‘Ashamed and Angry’
To the editor:
I have spent the past two days assisting older Eastham residents with the upcoming vaccine clinic here in conjunction with our local council on aging.
Tuesday’s online registration was a disgrace. The local site was not listed until 15 minutes after the proposed start time, and, in a matter of moments, all 300 spots were filled. The website is not accessible to many of our most vulnerable residents, and, for some, it is completely foreign.
Many of our seniors do not own computers. Many are hard of hearing and phone use can be challenging. Many live alone or function as caregivers for ill spouses. Transportation difficulties multiply for every five miles beyond home they must travel. Many are isolated and frightened.
I will not sleep tonight knowing that, as a state, we have let down our most vulnerable people who, for their entire lives, have played by the rules and made vast contributions to their communities. I am ashamed and angry that this rollout has failed at the most basic levels to create a process that understands the unique needs of our seniors.
This is a dangerous and urgent situation. As the virus continues to spread, our seniors grow increasingly concerned, and our entire community is put at risk.
Why are vaccines not getting to Cape Cod? Why are we not engaging the bright minds of our state to put together a plan that reflects reality? The vaccines must be brought closer to our residents in quantities that will enable vaccinations at a faster rate. The signup process must become senior friendly.
Our seniors, and our communities, are waiting and watching.
Paula Schiavone Bruns
A ‘False Equivalency’
To the editor:
Dave Marro exhibits the typical persecution complex of those who are prevented from expressing propaganda as fact [“A View From the Right,” Letters, Feb. 4]. Resistant to information that allows for differing conclusions, they blindly accept the party line fed by Fox News.
Violence was present at last summer’s mostly peaceful protests, but, by and large, the violence was a result of heavy-handed police intervention. There is no equivalency between the summer’s violence and what happened on Jan. 6. Nowhere did Black Lives Matter protesters or organizers plan an attack on a government body with intent to overthrow democracy or murder elected officials.
The irrational belief in the influence of Antifa is widely discredited, unless of course one watches only Fox News. There is, however, firm evidence of many white supremacist groups who seek civil war, while Antifa remains unstructured, decentralized, and leaderless. It is not hypocritical to recognize the false equivalency that makes Antifa as dangerous as the organized, armed groups of Proud Boys and Oath Keepers who invaded the Capitol and continue to threaten democracy.
It is unclear why Mr. Marro brings up Fox News claims that the summer protests were “the most costly in U.S. history.” There have never been figures for multi-state civic unrest before. Fox uses out-of-context, and therefore meaningless, facts to trigger outrage and manipulate viewers. Six days of unrest in 1992 Los Angeles alone caused $1.4 billion in damage in 2020 dollars, according to Axios. It is the cause of such riots, not just their cost, that is most relevant.
One hopes that when Mr. Marro visits our open and tolerant community and reads a truly fair and balanced news source such as yours, it might help him to understand the world outside the Fox News universe. Sadly, I doubt he wants that.
Peake and Transparency
To the editor:
Re “Peake Comes Out Swinging on Rule Reform” (Jan. 28, page 1):
During her conversation with a group of her constituents on Zoom, Rep. Sarah Peake explained that she cannot support the three transparency items that we would like to see added to the House’s rules. They are: public access both to committee votes and to votes on the House floor, extended time for reading bills from 24 to 72 hours, and lowering the number of representatives (from 16 to 8) needed to require a recorded roll-call vote on a bill.
Rep. Peake said she opposed these rule changes because her colleagues would not like them.
Perhaps Rep. Peake would be willing to do an experiment. She could send out two identical polls — one to her colleagues in the House and the other to her constituents — asking them to vote aye (in favor of the three provisions) or nay (opposed to them). It would be instructive to see whether the members of the House and the voters of her Lower and Outer Cape district share the same opinion on this matter.
More Thank Yous
To the editor:
I enjoyed “The Art of the Handwritten Thank You” by Heidi Daniels [Jan. 7, page 14]. I don’t like an email thank you.
I’m left-handed, and when I was a child they forced me to write right-handed, so I wrote mirror-writing. In other words, backwards. The teacher had to take every paper of mine to a mirror to read it. She gave me an F. (So much for my self-esteem.)
Plus, in those days, we used real ink. I had to write with my arm way above my paper so as not to smear it. I have to print my thank yous so my friends can read them.
I taught my children to write thank yous when they were young. My son, David, worked on a farm in Pennsylvania after college. His tractor got stuck in a ditch and he had to ask a farmer to help him out. Then he said, “How much do I owe you?” The farmer said, “Nothing, because I may need you next week.”
My son wrote him a thank you. The farmer was so taken aback, his wife sent over an apple pie, then cookies, and they became friends. All because of a thank you.
Thank you for your paper. It is the most interesting and diverse paper on the Cape.