A time for quiet contemplation


To the Editor:

This Saturday, June 6, is National Trails Day, an opportunity to celebrate the great outdoors. For the past quarter-century the Martha’s Vineyard Land Bank has recognized Trails Day with a cross-Island hike. It has proven quite popular, but this year, like so much in life, the hike has been canceled due to coronavirus.

I plan to take my own cross-Island hike this Saturday, from Second Bridge to Manaquayak Preserve, meandering through Land Bank and Sheriff’s Meadow and State Forest properties. Thank goodness they are open for all, especially during this pandemic.

 My intent is to make this solemn, solo expedition in memory of the 100,000-plus Americans who have died from COVID-19. I recognize the financial pain wrought by the economic shutdown induced by the pandemic. And I want to reflect on the untimely death of George Floyd, which has brought such upheaval across our country.

This is neither a fundraiser nor public relations campaign. Rather, it is my effort to come to grips with the tragic consequences brought on by this epidemic. No one knows how our current situation will play out, but I believe it deserves contemplation and consideration.


Thomas Dresser
Oak Bluffs


  1. Maybe also a little thoughtful consideration of the thousands who fell on the beaches of Normandy.

    • Since you don’t mind making additional suggestions for how a deeply thoughtful, loving, and caring man spends his contemplative time during these painful times, I don’t mind suggesting that you take time on the anniversary of the Normandy invasion to reflect on why you promote the stereotype that “immigrants dilute” our nation. Those who died at Normandy did not die for views that are anti-American.

      • Jackie…I and most everyone I know, both democrat, republican, liberal, conservative, black, white, brown, etc., welcomes with open arms, those that come here LEGALLY… what is it that you don’t understand about that? And please, this is a question that does not warrant some snarky reply. Thank you.

        • Scratch a “legal immigrants are fine” and underneath you’ll find someone who categorically opposes non-caucasian immigration. You aren’t fooling anybody.

        • Of course you got a snarky reply, TQ. It’s like clockwork. I swear the moral narcissists in this angry little echo chamber all huddle up and do rock-paper-scissors to pick who hurls the next insult at interlopers like you. Mind your betters or begone, knave.

          • Our immigration laws are bad on purpose. They are designed to generate an illegal underclass that has neither the protections nor costs of domestic labor. Nobody has a duty to obey iniquitous laws. As for the discourse, only one thing will improve it –the slow filling up of graveyards with racists.

  2. Great stuff, Thomas. Thank you.

    When biking, walking, jogging or skipping (yes, I still do), it is hard to imagine life without these wondrous avenues of the soul.

    Hail the trails! 🚲 🚶 🚶‍♀️


  3. TQ, almost everybody you know including republicans and conservatives welcome legal immigrants with open arms? You are saying that with a straight face? Don’t we have a President who is doing his best to significantly limit legal immigration from “sh*thole” countries (i.e., countries with predominantly black citizens) not to mention Muslim countries? All the republican and conservative people you know sound like outliers!

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