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Letters to the Editor for February 17, 2022

Wed, 02/16/2022 - 17:10

Celebrate Love
East Hampton
February 14, 2022

Dear David,

We celebrate love today.

As a sister of Kevin Somers, I need to thank so many of you for the tremendous outpouring of love and support for my family after the loss of our dear brother, uncle, partner, and father. Please take this as a collective and heartfelt expression of our gratitude and appreciation.

Professionally, the teams at Bostwick’s and Debbie Geppert Catering were simply outstanding, and the Springs Fire Department graciously lent us the building for the reception. This paper, the police, ambulance members — invaluable during it all. Thank you L.J., Patty, and Natalie, our little angel team. Dee and John, your gift brightened my black night. Kristin, Terri, and Charlene — home crew always on call. The Osborne family — amazing, we love you!

My wonderful children, my siblings, cousins, friends, and extended family (Ryans, McGuires, Kerins, etc.) have been my buoy. This community, the anchor.

Kevin’s untimely and simply horrific death has left us all shaking our heads while holding our hearts. He had many international caddies that he mentored and became friends with, so this shock and grief extends far beyond our little town’s borders — a testament to Kevin’s spirit, character, and love. Many Maidstone members themselves came out and waited on the long lines to extend their condolences at the services. Yardley and Pino was great.

We will miss Kevin every single day. I thank each and every one of you who contacted us, called, texted, shared on social media, dropped off food and care packages, and donated to the Kevin Somers Scholarship Fund. These tangible expressions extended to us have accompanied the intangible and immeasurable feeling of support, sharing our grief, right alongside us during this unconscionable tragedy — you hold us up.

As the Wizard gave the Tin Man his heart, he explained, “A heart is not judged by how much you love, but by how much you are loved by others.” This community’s unity and grace and compassion is evidence of Kevin’s own heart and character, which sustains us during these dark days. Thank you all so much.

Oh, what we wouldn’t give for Uncle Henry to say this was all just a bad dream, but we know it isn’t. We wake up, and it’s still true — a living nightmare. No Kevin. Where’s that laugh?

Somehow though, some way, day by day, holding your hands, we will get through. The Tin Man, when he has to say goodbye says that he knows he has a heart now, because it’s breaking. Trying to see through tears and navigating the waters of immeasurable loss, one thing’s for sure about our East Hampton: There’s no place like home.



40 Five


Silence never

felt so quiet

she responded

and identified her

deceased brother.


Although strong,

being brave,

Kevin was gone.


A tragic turn of events

and circumstance

leaves a small town


and looking for answers.


Answers are not solutions,

rarely does the verdict

provide solace

but in this case

the law can’t overcome

a grief-stricken community

taken aback

by the death of a

very young

forty 5 year old


Condolences and

silence . . .


Untimely death

never makes sense




Coming to Terms
February 14, 2022

Dear David,

I am grateful to you for publishing the notes about “East Hampton’s Enslavers” (Feb. 10 issue).  Living in the manse of the First Presbyterian Church of Amagansett, a house built by one of the Mulfords in 1713, I have often wondered if enslaved people dwelt in the house.  From certain signs in the unfinished attic, it is possible that there were people who lived on the third floor. The conditions of that living space at the time are unknown to me, but I hope they were at least humane. 

Coming to terms with the heinous practice of slavery is a moral obligation of today — perhaps one of the most important. The crimes are so obvious, despite the excuses we might make for our forebears who held enslaved people. I believe that yes, we can judge people by the standards of today because there were plenty of people at the time resisting the practice and crying out against it. Furthermore, speaking for those of us who are Christians, we need only look at the scriptures to understand that to love one’s neighbor as you love yourself would not involve putting them in chains.

In January, the Presbytery of Long Island voted to send an overture to our next General Assembly that states our acknowledgement of the sin of slavery and its legacy. Research shows that many church leaders in  our denomination at the time of slavery could be lukewarm in their objection to the practice, and we need to be honest about this lapse as a first step toward justice. In recent years, along these lines, many Presbyterian churches, when their long history in their community can be traced, are publicly acknowledging that their church buildings stand on land stolen from Native Americans.

These moves and others taken by conscience-stricken people may be late in coming, but at least they are coming, opening the door a crack to the cruel policies that went unhindered for centuries. Centuries! Shame on us.

