Letters to the Editor
With the last of the dusty bags being put away, I would like to express my thanks to all of our sponsors, parents, kids, coaches, umpires and everyone else involved in Blaine Youth Baseball this season. With over 220 kids involved, 20 teams, 43 coaches and assistants and so many parent helpers our season was full of fun, growth, exciting wins and painful losses. I appreciate everyone that was involved. Thank you!
James Bolick, Blaine Youth Baseball
From the wonderful folks who brought you the Katrina relief program… In last week’s issue of The Northern Light, Department of Homeland Security border spokesperson Mike Milne is quoted as saying border managers had decided against opening a dedicated lane for holders of enhanced driver licenses and passports.
Despite the amount of money ($8.5 million) and time spent (18 months) by the state of Washington to develop a high security form of ID that would speed travelers through our congested borders, despite the extra money and time spent by 26,000 Washingtonians who have applied for these new licenses, despite requests by both Washington and the province of B.C. to provide a dedicated lane, our procrustean border officials in all their boundless wisdom have decided not to make any special efforts beyond installing RFID readers with a database that won’t be operational until the fall.
Instead, they’re going to do things such as put two people in the booth to do one person’s job or send someone out to do traffic control or, this ought to help, have officers walk in the lanes to tell people to get their documents out. It can’t be a personnel shortage if they’ve got all these extra people milling about. And what does it matter that there already is a dedicated NEXUS lane? The same security protocols could be used for an EDL lane as a regular lane.
It is exactly this type of boneheaded management that pushes normally optimistic citizens into the depths of despair. Can’t the federal government ever get anything right? Why mix travelers who have made the effort to get the kind of ID that our government says is critical to our security with those who haven’t? Well, to paraphrase President Bush, heckuva job, Milne.
This is intended as an open letter to any individual or individuals making decisions at our local U.S. Post Office, Blaine WA 98230.
Dear post office official(s),
When I moved into my residence in Birch Bay some four years ago, my mail was delivered promptly without regard to my location or whimsy of the U.S.P.S.
During the last several months, I have noticed that Wednesday delivery of a particular item had ceased. This item is a shopping circular, which contains ads for our local grocery store, Cost Cutter and also one from Haggen which is a little further away, in Ferndale.
Out of frustration, I queried an employee of the Blaine Cost Cutter if the cessation of delivery was a cost-saving move on the part of Brown & Cole, Cost Cutter’s parent. The employee responded no and suggested that I contact my mail carrier for clarification.
Upon doing that, it was suggested that The Bellingham Herald who is responsible for publication and distribution of these flyers perhaps had curtailed their activities with regard to delivery in our area. After contacting an advertising dynamo at The Bellingham Herald, that allegation proved to be untrue. I was then told by a postal employee that my and my neighbors’ addresses had (suddenly and inexplicably) been designated as being part of an ‘auxiliary delivery route,’ which was not entitled to delivery of the Cost Cutter and Haggen flyers. The post office, however, persists in its delivery to my mailbox on Tuesday, grocery ads for Albertson’s and Safeway, neither of which do business in our local area.
Admittedly, this enigma comes nowhere close to the ‘meaning-of-life’ quandary, but I feel that as a property owner and taxpayer who buys the same 42 cents stamp for first class mail as every other customer of the Blaine U.S.P.S., I am entitled to a lucid explanation of arbitrary non-delivery of mail to which I am entitled. As a corollary, I question what other legitimate mail is being withheld because I am an ‘auxiliary route’ customer.
On behalf of the Whatcom Land Trust board of directors I want to express our delight in the successful protection of Lily Point on Point Roberts. The effort to acquire the 90 acres of forested bluff and 40 acres of tidelands was a truly collaborative enterprise involving the enthusiastic participation by dozens of people from both sides of the border. The result is the conservation of one of the most significant undeveloped shorelines remaining in the Puget Sound Basin.
An important side-benefit of Whatcom Land Trust’s acquisition of Lily Point was meeting many generous people who donated money toward the $3.5 million purchase and who helped create our June 4 celebration of that purchase.
It was wonderful to finally ignore the two borders that separate us. Point Roberts benefits from our conservation of Maple Beach and Lily Point. We benefit from now feeling truly connected to an important part of Whatcom County.
The lead on-site organizer of this celebration was Samantha Scholefield. Her initiative, positive spirit and skill proved indispensable. She arranged for the large noon lunch feeding approximately 200 people.
