Congratulations, Vermont

The Joint Chiefs of Bluegrass play the state house

The Joint Chiefs of Bluegrass play the state house

Well done!  You squeaked right in there with one extra to spare, but now it’s official — it’s in the New York Times.

Finally finished what we started in 2000.  Only this time hopefully there will be less Take Back Vermont signs.  While I think that the “take back Vermont” movement was a little bit more complex than just plain old homophobia, it was a major factor and the catalyst, and the remaining signs that are still up around the Northeast Kingdom make me sad.  Start articulating your many valid feelings about how Vermont is changing without connecting them to the struggle for equal rights of other people.

That time was also a catalyst for me, in a political way.  I was a high school student in the NEK and what I did to express my opinions about the bill, well, I’m still keeping it a secret.

If you want to read about this sort of two-Vermont divide, which is more recently dividing the Northeast Kingdom over wind-towers (arguably this issue is maybe even more complex), you can read Paul Searls’ book:

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A hundred years ago, but about the same thing, which he calls “uphill” and “downhill” Vermonters, and how their identities were opposed in many ways on axes of modernity, political participation, land use, and culture.  It’s a good book, but I disagree with Searls — mostly because I don’t buy into the idea of using two opposing categories as a way to understand identity.  It doesn’t allow for people who don’t fit into either category to be included, and those people always exist — to begin with the Abenakis, African-Americans, and other immigrants in Vermont who don’t fit into those.  And I just think things are more complex than that.  Right now, in Vermont, things are certainly far more complex than that.  Though admittedly, when you look at the role-call for who voted today, it’s hard to resist a binary!

So for added complexity, I suppose you could also read this book by David Moats, who won a Pulitzer for his coverage of the Civil Unions fight in 2000 in the Rutland Herald.

Anyway, I’m just sitting here in Vermont, appropriately drinking some Celebration Love tea from the VT Love & Tea Company.

It’s time for celebrating, and it just makes me so happy!!!!!!!!

Now we really, really need some instant runoff voting in our state elections to get Douglas out of office.

(Photo is from here, where he also refers to Hardwick as “Little Chicago”)

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