I hasten to add that to my knowledge this Mulford house was purchased by the church many years after slavery was abolished. In addition, Presbyterian churches have also done wonderful things for their communities along with things we must confess. That local churches have brought good things to their communities does not cancel out our complicity in the practice of slavery, but it shows how very human churches can be.  And it shows how we must maintain humility before God on all matters.

May the libraries involved in this research gather compelling evidence that we have things to acknowledge. It will be another matter for great and compassionate minds from all races to come together to decide how we best go about atoning.



Time to Act
East Hampton
February 14, 2022

Dear David,

Time to discuss. Time to Act. Your “Mast-Head” piece (Feb. 10) on East Hampton’s enslavers from the Colonial and early nation eras couldn’t have been clearer — you present irrefutable facts and data on the ubiquitous nature of slavery on the East End of Long Island and the subsequent wealth it enabled white enslavers, mainly male, to accrue. 

No “fake news,” no “alternative truths,” no ideological axes to grind. Just irrefutable facts. By all means. let’s continue to discuss and keep the research going. It’s only a start — the search is really yet to begin, as you say.

But let’s begin to act too — East Hampton Village officials have already given their blessing to the memorial stones that will be laid down in select spots in the village to commemorate particular enslaved people.

Our officials should also issue a formal apology to the enslaved and to their memories. Our officials should also officially, and at the very least, put the names of those who labored on the farms and plantations of the enslavers who have streets named after them on those street signs as well.

Our officials should remove the name of William Rysam, a leading enslaver for whom a scholarship is named and administered by the East Hampton Town Trustees.

The ministers of the churches where each of East Hampton’s first three church ministers were enslavers should acknowledge that fact and speak of true Christian redemption for those wrongs. All East Hampton churches, synagogues, and houses of worship should join in that healing process.

The ancestors of those who have streets named after them in East Hampton — Buell, Dayton, Edwards, Osborne, James, Huntting, Fithian, Sherrill, Gardiner, Barnes, Parsons, Hand, Mulford, and many others should all step up and acknowledge their families’ wealth and privilege as inextricably interwoven with the slave trade they and many others participated in and perpetuated.

A small token of that acknowledgement should take the form of a scholarship or some sort of financial compensation toward those descendants of enslaved families who helped make them so wealthy. In a small town like East Hampton the data gives us the names and information of who did what to whom  — who were the masters and who were the enslaved.

Many well-to-do celebrities, writers, filmmakers, journalists, media and professional executives, business movers and shakers, etc., consider themselves forward looking and progressive and make East Hampton their home. It’s time for many of them to step up, speak up, and act out their beliefs through support for various forms of reparations and/or supporting social programs that would benefit all those who keep this wonderful community going and livable. Charity isn’t needed when justice is done.

As Mississippi sharecropper Fannie Lou Hamer famously put it: “Nobody’s free until everybody’s free.” She also said she was “sick and tired of being sick and tired.” So are many of us — we’re all in this together. 

Black history is not a threat to White Americans. When Black people have fought for the promises of democracy, all Americans have benefited.




Let the Light In
East Hampton
February 12, 2022

Dear David,

I’m taking a much-needed respite from winter and dreaming of a sweet mild spring. Yet whilst relaxing and imagining my next book, my blood boils and my heart saddens everyday reading about the ridiculous albeit dangerous act of book banning. How positively Draconian can we become? Where shall it end?

Remember the slogan “Kindness Matters”? It was all the rage a few years back, on T-shirts, ubiquitous wooden signs, hats, key rings, and car coasters. We can’t even have civil conversations, some of us, where we beg to differ. I’m reminded of a time a person suggested to me we could only get into a heavy conversation, a certain group of us, with a mediator present! I kid you not. Now it sounds like a good idea. Ah, me.

I read a story in The Atlantic a few months ago, about Emmet Till. You remember learning about him in school? Or maybe someone told you the horror of his young life snuffed out by racism? If not, I’ll enlighten you. He was a 14-year-old boy in 1955 Mississippi who was tortured, maimed, and hung till he died in a barn by a group of angry men, men who could not have him talking to a white woman in a store. So they dragged him off and killed him. His mama kept the casket open so people could see how her son was tortured and murdered. I read in that article that talks about the present owner of that barn and how it hasn’t been touched since that horrible day. My heart broke anew for that mama and for Emmet Till. Maybe the barn should become a library. I’d be happy to supply the books.

