For the past 50 years there has been rapid warming in the maritime Antarctic1, 2, 3, with concurrent, and probably temperature-mediated, proliferation of the two native plants, Antarctic pearlwort (Colobanthus quitensis) and especially Antarctic hair grass (Deschampsia antarctica)4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. In many terrestrial ecosystems at high latitudes, nitrogen (N) supply regulates primary productivity11, 12, 13. Although the predominant view is that only inorganic and amino acid N are important sources of N for angiosperms, most N enters soil as protein. Maritime Antarctic soils have large stocks of proteinaceous N, which is released slowly as decomposition is limited by low temperatures. Consequently, an ability to acquire N at an early stage of availability is key to the success of photosynthetic organisms. Here we show that D. antarctica can acquire N through its roots as short peptides, produced at an early stage of protein decomposition, acquiring N over three times faster than as amino acid, nitrate or ammonium, and more than 160 times faster than the mosses with which it competes. Efficient acquisition of the N released in faster decomposition of soil organic matter as temperatures rise14 may give D. antarctica an advantage over competing mosses that has facilitated its recent proliferation in the maritime Antarctic
DCS And Governor Sued Over Level Of Care For Vulnerable ChildrenJune, 2019 By Victoria RatliffTheStatehouseFile.comINDIANAPOLIS— A disability rights group has sued the state’s Department of Child Services to force change at an agency that has high numbers of children in an overburdened foster care system.Indiana Disability Rights, an Indianapolis organization that advocates on behalf of children, filed the civil rights lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Evansville Tuesday on behalf of all children in the DCS system. It identifies nine children who are in the foster care system as representative plaintiffs in the case. “It is traumatic enough being separated from your parents but to then be further traumatized by a system meant to protect is terrible,” said Melissa Keyes, legal director for IDR.In addition to the agency, Director Terry Stigdon and Gov. Eric Holcomb are named in the lawsuit.DCS declined to comment on the pending litigation. Holcomb’s office did not respond to a request for comment Wednesday.Currently, DCS has 22,000 children who are in the legal or physical custody of DCS or an organization with whom DCS has a special relationship. More than 14,300 of these children are in out-of-home care.IDR worksat the state level to protect individuals with disabilities by advocating on their behalf and regularly looks at facilities who serve those with disabilities.After examining private secure facilities licensed by DCS, IDR officials noticed they weren’t at the quality level they expected. IDR reported its findings to DCS but eventually realized that nothing was happening. IDR officials said they believe the agency wasn’t doing what it should to make sure the facilities were up to standard.IDR then connected with A Better Childhood, a national advocacy group for children, and Kirkland & Ellis, a global law firm, to help them with a lawsuit.During the 2019 legislative session, lawmakers provided additional funding for DCS. Although it was less than requested, DCS’s budget was raised by $243 million for 2020, and $223 million for 2021, bringing the total budget to around $800 million a year.Two laws were passed during the session to help change DCS policies. Senate Enrolled Act 1, authored by Sen. Erin Houchin, R-Salem, provides additional support for foster families. House Enrolled Act 1006, authored by Rep. Greg Steuerwald, R-Avon, extends the age foster children can receive services to 21 and updates the DCS caseload standard to comply with national guidelines.During an event on June 13, Stigdon said that the annual turnover rate for family case managers is down nearly 19%. In 2017, the turnover rate was nearly one in three while the rate dropped to almost one in four in 2018.Keyes said legislators and policy makers are too focused on statistics, such as case load numbers or number of employees, and not on the root cause of the issues.“What we’re mainly looking at is more the systemic philosophical policy and practice change,” she said so children like Sara O., who is named in the lawsuit, get the level of care they need.Sara, 14, was sexually abused by her father and was placed into foster care. After several years she was returned to him and abused again. She re-entered foster care and ended up in 17 different placements, including a state psychiatric hospital where she lived for three years.Keyes said that the biggest issue that needs to be addressed is DCS’s tendency to put children like Sara in institutions when other community-based services should be used.“Too often DCS is relying on placing kids in an institution when that is not a necessary level of care that they need,” she said.The lawsuit also says that previous reports conducted by the Child Welfare Group (CWG) revealed many of the same issues, and “despite the fact that these issues have been called to the attention of officials before, they persist.”Some of the issues highlighted in the lawsuit are failure to provide safe and appropriate foster care placements, failure to provide appropriate services to the children and their families to allow safe reunification, failure to timely pursue termination of parental rights, and failure to seek and secure safe, permanent homes.Sen. Tim Lanane, D-Anderson, in a written statement, said Democrats in the Senate have repeatedly called for lawmakers to make DCS a priority.