Letters to the Editor: September 27-October 3, 2012

Published on Thu, Sep 27, 2012
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The Editor:
Your paper recently ran a piece on a field trip that the Plover was doing on September 18 for free. It sounded like a great experience. We brought our five children. Everyone had a great time going out on the ocean, collecting samples and then viewing the microscopic organisms back at the marina. If it hadn’t been for the Plover, our children wouldn’t have been able to go out on the ocean in a boat for the first time in their lives.
My wife and I and our twins and triplets would like to thank you, Raindrop, director Richard Sturgill, Captain Sam and eco-toxicologist Janet Pickard for making such a beautiful and educational experience possible.

Steve Landis
Blaine

Really Pressed For Time

The Editor:

When The Northern Light shows up in the mailbox I always look through it. It’s the most relevant media regarding my community. I read the news, look at the ads and sometimes clip a coupon or two. My wife and I do appreciate the publication. Thank you very much.
However, one of the most important community related features of TNL, the “Letters to the Editor,” is a continuing frustration. My life is still busy enough that I really don’t appreciate having to, at least, scan each submission to find out what it’s about. Most times I just look at who wrote the letter, and if I recognize the name I look back at the letter itself.
In any other publication I read, “Letters to the Editor” always seem to have a title giving at least some indication of the subject of the letter. Do you think the editorial staff of The Northern Light might be able to add a subject line above said letters? I for one would greatly appreciate it and would be much more likely to read the opinions and thoughts on what is important to other members of our community.
Do a little opinion poll on this and see what shakes.

Dennis Withner
Blaine

(Ed. Note: What do our readers want? Let us know.)

The Editor:

On Friday afternoon, September 21, I was privileged to attend a Lummi Nation celebration of the air, land and water at Cherry Point. Along the beach, at the end of Gulf Road, members of the Lummi Nation and guests joined together for two- and one-half hours of stories, songs, dances and prayers offered as a tribute to the natural and cultural heritage of the site. Tribal leaders shared their deeply personal beliefs related to the fact that this is the sacred burial site of their ancestors. At the conclusion, Lummi youth served their elders and all guests a generous meal of salmon.
Many can relate to the Lummi Nation’s concerns regarding the threat of toxic coal-dust clouds over our homes, polluted storm water runoff and illegally discharged bilge water from giant bulk-carrier ships poisoning our local waters. But I submit that none of us can even remotely understand what it must be like to face the possibility of a massive coal terminal being built over the burial site of family members! And one must wonder how corporate business practices can include such a proposal or how any
Whatcom County council member could responsibly permit such a disgrace to move forward?
Lummi Nation leaders point out that we are “all in the same boat” and, if we are to protect and preserve this beautiful area, “we must all paddle together” … to stop the proposed Gateway Pacific Terminal at Cherry Point.

Michael Crum
Birch Bay

The Editor:

The Family Service Center wants to send a huge thank you to the community members who donated money and/or school
supplies for needy students in Blaine school district. We were able to provide 240 low-income students with school supplies and backpacks because of donations from this amazing community! Thank you to all the individual community members, churches and clubs for caring about the students in Blaine. Students who would not otherwise be prepared for school came to school the first day prepared, with supplies, ready to learn!

Jessie Burton, Family Service Center
Blaine


The Editor:

Thank you, Sheriff Bill Elfo, for your very informative guest editorial, “Large-scale grow operations a major hazard.”

Jennifer Plombon
Blaine


The Editor:

Thanks to four Canadians! One day this August I was floundering for more than three hours in my small boat off Birch Bay State Park, when finally these four Canadians rushed to help. My outboard just kept stopping and large swells were pushing and bouncing me off the beach. The Canadians helped me drag the boat onto the beach and tie it to a log. I had just enough fuel but they thought I should have fresh gas and more of it. Two decided to take my spare tank and get fresh gas. I did not have my wallet on me … they said no worry. They returned with new gas. That still didn’t work. The engine still kept cutting out. One of the fellows then checked my gas filter and spark plugs to no avail. Then, at the fifth hour of getting nowhere, they decided to pull and push the boat back to the boat launch. I was exhausted, with no food or water for over five hours, but will be ever grateful to the unknown Canadians who came to my rescue as others on the beach just watched my distress without helping.