The beauty and the ugliness in human beings we have learned about by reading books doesn’t harm us; it makes us empathetic. Lack of reading does the opposite.

We need not remove or clean up the books nor pretend these stories and truths didn’t happen. They are there so we can never repeat such atrocities. So we can do better. Or appreciate our differences. See the world is a big place and doesn’t revolve around us. We are not porcelain dolls. You’re hurting rather than protecting anyone. They’re books, not weapons.

For all our sakes, leave the books on the shelves to be taken down freely and read. More than ever we need a reminder of how intolerance, fear, and the need to control others is in our past, yet has crept into our present. Let’s not tarnish the wonder we see in our children’s eyes by our jadedness and fear. They are not born hating. Let them decide what they feel and whom they love. Books help a person grow. Let the light in, and we will all benefit. No one is too old to learn. Put down your self-righteous sword and maybe pick up a book. It could change your life — or give you a glimmer of hope.

Bookworm for life,



That Is Freedom
East Hampton
February 13, 2022


It is more than obvious that censorship does not travel well with a free society — like our own. At the same time it is also true that parents must have the last word on what their children are exposed to in accordance with their individual beliefs. That is freedom. I would offer a solution.

Concerned parents should compile a list of all objectionable publications, etc., and present it to their kids, not to school boards or libraries. If the children are of the same fiber as the parents, I am sure they will comply. That way everyone can be free.



Able Stewardship
East Hampton Village
February 10, 2022

Dear David,

Many thanks to you and Judy D’Mello for the insightful article concerning the East Hampton Healthcare Foundation, its origin, history, and purpose. It covers the waterfront with one major exception, which is entirely my oversight (a senior moment).

It goes without saying and should be noted that the day-to-day operation of the center is under the excellent management of Sheila Rogers, director, who has been with us since the foundation was founded. Under her able stewardship, our health care tenants have received exceptionally competent backup in performing their daily tasks.

It should also be noted that Sheila is president of the East Hampton Library. Her commitment to the local community is outstanding and should never be overlooked.




Joy to Read
February 12, 2022

To the Editor:

I can’t remember when I enjoyed a “Guestwords” feature more. Last week’s piece, “The Meaning of Love,” was moving and funny — a joy to read in these unsettled times. I hope to see more of Judith Schneider’s work in future issues.

Thank you,



Duck Creek Farm
Hampden, Me.
February 10, 2022

To the Editor,

I always enjoy the historical items Mayra Scanlon or Andrea Meyer have in The Star. I had recently done some research about the Duck Creek Farm and particularly the lots Mayra mentioned “for residential development.”

Two notices in The Star’s Feb. 8, 1918, issue mention John D. Edwards selling seven lots from his Three Mile Harbor property, noting the lots are 60 feet wide. Later in the same issue, under Local Paragraphs, The Star reports the real estate agent E.T. Dayton naming six buyers of these lots as Raymond Parsons, N.N. Tiffany, Dr. David Edwards, Carl Reutershan, Judson L. Banister (my wife’s great-uncle and former village mayor), and Frank Eldredge.

Sylvia Mendelman’s wonderful book, “Three Mile Harbor: East Hampton’s Priceless Gem,” mentions several of these people in her section on summer camps. Jud had some grand cookouts at his camp for the Hook and Ladder Company during the 1920s when he was captain.



Not ‘Against Anything’
East Hampton Village
February 14, 2022

To the Editor,

John P. Courtney Esq. submitted a letter to the zoning board of appeals in favor of the unwanted Toilsome Lane brewery on Feb. 9.

He ended his letter as follows,” I understand why neighbors would want to see a quiet, unused building remain that way. For some 20 years, they have had undisturbed enjoyment of applicant’s property and they don’t want to see change. It seems to me that they are against a restaurant whether it serves beer brewed on site or not. They are against a brewery if people are allowed to go there. It is pretty obvious that they are against anything that will make use of the property.”

For the record my neighbors on Toilsome Lane and I are not “against anything that will make use of the property.” What we are against is the inappropriate use of the property and the negative long-term effect it will have on our community and the Village of East Hampton.