“The conditions and experiences these kids have faced are disheartening, disappointing and just plain wrong,” he said.Rep. Phil GiaQuinta, D-Fort Wayne, said the lawsuit shows that DCS needs oversight to protect Indiana’s most disadvantaged children.IDR isn’t seeking monetary compensation but wants DCS to be held accountable for what the lawsuit calls failed policies and practices.“We are looking for a systemic overhaul of how DCS is offering services to children to ensure that their rights are protected,” she said.FOOTNOTE: Victoria Ratliff is a reporter for TheStatehouseFile.com, a news website powered by Franklin College journalism students. FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmail
Dave Stafford for www.theindianalawyer.comNow that Indianapolis’ pay-to-play slating system that evenly divvied judgeships between Democrats and Republicans has been ruled unconstitutional, it’s up to the General Assembly to figure out how Marion County should select its judges.Key lawmakers suggested there’s no rush to find a fix, though, because the next Marion Superior judicial election won’t happen until 2018. If legislators follow systems enacted for larger counties such as Lake, Allen and St. Joseph, merit selection could determine future Indianapolis judges, but that’s far from a given.Sen. Brent Steele, R-Bedford, chairs the Interim Study Committee on Courts and the Judiciary. He said he didn’t expect the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling striking down Marion Superior elections will be discussed in either of the committee’s two remaining 2015 meetings.Sen. Michael R. Young, an Indianapolis Republican who serves on the Judiciary Committee, said it’s too early to tell whether there will be proposals to revamp the Marion County system in the upcoming session because there’s still time for the decision to be appealed.The office of Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller could not indicate by IL deadline whether the state would appeal the ruling.“Before anything’s decided, what we’ll do is get together both political parties, the judges involved, and try to discuss it and see what’s fair,” Young said. He isn’t philosophically opposed to merit selection, hesaid, but noted, “My personal thought is we try to find a solution within the system we have now, making people’s votes meaningful and keeping the decision with the voters.”Of Indiana’s 92 counties, 87 select judges through direct, partisan election. While it’s unclear what will replace Marion County’s current system designed to ensure partisan balance, some close to the process say it is unlikely changes will result in Indianapolis voters filling in unrestricted partisan ballots to elect Superior Court judges.While heavily Democratic Marion County is the largest judicial circuit in the state, it also oversees a unique docket. Superior courts in the state capital handle appeals from state agency actions, and those decisions can have statewide implications. This special situation could prompt lawmakers to fashion a system in which the Legislature has a greater say in judicial appointments.GeyhIndiana University Maurer School of Law professor Charles Geyh, an authority on judicial selection, said it’s possible lawmakers could craft a system in which the state Senate or designated body serves in an advise-and-consent role on choosing judges, and he believes that sort of system would withstand constitutional scrutiny. But, he said he couldn’t hazard a guess as to what is likely to replace the system ruled unconstitutional.Geyh noted the merit selection movement nationally has stalled in recent years, so it’s far from a sure bet lawmakers would enact such a system in Indianapolis. The task for legislators, he said, is finding a system that strikes the proper balance between judicial independence and public accountability.“Marion County had a thoroughly wonky system for selecting judges,” Geyh said. “It was originally designed to keep the process from getting political. The net effect of trying to make it less politically partisan is the parties basically dictated judgeships and voters had basically nothing to say.”That’s how the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals saw the system in its Sept. 9 opinion, affirming a ruling by Chief Judge Richard Young of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana that the statute was unconstitutional.“We agree with the district court that the Statute at issue burdens the right to cast a meaningful vote without sufficiently weighty interests to justify such a burden,” the 7th Circuit ruled in Common Cause Indiana v. Individual Members of the Indiana Election Commission, et al., 14-3300.