We also appreciate Whatcom County parks department staff. Cooperation with them is always a pleasure. Few if any land trusts in the state enjoy the positive working relationship, beginning with the executive and the council, that we have with Whatcom County government.
None of this would have happened without $3.5 million that allowed us to purchase this exceptional marine site. The money came from private donors and various government agencies such as the Puget Sound Partnership, the state Department of Ecology, state and federal Fish & Wildlife programs, and Whatcom County’s Conservation Futures Fund.
We thank Whatcom County voters who support conservation for the future, all donors large and small, and especially the residents of Point Roberts who rushed to help with this project.
June 4, 2008 marked the beginning of what we hope will be generations of enjoyment and stewardship of this remarkable community asset, Lily Point.
Chris Moench, president,
Whatcom Land Trust
Every student awaits for the day that they can finally be named a ‘senior’ at Blaine high school. Senior year is supposed to be the most memorable and fun time of a student’s life. This year has been filled with many fun activates for the seniors, but there is a specific event which made many of us think about how much fun we would have had, if the committee would have actually tried to make this an amazing year for us. The after-grad trip that is supposed to be a huge surprise, and so much fun wasn’t what we expected. The seniors already knew where we were going, and within five minutes of sitting on the school bus (when we were supposed to have a charter bus) one of the organizers of the trip, told us “You better not tick me off in these first five minutes.” It is safe to say that a power trip was coming on. Once we arrived at Western to spend the night in the rec center, it only got worse. Cell phones weren’t allowed on the trip. Being that 90 percent of us were adults, our lives outside of those walls didn’t matter. Communication with our parents/guardians was completely cut off because they were concerned that we were going to “smuggle in drugs or alcohol” and they wanted us to “focus on the trip.”
It wasn’t all bad. We had a magic show and a hypnotist, a pool, workout room and a dance floor. That was all nice, but it was hard to enjoy when we were constantly being watched, and interrogated by the chaperones.The staff of Western helping with the event were far past rude, and the chaperones except two, treated us like we were five-years-old. We were yelled at, treated like we were prisoners, and sadly, miserable. I could not wait for 6 a.m. to roll around. Senior grad trip ’08 was the biggest waste of my time, money and energy. This is only a small fraction as to what happened that night, and I can assure you, it was absolutely hideous, and nothing less than embarrassing.
On behalf of Drayton Harbor Maritime and the new community sailing program, I want to congratulate the first two classes of new sailors who recently completed all of their U.S. Sailing Association certification requirements.
The community is welcome to observe the next new class of sailors go through their paces this Thursday or Friday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Blaine Harbor Marina gate #3.
Better yet, call Ron at 360/332-8082 and sign up for one of the upcoming week-long youth or adult classes in early July.
The Northern Light recently hired Western Washington University journalism student Coral Garnick as our summer intern.
Coral is currently working toward a bachelor’s degree in journalism and plans to pursue a degree in print journalism at a large, daily newspaper.
She grew up in the small towns of Sitka and Port Alexander, Alaska where she fished for salmon with her father every summer on the family’s trolling vessel. This will be Coral’s first summer not fishing, instead she will be interning here until August.
She enjoys kayaking, biking, softball and writing feature and human interest stories.
“Blaine kind of reminds me of home because it is a small town with one major street,” she said. “It’s nice that way.”
The Northern Light welcomes letters to the editor; however, the opinions expressed are not those of the editor. Letters must include name, address and daytime telephone number for verification. Letters must not exceed 350 words and may be edited or rejected for reasons of legality, length and good taste. Thank-you letters should be limited to 10 names. A fresh viewpoint on matters of general interest to local readers will increase the likelihood of publication. Writers should avoid personal invective. Unsigned letters will not be accepted for publication. Requests for withholding names will be considered on an individual basis. Only one letter per month from an individual correspondent will be published.
send your letter to:
225 Marine Drive, Blaine, WA 98230 or fax 360/332-2777.
The Northern Light welcomes letters to the editor; however, the opinions expressed are not those of the editor. Letters must include name, address and daytime telephone number for verification. Letters must not exceed 350 words and may be edited or rejected for reasons of legality, length and good taste. Thank you letters are limited to five individuals or groups. A fresh viewpoint on matters of general interest to local readers will increase the likelihood of publication. Writers should avoid personal invective. Unsigned letters will not be accepted for publication. Requests for withholding names will be considered on an individual basis. Only one letter per month from an individual correspondent will be published.
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