Famed author George Orwell once said that “if liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.”
While many might turn to the Opinion pages here in The Riverdale Press each week finding words they agree with, there are many times they do not.
Yet, that’s what freedom is all about. It’s easy to protect speech we like. It’s the speech we don’t like that requires more extreme measures, like Constitutional amendments.
Seven decades ago, David and Celia Stein launched this paper not only to ensure this community was well-informed, but also that this community was heard. While today’s political polarization might seem troublesome, it’s no different than it’s always been. People disagree — but we live with those disagreements not only by sharing what we believe, but also by listening to what others believe.
Over the past year, you’ve shared and we have listened. We welcomed 257 unique authors this year — the most since 2009 — publishing more than 168,800 words (the most since, well, we can’t even tell you how far back that goes).
While many of the conversations focused on this year’s presidential election, there were many topics tackled at a far more local level:
Anti-Semitism. The coronavirus. Preserving local history. The coronavirus. Bail reform. The coronavirus. Saving our mass transit system. And did we mention the coronavirus?
There were so many topics from the more than 370 letters to the editor and columns published this year that we would have to set aside a tremendous amount of space to list them all.
Instead, let’s use that space for something else. Let’s thank all of our writers.
We aren’t an effective newspaper unless we ensure your voice is included. Our reporters work hard to include that voice, but our Opinion pages guarantees we don’t miss a single word.
Robert Abate, Esmilda Abreu-Hornbostel, Rhoda Alben-Aronson, Lorraine Alippe, Avner Amarilio, Gary Axelbank.
Alexandra Baird, Irene Baldwin, Bill Baskin, Sheryl Berk, Zachary Berman, Alessandra Biaggi, Joe Bialek, Gene Binder, Pauline Binder, Darnley Bleckles, Cheryl Bluestone, Sylvia Blumenthal, Lude Bonnet, Charles Boustany, Jamaal Bowman, Perry Brass, Sam Bromberg, Steven Budihas, Deirdre Burke.
Fernando Cabrera, Matt Cagle, Andrew Campanella, John Canny, David Carlson, Richard Carranza, Craig Casey, Evan Casper-Futterman, Ellen Chapnick, Susan Chasky, Stephanie Coggins, Andrew Cohen, Ed Cohen, Estelle Cohen, Sam Cohen, Howard Cohn, Elizabeth Cooke-Levy, Doris Cordero, Barbara Curran.
Lisa Daub, Lou Deholczer, Gage Delgado, Bill Devlin, Helen de Pinho, George Diaz Jr., Irene Diaz-Reyes, Kena Dijiba, Eric Dinowitz, Jeffrey Dinowitz, Sue Ellen Dodell, Deborah Dolan, Clare Donohue, Naomi Dorfman, Vonetta Dudley, Fiona Dutcher, Sophie-Ann Dwyer.
Alisa Eilenberg, Robert Bernard Eisman, Monet Elzey, Eliot Engel, David Epstein, Stewart Epstein, Adriano Espaillat, Richard Espinal, Judy Esterquest, Barbara Estrin, Isaac Evans-Frantz, Morgan Evers.
Janice Farnham, Bruce Feld, Mike Felker, Stanley Ferber, Theodore Fettman, Jose Figueroa, Chris Fink, Jennifer Firestone, Wyldon King Fishman, Judy Fletcher, Andrea Flores, Fran Freedman, Ezra Friedlander, David Froimchuk.
Rachel Garnick, Derek Garrison-Bedell, Robin Ganzert, Andom Ghebreghiorgis, Isaac Geld, Adam Geller, Bonnie Geller-Geld, David Gellman, Emmaia Gelman, Diane Burstin Gerber, Larry Gevirtz, Kirsten Gillibrand, Rosemary Ginty, James Gisondi, Michael Gold, Gerald Goldsmith, Alvin Gordon, Jack Gorman, Mitchel Greene, Josh Greenfield, Perry Grossman, Shelby Gutleber.
Nina Hall, Jessica Haller, Christina Harcar, Nickolaus Hayes, Miriam Levine Helbok, Michael Heller, Titus Herman, Howard Horowitz, Crystal Hudson, Melvin Hunter, Paulette Hutterer, Avrum Hyman.
Daris Jackson, Sura Jeselsohn, Daniel Johnson, Kim Johnson, Matthew Johnson.
Barbara Lynn Krail, Noah Kaminsky, Rita Karig, Valerie Kaufman, Sandy Kimmer, Lila King, Dee Knight, Helen Krim, Jack Kupferman.
John LaMattina, Derickson Lawrence, Beth Levin, Barbara Bobbi Linn, Roberta Lipman, Claire Lobel, Sara Lord.
Patricia Manning, Carole Mantell, Steve Markbreiter, Evy Mayer, Patrick McManus, Chris McShane, Destiny Medina, Louise Melling, Hank Miller, David Mirtz, Charles Moerdler, Helen Morik, Alex Mustelier.
Adam Neufeld, Marion Novak, David Nussenbaum.
Catherine O’Brien, Udi Ofer, Vivian Oleen, Esther Ortiz, Jeffrey Otto, Bill Owens, Deborah Owens.
Dan Padernacht, Judy Patrick, Lynda Paull, Larry Penner, Jason Peri, Diane Perillo, Jonathan Pezzi, Elizabeth Pimentel, Peter Pitts, Anthony Porco, Joseph Potasnik, Elchanan Poupko, Becky Preve, Wayne Price.
Christian Rasmussen, Sammy Ravelo, Steve Reich, Daniel Reingold, Joseph Resto, Madeline Ritter, Chris Rizzo, Buzz Roddy, Nancy Romano, Jessica Rosberger, Beth Rosen, Hedy Rosen, Gay Rosenblum-Kumar, Kurt Roth, Kiara Royer, Robert Rubenstein, George Russell.
Alan Saks, S.M. Salam, Lorelei Salas, S. Ri Han Samman, Carol Samol, Marcia Santoni, Jennifer Scarlott, Bill Schleicher, Adele Schwartz, Eric Seiff, Naureen Shah, Jack Shaifer, James Sheehan, Bobbi Siegelbaum, Steve Siegelbaum, Micah Sifry, George Silos, Ravi Guru Singh, Sat Hari Singh Khalsa, Geoffrey Smith, Tim Smith, Harry Soloway, Laura Spalter, Nina Habib Spencer, David Spero, Jay Stanley, Eytan Yoles Stanton, Richard Stein, Mike Stinavage, Adam Stoler, Julien Strickland, Penny Sundel.
Gary Talamone, Paul Thaler, Ndeye Thioubou, Mike Thirtle, Kenneth Thorpe, Ann Toback, Milan Toma, Marcia Trummer, Matthew Turov.
Judith Veder, Michael Villanova, Thomas Vorsteg.
Jim Wacker, Deborah Wallace, Anne Walle, Richard Warren, Howard Wasserfall, Isabela Watson, Norman Wechsler, Ron Wegsman, William Weinbaum, Michael Weinstein, Cora Weiss, Dana Williams, Gary Wockner, Paul Wolf, Peter Wolf, Jessica Woolford, Ed Yaker.