“We conclude that the precise interests (including partisan balance) put forward by the State do not justify the burden placed on the right to vote for judicial candidates for the Marion Superior Court. Therefore, the Statute violates the First and Fourteenth Amendments,” the panel held.The election law that was struck down facilitated a system whereby both parties “slated” ballot positions with candidates who made five-figure financial contributions to the parties.The slating process essentially made the general election pointless, because those candidates who won in primary elections were assured election because of the allocation of a set number of judgeships to each party. For instance, in a year where there was an election to fill 20 judicial positions, voters received ballots in which they could vote for up to 20 candidates, but only 10 Republicans and 10 Democrats were listed on the ballot.SchummIndiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law professor Joel Schumm said Marion County party chairs spoke to students in his judicial selection course after the 7th Circuit opinion.While the system was flawed, he said, “There are advantages and disadvantages to every system. We’ll end up with some sort of a system, and it’s not going to be a perfect system.”Schumm said slating kept a lid on the amount of money judicial candidates had to raise in Marion County, in contrast to judges from other counties who’ve told his class they needed to raise in excess of $60,000 for campaigns. Merit selection has shortcomings, too, he said, noting he’s unaware of any judge at any level in Indiana who’s ever lost a retention vote.The system in Marion County was so unique, Schumm said, that even election law experts disagree about whether the 7th Circuit opinion was an unusual reach into the conduct of local elections. Nevertheless, he said there could be dangers if the current system is only slightly modified.“If the goal of this is some sort of partisan balance, the court doesn’t seem to buy that argument,” he said. “I don’t know that that’s going to pass muster.”Marion County “has a system that’s unique in the country and clearly creates a non-election,” said Ken Falk, legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana, which represented Common Cause. “If the right to vote is going to mean anything, it means the right to a meaningful election.”“There is no more important right in our Constitution than that of exercising a meaningful vote,” Falk said. “We are very pleased that the Court’s decision forcefully reaffirms that right.”The 7th Circuit agreed with Young’s ruling that the statute was unconstitutional on its face and that Common Cause was entitled to summary judgment. In most cases under the Partisan Balance Statute, I.C. 33-33-49-13, “So long as each candidate votes for himself or herself, as he or she presumably will, actions taken by other voters in the general election are meaningless, as they lack any opportunity to affect the outcome,” wrote Judge Theresa Springmann of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana, sitting by designation on the panel.The panel rejected the state’s argument that races could be contested by independent or minor-party candidates. “It does not alter the fundamental nature of the Statute — to reduce electoral choice and the availability of what would otherwise be contested elections in the interest of preserving partisan balance.” The panel held that the statute also “interferes with the marketplace” by restricting the number of candidates each party may nominate.The system “could be viewed as ultra-partisan,” according to the panel.“Such a system creates the perception that a judge is chosen within the primaries, not the general election, and if a judicial candidate’s eventual election is dependent solely on the primary, the candidate’s chances of being elected improve the more he appears to espouse the ideals of the party,” Springmann wrote.And because judicial candidates are “slated” by parties after making contributions of about $12,000 to $14,000 to the local parties, “the candidate could consider himself indebted to the party. His best chance at winning the election is to earn a spot on the party’s slate of preferred candidates,” Springmann wrote.•FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmail
T he milling and baking industry’s responses to my book Bread Matters (British Baker, 6 October) are reminiscent of Nelson’s tactics when he put a telescope to his blind eye and declared, “I see no ships.” Much of the evidence I assembled is based on recent scientific research, that shows how changes in wheat varieties and production and in milling and fermentation technology have combined to degrade bread’s digestibility and nutritional quality.Yet only professor Jeya Henry of Oxford Brookes University seems to recognise a problem. The industry hides behind regulations – which it has historically resisted or sought to bend to its own purposes – when the emerging evidence suggests that these may no longer serve the public health. Stan Cauvain accuses those who take time to make bread properly of basing their production on ’myth, magic and word of mouth’. But the real myth is peddled by those who assert that low price is compatible with quality; using hidden additives to make bread stay ’fresh’ for weeks is surely magic, albeit of a tawdry kind.commercial opportunityI believe the plant baking indus-try and the intensive farmers and millers have gone down a blind alley. But I don’t advocate tearing down the plant bake- ries. Rather, there is an enormous commercial (and moral) opportunity