Steven K-Brooks

‘Hot-spotters’ barred from touring properties for sale

In his letter, Mark Tully writes: “Vermont is being flooded by COVID-19 hot-spotters looking to buy property. [...] Now, sociopath real estate agents in Brattleboro are trying to bring them into people's homes.”

What is particularly odd is that Tully's most bitter complaint is that Vermont's rules include the following:

“Special note about showing occupied homes: Realtors and landlords may not require occupants of a home or apartment to allow potential buyers or renters into their homes during this extraordinary time.”

I am still trying to figure out what Tully's problem is with a requirement that protects tenants.

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Surely, we have more intelligent choices

I do not call myself a “white ally,” nor do I label myself in any way which commits me to a formulaic list of prescribed behavior. When I lived there in the late 1970s, Main Street separated East Buffalo from West Buffalo. It was a “color line” in a...

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By hiring canvasser, four people bought a place on the ballot

The fellow who collected hundreds of signatures to amend the Brattleboro Town Charter to replace the Selectboard form of governance with that of a mayoral form of governance, told me that four local businessmen paid him. When he had collected enough signatures and it was his last day tabling...

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Confronting racism — together

When my roommate, Frank Parker, was stopped by the doorman in the fancy lobby, it could only have been racism. My therapist's office was on the fifth floor; I had invited Frank to attend a session. We were in our early 20s. Frank always dressed well and was impeccably groomed. In those days, I was perennially scruffy, yet I always walked past the doorman, apparently unnoticed. By his skin color and features, Frank was identifiably “black.” Regardless of my ancestry...

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Dr. Thomas Lewis exemplified the best among physicians

I owe a debt of gratitude to Brattleboro Memorial Hospital Surgeon Thomas H. Lewis, who died unexpectedly earlier this month while on vacation. I first met Dr. Lewis in the old emergency room. The on-duty physician - an out-of-the-area doctor on loan to BMH - was verbally abusive. I was in distress, facing emergency surgery, which I understood would be under the knife of that horrible individual. Then, Dr. Lewis showed up. He had left a family picnic on a...

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Lofty silence from hospital

The story is horrifying: Our hospital turning away a 99-year-old man with two broken arms. I have read on the Brattleboro Memorial Hospital website that every hospital staff member is an advocate for the patient. Really? Elayne Clift rightly challenges the BMH CEO to take responsibility. Lofty silence from Steve Gordon is not acceptable.

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Major party

After relocating from New York City to Brattleboro in the early 1980s, my then-partner, now-wife Donna and I found ourselves feeling somewhat isolated. To our surprise, we felt unwelcome by our town's “alternative community.” With one or two exceptions, we found that the Common Ground Collective members - whom we had hoped would be our community - seemed to be cliquish and judgmental. I took some comfort in realizing that I must not be imagining this when the managing editor...

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Who’s crazy?

Every family has secrets. Mine had more than its share. If there were a way that my mother could have avoided telling me about Aunt Rose, I am sure that I would never had found out about her. Rose had been in Rockland Psychiatric Center since 1930, when her brief marriage failed and she lost custody of her only child. Now, in 1956, her three sisters (Aunt Fanny, Aunt Yetta, and my mother) were planning a family visit. We went...

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