Letter: Right ideas, wrong word

Posted

To the Editor:Bob Stannard's recent opinion piece- "Stand Up, or Wish You Had" calls attention to current racial issues in Vermont and the need for residents to become more aware of, and active in addressing these problems. Unfortunately, at the beginning of the article, Stannard states, "According to the US Census Bureau, in 2010 Vermont's African-American population more than doubled from the previous census. That sounds alarming until you realize that the number grew from roughly 3,000 to 6,2777. Blacks still comprise only 1 percent of our population."Stannard's use of the word 'alarming' in describing the growth of the African American population characterizes this growth as something negative, akin to an epidemic, and clearly counters the intent of his article. I have no doubt, based on the rest of his piece, that Stannard meant to suggest that the trend was surprising and encouraging, not alarming, yet the use of 'alarming' did make it to print and was clearly a poor choice of words that needs to be reflected upon.Pablo ElliottManchester, Vermont


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