for a plant baker that engages with the evidence assembled and says: “OK, we may have got it wrong. But now, we’re going to use our capital, technical expertise and ingenuity to make nutritional and digestive health the top priority in all our bread, not just the added-value ’healthy eating’ ranges. We’re going to put time back into fermentation and we’re going to remove all additives and processing aids from all our breads.”competitive edgeJust imagine how they could wipe the floor with the competition, who would be left defending all the dodgy processes and additives which they are not even willing to disclose to their customers, let alone discuss seriously with critics such as me. Meanwhile, as British Baker’s recent article on French bakery Poilâne shows, there are craft bakers making good bread, using vital ingredients and long fermentations, who are finding ways of operating on some scale.Whether this scale is ’industrial’ depends on what that word entails. The late Lionel Poilâne made large quantities of artisanal bread – and sent it all over the world – by assembling 22 wood-fired ovens in a large circular building outside Paris. Each oven was operated by a team of two or three bakers, but they drew ingredients and fuel from a central source in the middle of the building. So he achieved economies of scale without compromising essential artisanal handcrafting.Ultimately, the issue is not one of scale, but one of principle and method. The industrial mentality holds that efficiency is measured by output per man or margin over ingredient cost, when we all know that other measures, such as human nutrition and environmental impact, are crying out to be taken into consideration. Healthy, nutritious bread can be made on a large scale; indeed it must, if the health of the nation is to be improved. nlwww.breadmatters.com
British Baker is delighted to announce that renowned TV presenter and producer Esther Rantzen CBE is to host this year’s Baking Industry Awards on Wednesday 8 September at the Park Lane Hilton, London.Rantzen has both produced and presented BBC show That’s Life, and has fronted other successful series, including Hearts of Gold and The Big Time. She has won the BBC TV Personality of the Year and is founder of the charity Childline.This year’s circus-themed black-tie event will, as ever, be attended by the key players in the industry. The evening begins with a drinks reception, followed by a three-course meal, entertainment, and the announcement of the Award winners.Associate sponsors for this year’s event feature a host of top names from the world of bakery. Warburtons is sponsor of the VIP champagne reception; Délifrance sponsors the bread rolls; Kluman & Balter sponsors the cracker raffle; the alcoholic dessert is sponsored by Thomas Lowndes; and the Champagne magnum table centres will be sponsored by Bako. Casino sponsor Cereform is offering a fantastic prize of two tickets to the Cirque du Soleil Totem show in Amsterdam, including travel and overnight accommodation.Individual tickets cost £215 + VAT. Tables (of 10 guests) are £2,050 + VAT. To book your place at BIA call Elizabeth Ellis on 01293 846593 or email [email protected] Further details are on www.bakeryawards.co.uk.
This is one in a series of profiles showcasing some of Harvard’s stellar graduates.It’s an undergraduate prerogative to sample various fields and disciplines hoping to find a life purpose. Elaine Dong was resolute about hers when she got to Harvard, and she had learned her resolve through many trials that shaped her, physically and emotionally.Dong was born with a severe cleft lip and palate, in her case so extreme that she was not expected to live, let alone eat, drink, speak, or even breathe normally.But she did all of that, though with deformities to her face and teeth that provoked some terrible taunts. After nine grueling surgeries, her face was repaired and changed — along with her outlook on life, and her ambitions.“I wanted so desperately to be normal,” Dong said of her childhood. “I didn’t know it at the time, but I was dealt one of life’s greatest hands.” Today, at 22, she is determined to become a surgeon and help change the lives of children born with congenital birth defects.“There are still moments when I cry from surprise after realizing that I have found purpose and that I feel truly happy for the first time in a decade,” she said.The surgeries also left Dong determined to overcome anger, self-hatred, and self-doubt. In a burst of confidence during her senior year of high school, she went from feeling like a shunned loner to being a member of the student council.And then she applied to Harvard.“At the end of high school, I decided I really wanted to dedicate my life to helping children who, like me, because of a health condition outside of their control, perhaps never thought they could do something more with their lives,” said Dong. “But after having a few well-performed surgeries, it can totally change their life trajectory.”After an Early Action decision, Dong found herself on a new and empowering course. She came to Harvard as a biology concentrator, but in her freshman year her passion for oil painting and animation drew her to Visual and Environmental Studies (VES) as a way to explore her creativity, maybe for the last time.As a pre-med student, Dong’s decision to seek a VES degree at Harvard became a path that has kept her close to her purpose.