“In practice, zoning is also used as a permitting system to prevent new development from harming existing residents or businesses” states Wikipedia.

The beer hall is a perfect example of a “new development” that would bring an abundance of “harm” to the residents of the Village of East Hampton, as has been cited in the many letters that have appeared in The East Hampton Star over the past several months as well as the almost 20 calls in protest of the beer hall that were made during the Jan. 14 zoning board of appeals hearing (Michael and Christine Aaron re: 17 Toilsome Lane).

This is a “new development” that is over-scaled and so much bigger in scope than the other commercial properties in our immediate neighborhood that makes it inappropriate and warrants the Village of East Hampton to disapprove the plans to build the Toilsome Lane brewery.

When a use for the property can be found that will not destroy the quality of life that our neighborhood has enjoyed for the past several centuries I am sure it will be welcomed by all of us.

We are not against anything but are in favor of building something that is correct!



High and Dry
East Hampton
February 14, 2022

To the Editor,

While I, and other “townies,” have endured the numerous price increases in village summer beach passes over the years, this year, if any of us second-class citizens didn’t race to pay our $500 beach fee, we were left high and dry in currently purchasing a pass.

However, as an alternative, one can, on May 1, pay $900 dollars for the pleasure of enjoying a village beach for three months.

What happened this year? How did 3,100 beach passes sell out on the first day of sale leaving many of us, who live in town, left without a currently available seasonal pass. Are the village administrators enjoying a great cash cow?

Can there be a more controlled manner for releasing passes to the townspeople? I hope the village offices will reconsider what occurred this season.




February 8, 2022

Dear David,

Add our names to those objecting to the unceremonious and unjustified firing of Matko Tomicic from LongHouse. We have donated art, time, and money for over 20 years to LongHouse but we will not in the future.

It was outright cruel to fire a person with such close, loving ties to Jack Larsen and to LongHouse Reserve. The harm has been done and it was completely unjustified, unwarranted, and unconscionable.

Matko will be fine; LongHouse will not. Jack would be furious. I know we are.




Public Good
Sag Harbor
February 12, 2022

To the Editor:

Re: “Governor in Town for Wind Farm ‘Groundbreaking,’” Feb. 12, Gov. Kathy Hochul, Interior Secretary Deb Haaland, and East Hampton Town Supervisor Peter Van Scoyoc were all on hand to get the South Fork Wind farm off to a good start — and groundbreaking it was, despite the project’s location offshore. The ceremonial dig took place in Wainscott, where intense objections to the underground cable connection held up the crucial work for years. But the public good won out.

As Governor Hochul rightly noted, New York needs to transition from dirty fossil fuels. The state, through its bold Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, commits us to clean energy to forestall climate change and to bring cleaner air, major job growth, and a new economic engine to the state. Among other measures, the law commits New York to 9,000 megawatts of offshore wind by 2035.

Most of the jobs will be in ports, manufacturing, and infrastructure, for which a $500 million investment has already been announced. Governor Hochul must continue to invest in renewable energy infrastructure and incentives, offshore and onshore, upstate and downstate, to meet the timeline and goals of the climate and community act, in service of promoting the public good for New Yorkers and the planet.



All About Bigger
February 14, 2022

Dear David,

To “build in kind” means to renovate or rebuild a structure basically as it is in the same form and existing footprint. It is generally a much lower-impact option than other types of construction projects. These days in East Hampton, we don’t see very much of building in kind anymore. In fact, for years now, we’ve been seeing the opposite — it’s been mainly “all demo, no reno.” Mostly, it’s been all about bigger.

Houses, even not very old ones, are demolished and replaced with new “luxury” structures, most often double to quadruple the size. It seems that 6,000-plus square feet is fast becoming the new normal; or new construction on previously undeveloped parcels clears and covers as much of the lot as possible. And a surge in lot subdivisions is driving rapid densification where there had been a sense of open space.

But all these new “dream homes” have become something of a nightmare. Much of today’s aggressive building is of a scale and in a style far out of proportion and context to the character of the surrounding streets, neighborhoods, and landscapes. The effect on our natural resources is severe, as each year, miles of woodlands, duneland, wetlands, and native vegetation are excavated — supplanted with impervious surface and planted with sod and ornamentals. The impact: It compromises quality of life for human residents and is devastating for our biodiversity. It’s out of step with the town’s environmental and affordability imperatives.

