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  •    Many New Yorkers, whose state was among those in recent years that turned a long-overdue gender-blind eye on marriage, rightly celebrated the Supreme Court’s decision last week on the Defense of Marriage Act. Locally, we were pleased to learn that the plaintiff in this landmark case was a part-time Southampton resident, Edith Windsor.

  •    Doesn’t anyone in East Hampton Town Hall do his or her homework? That is a fair question given the disregard for protected farmland that has become apparent recently.

  •    On a busy summer’s day, our local ambulance squads respond to an ever-increasing number of calls. Some of the emergencies they rush to are just that — matters of life and death. Other calls are less urgent, but the responders treat everyone with the utmost care. These volunteers are exemplary citizens, each having undergone dozens, if not hundreds, of hours’ training and refresher courses, as well as having devoted long periods of time to taking care of gear and answering calls.

  •    There are perhaps hundreds of people engaged in the South Fork’s underground housing economy, at least if the online listings on Craigslist, Airbnb, and others are to be believed. An interesting account appeared in this newspaper last week about the now-ubiquitous short-term rental, in which landlords charge hundreds of dollars a night for temporary stays, turning ordinary houses on streets much like yours, no doubt, into hotels or motels, for all intents and purposes. What is baffling is why it is all so out in the open, despite local regulations barring the practice.

  •    By a strict party-line vote, the East Hampton Town Board approved a giant party called Shark Attack Sounds for the Fourth of July weekend in Montauk despite obvious concerns that the event had grown too large to be held either at its original location on East Lake Drive or at the Montauk Yacht Club.     

  •    The juxtaposition could not be more stark: East Hampton Town does not take adequate care of the public bathing beaches it already has and yet town officials appear to be thinking seriously about adding more. We say, not so fast. A little housekeeping and assumption-checking needs to occur first.

  •    New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has the right idea about sea-level rise, global warming, and the threat of catastrophic storms. East Hampton Town, and to a similar degree other local governments, have so far pretended these problems do not exist, although they may simply be paralyzed by their enormity. The discrepancy, however, is startling.

  •    Sag Harbor voters will choose a mayor and two board members on Tuesday at a pivotal time for the village. 
       Four candidates are vying for mayor: the two-term incumbent, Brian Gilbride, Pierce Hance, who held the post in the 1990s, Sandra Schroeder, who was the village clerk for many years, and Bruce Tait, the chairman of the village’s harbor committee. For us, the choice comes down to Mr. Hance or Mr. Tait; Mr. Gilbride has been too divisive a figure to stay on.

  •    Now in its second season, the Montauk Beach House, a hotel, bar, and music venue, remains in the news for good reason: How the modest former Ronjo Motel turned into a far larger business complex with only the barest of planning review is a key question for East Hampton Town officials — and the electorate.

  •    A photograph sent by a friend said it all. Visitors to Indian Wells Beach in Amagansett about an hour before sunset Saturday would have been treated to a mountain of garbage overflowing the metal bins and left haphazardly at the head of the parking lot. Looking closely at the photo, the preponderance of beer cans and empty cartons is apparent — most are Coors or Bud Light, which for some reason is the beverage of choice for the Indian Wells groups. A couple sits on a bench, taking in the evening air, just a few feet from the groaning bins.