“I saw this as my last chance to do something that’s not totally medicine,” she said. “I think I even had a much easier time in organic chemistry because of the spatial reasoning I learned from my visual arts experience.”Dong quickly found a way to apply her VES talents. The summer of her sophomore year, she connected with the Global Smile Foundation, a Massachusetts nonprofit dedicated to helping children around the world born with congenital facial deformities. Under the direction of the foundation’s president, Usama Hamdan, she created an animated video about surgery for educating potential patients and their families. The video doubled as Dong’s final project for her “Animating Science” class.Dong also shadowed two surgeons at Boston Children’s Hospital, Bonnie L. Padwa and John Mulliken, an experience she said helped her discover her ability to connect deeply with patients while also focusing on their needs.“Harvard offered me the chance to thrive and find happiness,” she said. “I learned to feel comfortable around others, hold their hands firmly, and look them in the eye.”Dong embraced that freedom and used all four years to explore whatever called passionately to her. Each summer she found new experiences that combined her mission with her creativity. After her freshman year, Dong spent 10 weeks in Japan with a Harvard summer research program on immunology, becoming fluent in Japanese. Last summer, she spent eight weeks in South Korea putting together “Made in Korea,” a documentary exploring the popularity of elective plastic surgery and its societal impact there.Dong said her summer experiences were some of the most amazing things she has done.“Growing up I developed this sense of ‘I do things because I want to, not because I feel pressured,’” said Dong. “That’s what drives me.”In her spare time, Dong is a four-year member of the Asian American Dance Troupe. She spends more than 30 hours each week pursuing her love of traditional and contemporary dance, an art form she has enjoyed since she was 10.After graduation, she plans to relax, she said, before the fall, when she will attend Baylor College of Medicine in her hometown, Houston.“I feel like I’ve been working at a very high level of energy for a very long time and it will be nice to relax with my family for a couple of months,” Dong said. “But I will miss my friends, inspiring peers, and the insanely smart and accomplished, really talented people at Harvard.”The once painfully shy little girl now feels grounded and determined about who she is and who she wants to become.“In retrospect, the birth defects and the pain that came with it were a gift,” Dong said. “I realize I have been given a chance to convert my fire and my pain into the fiercest fuel … an indestructible desire to touch the lives of thousands of others just like me.”
Sustainable, efficient agricultural practices will be featured at this year’s Northern Nut Growers Association (NNGA) annual conference, which will be held at the Tifton Campus Conference Center from Aug. 13-16.During next month’s conference, University of Georgia scientists will share the best practices for producing specialty crops, like citrus fruits, muscadine grapes and pecan trees.“This is an important conference that UGA has the privilege of hosting and participating in. What better way to educate people than to introduce them to the research being done here on the UGA Tifton campus?” said UGA scientist Patrick Conner, who studies pecan tree and muscadine grape breeding.Conference attendees will visit various research sites at UGA-Tifton, including a muscadine grape vineyard and pecan tree orchard, during the field trip portion of the conference on Wednesday, Aug. 16. They’ll also visit the Future Farmstead, an energy-efficient home that features an edible landscape consisting of crops researched and bred at UGA-Tifton.“A lot of people attending this conference want to learn how to grow self-sustaining trees on a small property to provide food for families and friends,” said Jerry Henkin, NNGA conference chairman. “What better way to do that than through a conference like this at UGA-Tifton, where research is impacting people around the world?”This year’s conference includes trips to Fort Valley State University; the U.S. Department of Agriculture station in Byron, Georgia; a tour of the Ellis Bros. Pecans facility in Vienna, Georgia; and a stop at the Horse Creek Winery in Sparks, Georgia.“Our goal in coming to the University of Georgia and south Georgia is to meet people from the Southeast, go over the best ways to grow nuts and fruits, (and to) introduce our members to different crops that are produced in the Southeast as a commercial crop and can be grown in the backyard,” Henkin said.The NNGA consists of people interested in growing and producing nut trees. The members range from experts in nut-tree cultivation to those who are interested in learning to plant a tree.The NNGA meets once a year. Members visit amateur and commercial orchards, experimental and research sites, local nurseries, and nut-processing plants.Those interested in registering for the event can visit the conference’s website at www.nutgrowing.org/meetinfo.htm for more information. Registration is also available the day of the event.
