06/06/15 5:59am
06/06/2015 5:59 AM

Over the past several weeks, the East End’s waterways have been inundated with toxic red and mahogany tides resulting in die-offs of diamondback terrapin (turtles), bunker and alewives. Our local media have done a good job of not only reporting on these occurrences but also speaking with the experts to explain them. So I was infuriated when Riverhead Supervisor Walter, asked about these die-offs, was quoted as saying that previous rain “may have washed toxins into the water” and quickly backed away from the “toxic” idea, saying later when asked about scientists’ findings, “Yeah, well everybody has their own theory. Mine is that the bluefish are chasing them into the river.”

Yeah, the bluefish are to blame. (more…)

05/12/15 10:02am
05/12/2015 10:02 AM
A truck with an oversized load on Main Road in East Marion. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

A truck with an oversized load on Main Road in East Marion. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

On April 27, the Town of Riverhead won a very significant battle in the war to keep the East End the last rural area on Long Island when billionaire John Catsimatidis withdrew his oil terminal’s application to expand into a full-fledged gasoline distribution center.

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05/10/15 8:00am
05/10/2015 8:00 AM

Although Mother Nature doesn’t want to let go of winter, we are busy, like other boaters, prepping our vessel for the upcoming season. We were very lucky to have found our home on the beautiful Peconic River. It’s the perfect spot for us. We can fi sh the river and head out to the bays and beyond, enjoying Long Island’s waterways.

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05/03/15 8:00am
05/03/2015 8:00 AM

They make the sound that still tears at my soul. They bring me the promise of peace and they Pavlovianly ready me for violence. It’s the same sound — the sound of a chopper.

In my generation, it was the distinctive clop-clop-clop of a Bell UH-1 Iroquois — the famed Huey. But there are other helicopters that bring the same feelings to generations of warriors.  (more…)

05/02/15 10:00am
05/02/2015 10:00 AM
Hudson, a 12-year-old dachshund, died last April. (Credit: Charity Robey)

Hudson, a 12-year-old dachshund, died last April. (Credit: Charity Robey)

Last April, our beloved dachshund, Hudson, died. He was 12, which is pretty old in dog years, as they say.

My husband suggested we wait a year before we started sniffing around for a new dog, “out of respect.” I thought this was a strange idea, but now that a year has passed, I can see some good has come of waiting. No good for Hudson alas, but waiting has helped me understand what that long, black dog meant to me.  (more…)

04/21/15 12:00pm

A mere four years ago, and for decades prior, one could not find any substantial evidence of students opting-out of standardized testing. At first glance, the current, heated, conflict over state testing and the “opt-out” movement appears to be a dispute between those who believe in and those who dispute the value of state tests. But this conflict goes deeper. It is a conflict about what is good for children and adolescents, about how children learn and thrive, and about how to raise young people to enter into and contribute to their communities as mature members of a democratic society.  (more…)

03/23/15 12:00pm
03/23/2015 12:00 PM

No doubt you have heard the news that public education is in need of reform. Gov. Cuomo has said so. Former CNN anchor Campbell Brown has said so. Even President Obama has said so. And what do all these people have in common? Well, a few things. None of them has taught students a day in their life. All of them have received pay or political contributions from the charter school movement and/or testing companies and all of them have wholly endorsed more charter schools.  (more…)

03/08/15 8:00am
03/08/2015 8:00 AM
County Executive Steve Bellone (center) touts the benefits of the county's new sex offender monitoring efforts in Hauppauge last week. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

County Executive Steve Bellone (center) touts the benefits of the county’s new sex offender monitoring efforts in Hauppauge last week. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

East End towns and villages are now under political and media pressure to participate in Suffolk County’s sex offender monitoring program. This program is operated, under contract with the county, by the Parents for Megan’s Law advocacy organization. Taking a position against a new sex offender monitoring program, here or anywhere, will not help me win any popularity contests. However, I think it’s important for us to take an objective look at this program’s potential impact on the community, its taxpayers and those it targets before jumping on the “Let’s get tough with sex offenders” bandwagon.  (more…)