Middlebury Students Find Another Pipeline to Protest

This is what a natural gas pipeline looks like //Duke Energy

A natural gas pipeline runs through my neighborhood in Western New York. The only reason I know that is because, curious about the orange markers sticking out of the ground at a golf course we sometimes play at, I decided to check them out. There’s no obtrusive pipe sticking out of the ground. The same will be true of the pipeline that Vermont Gas would like to build through the state; it will be buried between three to five feet under the surface.

This is the type of project that is incredibly easy to oppose without an actual stake in the matter. As students we stand little to benefit from access to natural gas. But that does not mean we cannot understand the perspective of Vermont homeowners and business owners who see this pipeline as a way to both save money and use cleaner fuel. Continue reading

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Lessons from a Tragedy

It’s easy to think that the world is falling apart and closing in upon us. We hear of the threats from North Korea or bombs in downtown Boston and ask ourselves what the world has come to and how we can stop it. If the post-9/11 era can be defined by a feeling, it’s the feeling of vulnerability. Our enemies, it seems, are no longer defined by convenient borders and no longer wear uniforms on the battlefield. They are harder to identify and this terrifies us. We spend much of our lives fearing invisible foes.

Sometimes people respond to these threats by calling for constant monitoring. Sometimes people respond by contemplating moving to another town or another nation. Sometimes they arm themselves, discounting the far greater likelihood of an accident against the chance of a home invasion. All of these are the wrong lesson. We live in one of the safest parts of ones of the safest countries in the safest era of human history. Continue reading