I’ve written five letters over the last six month on these pages about the concerning pace and scale of real estate development in East Hampton and its many, increasingly challenging, effects on our community. In my most recent Jan. 13 letter called “At Code Red,” I suggested that in view of the explosive acceleration of East Hampton development over the last five years, the current voracious appetite to max out or even break through code-based dimensional ceilings, and the trajectory we’re on going forward, our venerable town zoning code is underpowered relative to current dynamics, as well as the fact that the town last year declared a state of climate emergency.

Each time I write, I hear from friends and neighbors that they are appalled by what they see going on around them. I am always appreciative of being able to voice concerns and ideas on these pages, but now, I’m inspired to do more than just write. It’s time to take some action.

So, I am starting an effort I’ve named “Build.In.Kind/East Hampton.” The objective is to help to restore rational restraint and inspire desire for more modulated proportions in order to mitigate the negative impact of development activity on our town by instilling a stewardship mind-set and sowing a “land ethic.” The goal is to have building and development that is literally kinder to — i.e., has a gentler and more positive effect on — our land, environment, rural and historical character, affordability, and quality of life.

My hope is all East Hampton building projects will be viewed, not just through the narrowest lens of individual desire, but also from a broader perspective of overall impact on the community. I’m building this effort on six foundational pillars: to build in kind with our natural resources, our coastal areas and shorelines, our environmental and sustainability imperatives, our housing affordability needs, our sense of place, and our neighbors.

With Build.In.Kind/East Hampton, I am looking to drive constructive and positive engagement by bringing together analytical and creative, forward-looking, concerned citizens in two ways.

First, in the near term: forming a working group of individuals drawn from all our hamlets to (a) help to rethink town zoning code strategically and tactically in a way that builds upon its historical validity and addresses the new reality and (b) engage and educate as well as advocate and advise appropriately our town boards, committees, and departments as well as citizens, homeowners, and visitors.

Second, over the longer term: developing a network of the talented people who work in all parts of the real estate ecosystem — brokers, builders, developers, architects, designers, landscapers, lawyers, and consultants — who want to join in with this effort and work to integrate the principles of Build.In.Kind into the business of real estate development in order to create value not just for themselves, but for all stakeholders in our community.

Most important: This isn’t about battling against things like property rights or profit motive; instead, it is about striving for something — the rebalancing of individual rights and wants with the important interests, values, needs and rights of the community. These principles do not undermine a robust economy in East Hampton — in actuality, they will enhance and sustain commercial activity and property values long term.

I’d love to hear from my fellow East Hampton citizens about this. If you would like to get involved and be part of this effort, or if you simply want to hear more, share your thoughts, or offer advice, please visit our new website and send a message.




Top-Notch Fields
East Hampton
February 14, 2022

To the Editor,

This letter is to thank the East Hampton Town Board for all they have done to approve the new baseball and softball fields planned for Stephen Hand’s Path. Special thanks go to David Lys and Kathee Burke-Gonzalez. They took the lead on this ambitious project, reaching out to the community to help develop a plan for the finished fields by establishing a relocation committee comprising current and former East Hampton Little League board members, coaches, parents, and interested community leaders. Their work spanned several years, researching possible locations and usage requirements, and finally developing plans for top-notch fields to be built in East Hampton when Southampton Hospital breaks ground on the land at the current Little League fields on Pantigo Road.

Five locations were considered by the relocation committee. Most were deemed too small. The Stephen Hand’s Path location stood out as the best choice, as it has ample room to add ball fields and additional parking to the soccer field complex already there.

Once the committee had a location to work with, members researched and visited ball fields across Suffolk County and beyond, and talked with anyone and everyone involved in baseball and softball who would be willing to discuss the pros and cons of all aspects of ball field design. After extensive research, the committee determined that sports turf would be the best choice as a playing surface as it is durable, playable through all weather, and relatively maintenance-free.

From our experience and further learning, grass fields require constant maintenance, are unplayable during and directly after rain, and need major improvements (grass lips removed, infield dirt added, weeds removed, etc.) at the beginning of each season.

