We have much work ahead of us but, with the support of our readers, we hope to make this a community home. In an era when our society has become splintered, we want to provide common ground for civil discourse.

More and more lately, we face choices brought on by the hype of social media and of talk radio. We have to decide if reporting on often false claims raised there will amplify the falsehoods or expose them.

We would urge choosing a symbol that calls the community together, much as the old school bell did.

Elected officials should not use their posts to wreak vengeance. Nor should they use police to break the law.

We understand that a school’s business practices committee is charged with counting costs. But we believe calculations would show that, if the fire departments in Guilderland went the way of the ambulance service where paid professionals replaced volunteers, the taxpayers, all of them, would bear a greater burden than for the first-responders’ break.

“Strawberries are sacred to the Mohawks,” Ward Stone told me several years ago. “When somebody dies, they will say, ‘She is eating strawberries now,’ not that she died but that she is eating strawberries.”

Ward Stone is eating strawberries now.

Rather than the bitterness and the name-calling and finger-pointing we see on the national level, Democrat Dustin Reidy learned from the Republicans who had rejected his first proposal.

These days, each one of us, as citizens, have to be on our guard to see that the United States’ great experiment in democracy succeeds. It seems it would be easy in a small town for those representing the people to be attuned to their needs.