky to work for a flexible organization and lucky to have a daycare provider who hugs my baby close when he’s sad, notices and pays attention to the dynamic and interesting human being he is, respects his voice and gives him space to grow. My daycare provider is a superhero.

My husband and I have careers. We derive happiness from being productive workers and devoted parents. One of us could stay at home, but we don’t. Like most parents, we spend our days stressing and rethinking decisions. These letters had the opposite effect of what I believe was intended. They actually reinforced my belief that it’s not the quantity of time you spend with your kids, but rather the quality of time.

We provide our son with a community of our choosing. He spends his days with all types of people with vastly different opinions and ways of living. They nurture him, making him stronger and more resilient. We are all helping him build his understanding of the world and how he fits into it. He is given the opportunity to interact with people who don’t love him as deeply as we do, which helps him become better at empathizing and more tolerant of different opinions, something the authors of these letters are missing.

I agree that daycare does not replace parenthood. Who ever said it did? I identify myself as a mom. Last time I checked, I hadn’t given up my mom card to my daycare provider — although, some days I’m pretty sure she does a better job! I’m also sure she would teach my son that parent-shaming, or any kind of shaming, is not nice or productive.

No parent raises their kids in isolation. As long as we provide them with healthy opportunities to see and understand, it is no one’s business how we do it.

Abigail Trutor Mead


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