During my adult life in Connecticut, there have been occasional reports of Ku Klux Klan activity in northeastern Connecticut. Many years ago, there was a large rally in Scotland, CT which got national press as they invited some major KKK leader to attend and made it quite a show. (Quite an embarasment to the Fairfield County set.) But these instances were rare, usually it was just troublemaking, drunk rednecks running around in pickup trucks creating a ruckus. I have often thought about those old news rerotps when sitting through the towns interminable meetings, and observing the antics of the CPS characters. Angry, ignorant, often dirty; catcalling and intimidating (mostly female) attendees; making the entire scene too ugly for the participation of well meaning people. One man is regularly, clearly drunk; one man’s eyes looking so glazed he appears psychotic; another stinking of diesel fuel. And then there are the old stories people being hit by trucks in the town hall parking lot; pet goats being stolen and staked out in the woods to starve; lawns being run over by trucks in the night; sabres found staked in front lawns; rumors that some CPS members carry guns to the meetings. And the context the vice-like grip of the registrars and poll-workers on the voting mechanics during elections and referenda; the intellectual leadership of Gus Massiello, Ernie Wetzel and Jay Livernois publicly articulating their conspiracy theories; the massive turnout of senior citizens at the budget referenda who have been terrified about losing their homes. This town has a strong air of intimidation. Worst of all is the sense that the town’s public education system has been politically surrounded by the seniors; by CPS; by the Fire Department; and by Woodstock Academy continually pilloried so that everyone gets their share of the money except of course the victim the Woodstock Public Schools. As with any victim, many want but are hesitant to help; someone else will certainly do it. Only more discouraging is that after the last election, when the town appeared to elect a more enlightened, educated Democratic ticket, the same old dynamics continue to play out just with better articulation. And most of those people pretend its not so bad, or not to notice; become too busy; develop a rationale for inaction; look away from instead of at the problem. Anyway, that’s what I think about when I look at this town. It reminds me of a small town in Mississippi with a Klan problem. And then I consider that Woodstock Academy, the area high school, manipulates these political dynamics to the advantage of their football stadium, and it seems almost sickening. And I feel embarassed that I raised my children here. But, hey, I sure am glad you got to see a turkey, John, and thanks for helping us reminisce.