The Town Parks and Recreation Department already has a huge lift maintaining and readying its many parks and beaches at the same time as Little League season, and our fields do not always get the daily love they require.

East Hampton Little League has over 300 players across seven divisions, ranging in age from 5 to 12 years, and currently uses 11 ball fields across East Hampton for practice and games. This includes town, school, and village fields. While it saddens us to be losing our beloved fields at Pantigo Road, the two artificial turf fields at Daniel’s Hole Road will be a great addition for Little League and the entire community. We cannot wait to see our children playing on these new fields. They deserve to have a facility that meets or exceeds the quality of ball fields of other communities across Long Island!

Our season begins in just over a month. While we hope to continue to play on our beloved Pantigo fields this year, we are also looking forward to next year’s season on the new turf fields.

Registration for this season ends Feb. 28. You can sign up online. We’re looking forward to another great season. Let’s play ball!


2022 East Hampton Little League Board of Directors


Play Ball
February 14, 2022

Dear David,

Granted, my still-uncashed $5.35 check that I sent Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred two years ago is not enough money to make token (good will) one-cent payments (peace offerings to end the lockout) to all 750 players on M.L.B.’s 30 teams’ 25-man rosters; but if I send Manfred my first $5.35 check, which his predecessor, Bud Selig, returned to me uncashed, Manfred would then have enough money ($10.70) to prove that the players are not unreasonably money-hungry plus leave an extra $3.20 that could seed the “bonus pool that would benefit pre-arbitration players”! These two checks could truly provide Manfred’s “one breakthrough away from making an agreement,” and tens of millions of baseball fans across the land could once again forget all about the Super Bowl and unite in listening to umpires’ cries of “Play ball!”

The $5.35 represented one cent for every “point” (.353 + 52 +130) of my unauthorized “use” of Mickey Mantle’s 1956 Triple Crown statistics.



A New Model
East Hampton
February 14, 2022

Dear David,

One reason some people aren’t getting behind closing the airport is because there hasn’t been a compelling alternative vision for the site. I took a shot at remedying this situation with a proposal that I believe serves 100 percent of our town population versus the 1 percent, and makes it hard to argue for any continued operation of commercial flights and pollution generation:

Utility scale solar — The site’s primary use as a large utility-scale solar farm is one of the highest priorities. The potential exists for at least a 2-to-3 megawatt installation that could power thousands of homes with renewable energy on just a fraction of the property. The potential for solar and battery storage on site, regardless of its operation as an airport, should be considered along the runways, and as the site is free of trees, no clearing would need to occur. Pairing solar arrays with shade-tolerant crop production or grazing animals (agri-voltaics) is a growing movement, which could pair nicely if linked with a compatible agricultural use. The potential for this solar farm to power a microgrid for nearby residential housing (as proposed later in this letter) is another important consideration, as microgrids act as a hedge against grid failure in the case of an emergency or disaster and are increasingly being looked at as a useful climate change adaptation for municipalities.

Agriculture — Nearly 600 acres of cleared and level ground — presents the opportunity for farming food crops organically. Soil remediation may need to occur because of years of pollution in some areas and this could be achieved with fast-growing cover crops, native grasses, or by fungal means like oyster mushrooms, which are adept at removing heavy metals from soil strata. As the site is over the main aquifer, great care would need to be taken in terms of irrigation, and pesticides and conventional fertilizers would not be advised. In addition to traditional permaculture practices like crop rows, small individual garden lots could be established for nearby residents. An existing large hangar on the periphery of the site could serve as a vertical indoor farming operation, using technology to provide nutritious year-round local produce in a highly controlled environment, and an on site farmers market would be a natural addition to this use. Indoor vertical agriculture is another important emerging business opportunity.

Parkland and passive recreation — Large areas of public space in the Town of East Hampton are greatly lacking, and if the airport site is put to this purpose we could have walking/running trails, bike paths, barbecue areas, workout stations, BMX runs, birdwatching blinds, playgrounds, and/or dog parks and the like in a unique setting. This kind of recreational use encourages the public to exercise and explore the grounds with little to no development and can preserve existing grassland. Park space could act as a buffer that would also connect various use areas.