Late Thursday night Red Cross Disaster Services volunteers responded to Main Street in St Johnsbury to meet the needs of at least 9 families displaced by a late night, four-alarm fire that raged through the residential/commercial building where they lived. The responding personnel are all members of the Northern Vermont Chapter s Disaster Action Team program. The fire appeared to have started in a convenience store on Main Street before spreading to three other buildings. There were no injuries reported.The call came in around 10:30 pm to the Red Cross On-call Disaster Duty Officer who immediately dispatched the Caledonia County Disaster Action Team. The team responded to provide immediate emergency assistance to all the families involved and to support the rehabilitation needs of firefighters and other emergency workers on the scene. Our mass care/rehabilitation personnel are there to help with the rehydration and electrolyte replacement so desperately needed by the firefighters and other emergency personnel as they work on this major structure fire. says Steve Pernicka, the chapter s Mass Care lead, Our role is to help them stay safe as they perform their very important jobs.The front lawn of the Fairbanks Museum, which is close to the actual scene, became a Family Assistance Center where each family was interviewed to determine their immediate emergency needs. The Red Cross is primarily able to assist with emergency shelter, food, clothing, medical and disaster mental health services where a verified need exists and will support the families further by providing referrals to other community support resources.While interviews were being conducted with the families directly affected by the fire, Red Cross officials received a request from the fire department to house additional individuals who were being evacuated temporarily from their apartments on Prospect Street which is in direct proximity to the blaze on Main Street. The Red Cross, its partner agencies and the entire Caledonia County community come together in times like these to support the people affected by disaster. said Tina Wood, the Red Cross Volunteer Co-County Coordinator. Wood went on to say, It is this kind of community support that helps us be successful in our mission. A team of ten Red Cross personnel worked through the night supporting the response efforts.To help the victims of this and other disasters, contributions can be made to the Northern Vermont Chapter s Disaster Relief Fund by sending them to the American Red Cross, Northern Vermont Chapter, 29 Mansfield Avenue, Burlington, VT 05401-3323. Please specify Northern Vermont Chapter Disaster Services in the memo of your check. Also, if you or someone you know are interested in volunteering in Disaster Services and responding to incidents such as this one, we would love to hear from you. Please give us a call at 802-660-9130 x110 to find out more about volunteer opportunities.Source: Red Cross. (St. Johnsbury, Vermont July 10, 2007)
Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Amazing custom handcrafted woodwork is the main selling point of this Post-Modern home listed for sale at 10 Plandome Rd. in the waterfront community of Sound Beach.Built in 2005, the four-bedroom, three-bathroom home with 3,400-square-feet of living space features custom coffered ceilings in the main living room and dining room, triple crown molding throughout the home, including through the art gallery hallway, bambo floors, and Anderson casement architectural windows.The house comes equipped with a kitchen, formal dining room, partially finished basement, office, family room, art hall, a fireplace and central air conditioning. Outside it has a two-car attached garage and porch. The seller boats extremely low energy costs.The property is less than a mile from the beach overlooking the Long Island Sound, the Rocky Point State Pine Barrens Preserve and is nearby downtown Port Jefferson. It’s about three miles from the Port Jefferson Long Island Rail Road station. It’s located in the Rocky Point School District.The asking price is $499,999-$535,000, not including the $12,236 in property taxes.The real estate agent listed for the property is Steven Maier of Realty Connect USA LI, Inc. He can be reached at 877-647-1092.
Reminiscent of a ‘60s SciFi show about mind control, I fully expected Rod Sterling to chime in as if I were watching an episode of “The Twilight Zone.”But no, it was just the voice of Liz Bishop and hundreds of other anchors from across the country droning on as they each read the exact same script, verbatim, signed sealed and delivered by Sinclair, the group that is buying up local news stations across our nation in order to promote its political agenda and brain wash us.I don’t know about anyone else in the viewing area, but WRGB’s affiliation with a group such as Sinclair that dictates the local news to its employees has made it clear to me that Channel 6 is not to be trusted to deliver unbiased, unscripted news to the Capital Region. Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion Local news was once a bastion of trusted information. But now we must rethink what we trust as accurate. Turn off Channel 6 and tune into Channel 13 or Channel 10, for they have maintained their journalistic integrity.Be afraid, be very afraid, because once our airwaves are taken over by any entity, be it conservative or liberal, our democracy is at stake.Finally, in this climate of questionable claims, the onus is on each and every one of us as Americans to check the authenticity and accuracy of the information that is out there, lest we become the robots some would like us to be.Joann Perillo-LaskySchenectadyThe writer is a member of Indivisible 518 Justice for All.More from The Daily Gazette:Schenectady, Saratoga casinos say reopening has gone well; revenue down 30%Schenectady High School senior class leaders look to salvage sense of normalcyEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationSchenectady man dies following Cutler Street dirt bike crashFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?