Newstalk – November 25
We here at The Somerville Times wish everyone a very happy Thanksgiving Day this week. This is a time for all of us to be grateful for what we have. To reflect on the many blessings we have, in family and friends.
Our View of the Times – November 25
Thanksgiving Day gives us that little nudge we sometimes need to take stock in what is most important for us and to share in the sense of appreciation that we feel amongst one another.
Some of us have it better than others, it goes without saying. Conversely, many of us may be struggling to simply make ends meet. One thing that unites us all in common spirit is the heartfelt acknowledgement of what we do have to be grateful for.
Shop local first, and shop local last this holiday season – and all year
By Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone
Ideally Thanksgiving should be a time for friends and family, and for reaching out to help others. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t live a hectic life. Taking a day or a long weekend to connect with the things that really matter is an important thing to do. Life will zip past you if you let it. Yet, as our televisions, mailboxes and email accounts constantly remind us, Thanksgiving also marks the official start of the holiday shopping season. Doesn’t matter what your religion is, chances are you’re about to do some serious spending. I’ll be out shopping too. So as we Somervillians hit the stores, I want to encourage everyone to spend that money locally, right here in Somerville.
Newstalk – November 18
City Hall rolled out its new website not to long ago, and although we didn’t see much difference at first glance, one of our Newstalkers went online to pay a Traffic & Parking ticket and couldn’t do it. They then called the department, and at first the young lady who answered the phone was extremely helpful and explained that, yes, there were some problems but she worked him through it. Then another Newstalker wanted to download election results and again ran into a problem. Half the page came out black. So we’re wondering how much did this version cost? We heard it’s like the third version done, and what was the cost? Maybe before they roll out a website, they might want to get some testers involved.
Our View of the Times – November 18
Is it just our imaginations, or are we experiencing an alarming up-tick in the number of thefts in the city?
It seems as though car break-ins and other forms of petty larceny are at an all time high. Why is this so? Most people we hear from are blaming the drug problem – specifically opioids abuse – for the sudden surge in crime.
Fossil fuels are bad investment for the future of our finances and our planet
By Joseph A. Curtatone
The saying goes, “first they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” According to that timeline, it appears that we’re in the third stage of the movement to divest from fossil fuel companies. Opponents argue that fossil fuel divestment is a poor financial strategy, or make straw man arguments about the unfeasibility of immediately ending fossil fuel use or investments. Simple research shows that these arguments are unfounded, and I stand by my call for the Somerville Retirement Board to divest from fossil fuel companies.
Newstalk – November 11
First of all, we want to thank all active duty service men and women and all our veterans, who fought for our freedom to live in this great country of ours. God bless you all and thank you for your service. A ceremony honoring them will be held this morning at Dilboy Post in Cutter Square at 10 a.m. Then join Historic Somerville and representatives from the City of Somerville at 2:30 pm, for a Veterans’ Day Remembrance Ceremony at Milk Row Cemetery (next to Market Basket). Local members of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company of Massachusetts will conduct a ceremony to remember those veterans from Somerville who are buried and memorialized in this hallowed ground.
Our View of the Times – November 11
We see them every year and we regard them with awe and deepest admiration. Stoic and humble in countenance, they seem to simply play their part in our ritualistic celebration of their courageous contributions to the well being of our nation. The well being of ourselves as a society.
The flesh and blood reality is even more awe-inspiring as we realize how fragile life truly is, and yet these brave men and women each took a stand and declared that no harm should come to their fellow countrymen. Not on their watch.
Remembering Somerville heroes of The Great War on Veterans Day
By Joseph A. Curtatone
This week we celebrate Veterans Day, honoring all who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces, but this day had another name in the past. Veterans Day began as Armistice Day to mark the end of fighting in World War I at the eleventh hour, on the eleventh day, of the eleventh month. So it’s appropriate that our annual memorial service held with the Somerville Allied Veterans Council takes place at the Dilboy VFW Post, which is named after Somerville resident George Dilboy, who fought and died in World War I and received the Medal of Honor. Dilboy’s story is well-known in our community, with the stadium named after him and his memorial that sits outside City Hall, but this Veterans Day, I’d like to highlight some other Somervillians who served our nation in WWI, The Great War.
Who pays the piper calls the tune
By William C. Shelton
Most of its content consists of worthwhile design and policy ideas that incorporate every new-urbanist virtue as well as concerns expressed by neighbors over the last year. The redesign of Union Square’s streets is particularly good.
Newstalk – November 4
There was an extremely low turnout on Election Day yesterday. What with the lack of candidates who wanted to run and the general feeling out there that most people here are not interested in city government, what do you think is the problem? Not that long ago we would have multiple office seekers in every ward and for At Large, but for some reason the citywide elections are of no concern to most folks. So the other day we asked what was the difference in enrollment here in the city. In 2006, according to the election department at City Hall, there were 20,167 registered Democrats, 14,919 registered Independents and 2,247 registered Republicans. This year there are 23,509 registered Democrats, 19,170 registered Independents and 1,817 registered Republicans. A big increase of registered Independents as well as an increase in registered Democrats. In a city of about 75,000 residents, we have a total of 44,496 registered voters and yet fewer than 8% voted. There are times we think that elected city officials owe it to the public to get more participation, especially in our local city government. Don’t you agree?