Affordable housing — Housing stock in the town would greatly benefit from the addition of 10 to 30 or more units built on a dense site plan on the eastern edge of the site, with repurposed runways used to create through streets and parking connecting to Daniel’s Hole Road. Depending on the number of units permitted, a centralized sewer collection and treatment system or individual low-nitrogen septic systems would control waste. This development could take the form of small single-family units like cottages, “tiny” homes, apartments in row houses, or the like. Multi-family housing, a.k.a. co-housing, could be explored with buildings that offer shared amenities, like community kitchens or gathering places, with the addition of a new zoning code. We should look at 3-D house printing technology, which, although in its infancy, is quickly becoming the cheapest way to rapidly deploy attractive yet economic housing. This new, small development could be powered by the on site solar farm as a microgrid.

Light commercial and industrial use — Maintaining the current commercial-industrial zoning, a compact area of development could be set aside for workshops, studios, storefronts, eateries, and other commercial uses as an economic benefit to residents just next door and beyond. Additional parking would be provided in the rear of the lot. Existing hangars and garages could be retrofitted or renovated for these uses.

The above proposed uses for the airport site can work synergistically to create a new model for sustainable living on the East End of Long Island — or universally. With residential development as the nucleus, space for recreation and food and energy production become a module in line with self-sufficiency that can also be enjoyed by the greater population. These ideas are worth serious consideration and have tangible implications for our future. Let’s get behind a unified vision for the benefit of the entire town!



Worth the Cost
East Hampton Village
February 13, 2022

To the Editor:

I may be the only one writing to applaud the Federal Aviation Administration’s insistence that when the East Hampton Airport reopens privately that before operations can be approved the agency (quoting here from your article): “will conduct an airspace analysis” and “must consider the effect of the proposed airport on the safe and efficient use of airspace by aircraft,” as well as safety on the ground, “by considering the effect of the proposed airport on existing or contemplated traffic patterns, its effect on the existing airspace structure, and the effects that existing or proposed manmade or natural objects would have on the airport proposal.”

Surely this will be the correct path to opening privately with maximum safety and minimum liabilities. Would it take too long? Probably. Would it be expensive? Probably. Would it be worth the cost? I would say absolutely. Can the town afford it? Maybe. But anything less than adhering to the F.F.A.’s requirements would be likely to open the town to liabilities, which I’m pretty sure it would be ill advised to take on.

It seems to me that this is not a disruption in the process, rather a prudent manner in which to proceed.




Horse Slaughter
East Hampton
February 10, 2022

To the Editor,

Even though horse slaughter plants no longer operate in the United States, tens of thousands of American horses continue to be shipped abroad each year to be slaughtered for human consumption. Despite the fact that horse slaughter is inherently cruel to the animals, a serious threat to human health, and environmentally and economically destructive to local communities, some individuals still want horse slaughter plants to operate in the U.S. to support this cruel industry.

There is no market for horse meat in this country, and over 80 percent of American voters oppose horse slaughter. We cherish horses. They helped us build the foundation of our nation. They are loyal companions, and they are dedicated partners in our sporting and equestrian culture. Additionally, meat from horses is dangerous because the animals are routinely provided drugs known to be toxic to people and specifically banned by the Food and Drug Administration for use in animals raised for consumption. The horse slaughter industry is a cruel and predatory one and we must end our country’s participation in it to protect America’s horses.

Fortunately, the Save America’s Forgotten Equines Act has been introduced in the House and Senate, and would finally ban the export of American horses to slaughterhouses. I urge my Representative Lee Zeldin to co-sponsor the SAFE Act to put a stop to this cruel industry and protect horses and consumers.



Manufacturing Dirt
February 14, 2022

Dear David,

The Durham report may be the only thing that shows truth. It’s about time Democrats and Republicans will work together to get the truth. Democrats are actually looking to investigate Hillary Clinton’s role in manufacturing dirt to try to tie Donald Trump to the Kremlin, a new poll shows at least 66 percent of Dems want her investigated. The survey, conducted by TechnoMetrica Institute of Policy and Politics in New Jersey last month polled 1,308 Americans about the investigation by Durham into the F.B.I.’s probe of Trump’s alleged links to Russia during the 2016 presidential campaign. It shows a total of 91 percent of Republicans in the same group and 65 percent of independents also called for Clinton to specifically be investigated.

