Sun Spots with Hitch [Vol. 116]: A Joe Petty fireside chat

Worcester is under siege. Not by violence or economic disparity, necessarily, or even pigeons or college students, but by rhetoric and hyperbole. And now, maybe more than ever, fear is spreading.

Hitch’s greatest hits: Gomez and Healey and Fresolo — oh my!

Our estimable mayor, hizzoner Mr. Petty, has been around long enough to see days like these ebb and flow — but even he’s not sitting idly by this time. He wants Worcester folks to know, he’s there for you, which is admirable.

Also: downtown gentrification? Still on! Here’s Hitch.

On Beacon Hill: Mr. Moore, state senator, goes to Washington

“It’s a very impressive group that’s been assembled to actually look at the full range of information-sharing that’s necessary in the law enforcement community and it’s not strictly geared towards police, FBI,” Millbury-based state Sen. Michael Moore said. Moore isn’t the only Bay State Democrat finding a position of influence in post-Trump politics.

Video: Gov. Baker on ‘bathroom bill’ implementation, DCR scandal resignation

Watch Mass. Gov. Charlie Baker react to the possible challenges of implementing the transgender protection laws, known collectively as the “bathroom bill,” which went into effect Oct. 1. And his thoughts on a top-ranking administration official’s resignation following a summer scandal.

Inbox [Sept. 11]: Youth health panel seeks members, Community Unity event set for Thursday at East Middle, Worcester Police appoint LGBTQ liaison, registration open for free culinary arts certificate program

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.

Worcester Weekly: Worcester State’s new gym + 5 more things to do, Sept. 11-17

Fifty-two-point-six [insert Dr. Evil voice] MILLION dollars! More than 100,000 square feet of athletic complex! If that feels a little too big for Worcester State, well, then you haven’t been down Chandler Street in a while (probably stuck behind a construction crew on Flagg, or Shrewsbury … or, really, any Worcester street right now. But we digress). So, there’ll be a ribbon-cutting … and lots of talking this week. Why not round it out with a little high-quality football action on Salisbury Street?

Worcester Weekly: Worcester Pride, Top Cop Game + more to do, Sept. 4-10

First, an hour of free networking — but, I mean, is there ever any event in Worcester that doesn’t involve a networking period? No. The answer is 100 percent, No! Never happened. Worcester Pride is distinct in many ways, mainly because it’s held in September in order to involve students from the area’s many colleges and universities. They’re also pretty good at keeping the community at large involved. So, y’know, get involved! We’ve got high school football and all sorts of other fun stuff, too.

Sun Shine: Brattle Street, last stop on the way to freedom for Worcester LGBT asylum seekers

 “Jeffry was fired from his job as a teacher, he could not go shopping and had to hide in his home. His family threw him out of the house at 17 years old, but even at home Jeffry was not allowed to eat dinner unless he brought his own utensils and plate. He was not even allowed to worship at his church.” From Jamaica, where homophobia runs rampant, Jeffry made his way to Worcester, where he found not just acceptance but caring assistance. New Sun contributor Sloane M. Perron tells the story.

Rainbow Readers offers new chapter for Worcester LGBT community

“Back in November, I was frustrated because I knew of book clubs nearby, but none that interested me. So I decided I might as well start my own.” Sarah Slocum said she discovered the closest LGBT book club was in an Arlington library some 50 miles away. Now, though, folks like Sarah only have to make their way to James Street. New Sun contributor Danielle Cutillo takes a closer look at one of the city’s newest LGBT resources.

On Beacon Hill: Worcester-based gun rights leader has harsh words for Healey ‘copycat’ ban

“This is like the day of infamy for Maura Healey. She’s going to awaken the sleeping giant of gun owners in Massachusetts. There’s nearly half a million of us in Massachusetts — Republican, Democrat and Independent — and she’s really woken up a sleeping giant, and her chances of getting elected governor or keeping her office could be over,” said Christopher Pinto, Worcester-based leader of a statewide gun rights organization. Maybe you want to see what else he had to say …