Mariano: Time for Worcester City Council to ‘Do your job’ | “It’s hard to blame Ed Augustus for following in Mike O’Brien’s footsteps. The public seemed to be satisfied with the O’Brien model and it was certainly easier than establishing an equal partnership with an unorganized group of part-time city councilors. My criticism is of the mayor and City Council for abdicating their role in our government.” Raymond V. Mariano, former mayor of Worcester, will comment on his hometown every Sunday in Worcester Sun.
Editorial: ‘No’ on Question 4 — recreational marijuana can wait | With passage of marijuana ballot measures in 2008 and 2012, the state has struck a reasonable balance on regulation vs. latitude with respect to this mind-altering drug. Let’s not tip the balance further. Marijuana is still a danger, even more so than decades ago, and the state’s proposed new regulations are not yet ready for this fight.
Sina-cism: Fear the bozos you know | “The urge to toss the balance of my Guinness in her face passed quickly. I realized that she was young, lives in a swing state, and still believes as I once did in choosing the lesser of two evil clowns. It will take a lot more time — and far worse conditions than we currently experience — to turn the majority against the incumbents Tweedledum and Tweedledee.” Chris Sinacola on his particular fear of clowns and maybe something about the election, too.
Sun Spots with Hitch [Vol. 106]: Feeling sunk in Worcester | One good thing about severe weather causing dangerous flash flooding, power outages and thousands upon thousands of dollars in damages? It brings municipal government and media closer together. Which is all anyone’s ever wanted, of course! Everybody’s a team player when someone’s Altima is floating down Main Street. But then the water recedes and we’re left with nothing to do but nitpick. So, Hitch dried off his sketch pad and got to work.
Letter to the editor
Sun Mail: ‘What about 800 Worcester kids on public charter school waiting lists?’ | “Approximately half of the public schools in Worcester are ranked as underperforming, according to the state. What about the public school students in those schools? Recent MCAS/PARCC data from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education found that 100 percent of urban charter schools in Massachusetts received the state’s highest academic rankings.”
On Beacon Hill: Petty among mayors to call for extending Prevention and Wellness Trust Fund; Pike transition expected to take a toll | The original funding, $60 million over four years (Worcester got $6M), is slated to run out at the end of June 2017. “This program is changing the way we think about wellness. We need to realize that health is not simply the absence of illness,” Petty told the Sun in an email late Friday. “This program is about taking healthcare out of the traditional clinical setting and changing behavior patterns in our most vulnerable populations.” Also, the Mass Pike will never be the same — find out why officials suggest taking the train if you can.
Q&A: Sam James, the Worcester guy from ‘The Voice’ | His latest album hit big on iTunes earlier this month, and for reality show veteran Sam James, the momentum only grows from there. “I’ll tell you what it says a lot about. It says a lot about Worcester. I have such a strong fanbase here and in New England. … I had all my friends and others from this city sharing my tracks on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram. You really can’t say enough about the support that I get from this city.” The city-bred singer-songwriter sits down with Patrick Sargent to tell the Sun what’s happening next.
The unbelievably true story of Augustine Kanjia continues …
Part 25: Final Problem Lands Me in Dakar | “We left for Banjul to board the worrisome ferry. It was overloaded that morning and dirty, but we made it through. We were praying for a safe journey the entire time. I had made some friends on the way, and we ate some food from those friends. Was the border a safe place for us? No! But yes. Glen’s health was paramount, and no one wants to see a child die.” Another clever diversion helps the family clear its final hurdles for resettlement in America — and Augustine and his wife hear: “You will go to Massachusetts.”
Worcester Weekly: Spooky hayride, Assumption organ recital + more things to do to start November | Nonprofit organizations, hills and historical heroes — Worcester has lots of those. But organ recitals? Well, now, those are more like unicorns or streets without ongoing construction. And so organ recitals featuring French music from the Romantic era would be like finding a Porygon while wandering through Green Hill Golf Course as Billy Breault and Sarai Rivera go one up on Moses Dixon and Kate Campanale with a birdie on the 9th. You know you have to find out what’s going on there! Plus lots of other stuff to do, too.
Inbox [Oct. 30]: MassDiGI and Pacheco honored, ‘Ice Storm’ author at Clark, Delta Dental pledges $20K to mobile effort, Bravehearts named top organization, WCLOC holds auditions | Interesting and worthwhile things happen every day in our community. Alas, we can’t cover them all. That’s where Inbox comes in, to offer readers an easily digestible compilation of interesting and noteworthy items you and your neighbors keep telling us about. Have a release or a photo you or your group would like to share? Let us know by emailing it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure to include a link to the full release on your site or Facebook page so we can include it and send Sun members your way.