As a part of the probe involving Sussman, Durham said in a legal filing on Friday that he discovered Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign paid a web firm to infiltrate servers at Trump Tower and the White House to try to tie Trump to Russia.

This woman will do anything to be in power. She’s ruthless and corrupt. Presently I’m reading “Crisis of Character” by Gary J. Byrne, a former secret agent; I highly recommend this book to show the real Hillary and Bill Clinton.

In God and country,


In his Feb. 11 conflict-of-interest filing, Special Counsel John Durham did not say a “web firm” was paid by the Clinton campaign; that unsupported interpretation has been spread by Fox News and other right-wing media. The White House data in question was from the Obama presidency, not the Trump era. Ed. 


East Hampton
February 14, 2022


As both the outside world and our internal universe spin wildly out of control there is a sense that the chaos is a function of a planned attack on our fundamental systems and sense of order. After World War II and the extraordinary level of death and destruction promulgated by the Nazis and the Japanese (around 75 million deaths including war-related disease), most of the world. Led by the U.S., we began to create a system of checks and balances that would guarantee that World War III would never happen. This system of treaties and alliances and mutual reliance and interdependence that was created would bring the entire world into its orbit and limit substantially the possibility of war and destruction.

At the end of the war the U.S. was the only country that remained in good shape. Most of Europe, Asia, and Africa were politically and economically devastated. The threat of communism was taking hold, and nuclear proliferation created a danger that had never been imagined. War was no longer a reasonable option, if it ever was, to resolve conflicts.

The United Nations, UNESCO, NATO, and dozens of alliances, along with a multitude of trade agreements, were created to tie the nations of the world together politically, economically, and socially. Underlying this enormous undertaking over the past 70 years was the belief that world security was the only real way to assure national security.

When Trump was elected in 2016, the role of the U.S. was changed from international facilitator and leader to: Screw the world, only America counts. This radical departure from 70 years of creating a world of mutual respect and interdependence was typified by the slogan “America First” (Deutschland Uber Alles).

Trump had never shown any interest in international politics or any politics for that matter. He was devoid of ideas, beliefs, and policies. So it seems logical to assume that Trump was essentially a puppet whose strings were being pulled by someone else. Who and how is the dilemma we are facing.

Upon taking office Trump pulled out of the international climate agreement, the Iran nuclear agreement, and the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement. He immediately created a conflict with our NATO allies and lauded Vladimir Putin and Russia. He created a running battle with China over tariffs. He dissed virtually all the governments of Latin America except for Brazil and supported almost every autocratic government. He set about dismantling 70 years of diplomacy aimed at keeping the world a more secure and peaceful place.

Perhaps the most obvious departure from post-World War II policies was the hiring of Paul Manafort as an adviser and as a campaign manager. Manafort was recognized as an agent of Putin and worked in the Ukraine. Manafort was paid $12 million to manage the presidential campaign of Viktor Yanukovych, a pro-Soviet candidate. The Trump-Manafort-Putin connection would have disqualified any American from running for dog catcher much less president.

When we look at the Russian troops massed at the Ukraine borders and then listen to Putin and Xi announce their mutual support treaty and see that NATO can’t agree on a unified response, there is a sense that the world is creepily moving into chaos.

America first looks more like America bent over. We no longer are the standard-bearer for democratic ideals. Our electoral system is in free fall. We seem more like Uganda and Belarus than Germany and Denmark. We have presidents and politicians trying to overturn elections that have been reviewed by the courts and certified by the states. We have people attacking the Capitol and calling it a picnic. We no longer trust our basic institutions to teach our kids and heal our sick. If we don’t trust our democratic form of government, what are the alternative propositions: dictatorship, monarchy, a parliamentary system? What do we want our government to do?

For the established world order we face a day of reckoning. How do we respond to Russia’s aggression in Ukraine and China’s threats to Taiwan? Will Japan and Germany return to their militaristic ways? Will the U.S. close its borders and disconnect from the world? Do we have any clue about the chaos and evil that four years of Trump created, our own home-grown fascist dictator with 70 million voters behind him?

Unfortunately, MAGA means screw the world and a screwed world puts the U.S. at risk. Was that really what all those people voted for?


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