Forum for June 7, 2024: Lebanon’s dog days

Published: 06-07-2024 3:45 PM

Dog days of summer start early in Lebanon

With the arrival of warmer weather and open windows, it would behoove the dog owners of Lebanon (and of Bank Street in particular) to bear in mind that your neighbors are probably not as utterly oblivious to the yapping of your dim-witted and likely neglected cur(s) as you give every evidence of being. But then the first rule of pet ownership — that the owner should be more intelligent than the pet — has always been the least-observed one.

Anthony Stimson

Lebanon

Letter on Hanover meeting was unfair

In her letter to the Valley News (“No room for election interference”; May 18), Nancy Welch unfairly attacks a member of our community. Moreover, she disingenuously questions the experience of countless Jewish and other Americans, including those who spoke at Hanover Town Meeting about their own experiences of being intimidated and afraid on account of their faith or views on the Israel-Gaza War.

I sat about six rows directly behind the ballot box at Hanover Town Meeting. In her letter, Welch states she was “grateful” that the Valley News printed a photograph of Dartmouth professor Sergei Kan and Sharon Racusin. She states that she was “appalled and frightened at this instance of voter intimidation” and even characterizes Kan’s interaction with Racusin as involving “physical and verbal accosting.”

In contrast, the Valley News wrote: “Racusin said she knows Kan, who was attending the meeting as an observer, through the Upper Valley Jewish community to which they both belong and was taken aback by his comments, in which he criticized her for bringing forward a cease-fire resolution.” The article did not mention voter intimidation let alone physical altercation, nor was Kan apparently asked for comment. According to Kan, he spoke with Racusin during a break in the voting and did not threaten or touch her.

What Welch writes next is more offensive. She suggests that pro-Palestinian protests “may create” discomfort and fear among Jewish students and community members. Did she listen to residents who spoke about their experience here since Oct. 7? About chants calling for intifada and the end of the Jewish State? That fear, intimidation, and, at times, antisemitism is real. We shouldn’t deny it.

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Welch might consider apologizing to Kan for mischaracterizing his conversation at Town Meeting. But she should absolutely apologize to those Jewish students and others in our community whose experience she calls into question.

Luke Kraus

Hanover

Right wing leader
comes down on Gaza

I haven’t heard anyone mention this yet, but it’s a right wing government in Israel causing this excessive killing in Palestine. Right wing ideologues use punishment and revenge in order to gain power. Historically, our government tends to back these autocrats. Why? Because they create stability — good for business but intimidating to citizens. Protesting this war is not antisemitic. It is right to be alarmed, to protest and hopefully to create a venue for discussion.

Nancy Wightman

Cornish