Jay James
Birch Bay

The Editor:

I would like to respond to the question posed by Mr. and Mrs. Neem in last week’s paper. They asked if anyone, besides themselves, has noticed the shabby condition of American flags at several locations around the county. I have.
What bothers me even more is seeing an American/Canadian “combo-flag” flying above one of our local eateries.
There is a law concerning when, where and how the flag should be displayed. It’s Public Law 94-344. Part of that law states: “The flag should never have placed upon it, nor on any part of it, nor attached to it any mark, insignia, word, figure, design, picture or drawing of any nature.”
I interpret that to mean that the insignia of another country should not be displayed on the same piece of cloth as the American flag. Yet there it is, pandering for the Canadian dollar. Am I wrong?

John Yirak
Blaine


The Editor:

I would like to let the Blaine football team and coaches know how proud we are of them. Friday, September 14’s game at Lakewood was an outstanding effort by our team. They had several injuries but kept on fighting to the end. In the final seconds of the game they were in a position to tie the game and send it into overtime.
In what was to be the last play of the game, Mario (Gobbato) ran it across the goal line and everyone cheered on the Blaine side of the field, but after a short time the officials decided that he did not make it. It was very obvious to the team and all of the fans that Mario made it, the call was wrong, and we all knew it. The boys from Blaine were very upset and so were many of the fans. It seemed like the officials wanted to go home so they made it so it would not go into overtime.
We all know the truth and support our team no matter what, in my opinion the Blaine football team is outstanding, showing a lot of heart and respect for each other. Our team wants to win and it shows through their efforts, sportsmanship and the love of the game. Keep playing strong, keep playing hard – I believe you guys can go all the way.

Rick and Charlene Muder
Blaine

The Editor:

The article about Whatcom Water Week in the September 13-19 edition of The Northern Light was for the most part well done; however, it is incumbent upon me to correct an error of fact that states I am the captain of the Plover. I am not the venerable Plover’s captain – Sam Clemens is the Plover’s captain and has been the Plover’s captain now for many years.
Captain Sam does an excellent job at his craft and should be recognized as the ferry’s captain. It is true that I hold a U.S. Coast Guard Merchant Mariner license (captain’s license) and in the past have run the Plover full time and still do on special occasions; however, Captain Sam is the Plover’s captain and that’s just the way we like it.

Fair winds.
Richard C. Sturgill
Blaine

The Editor:

I’ve noticed that when multiple GOP signs are placed in yards, they are precisely spaced and aligned. They march in place in an orderly line – kind of like robots. On the other hand, Democratic candidate signs are haphazard like a random group of people milling around, talking, exchanging ideas. They are dynamic and full of energy. I think this says something about how the two groups think and what they stand for.
Take for example the local state representative race in the 42nd District between Jason Overstreet (R) and Natalie McClendon (D). Jason marches in place and stays in line, but doesn’t go anywhere. Nothing gets done. The status quo remains. No new ideas, just the same old worn-out rhetoric. All talk, no action.
On the other hand, Natalie McClendon is on the move. She has talked with hundreds of our local citizens and she understands our values and our concerns. She is ready and willing to move forward. She has ideas, solutions and the guts to get things done.
So my fellow voters, do you want to stagnate, march in place, and continue to be duped into calling that “good enough”? Or are you ready to move forward, implement workable solutions and get things done? If you are ready to roll, ready to move forward, ready to get problems solved, get ready to vote for Natalie McClendon, State Representative for the 42nd District.

Gretchen McFarland
Sumas

The Editor:

I’m a Whatcom County senior citizen who is tired of our state government being attacked as part of the problem rather than being effectively used as part of the solution. That is why I’m writing in support of Natalie McClendon for 42nd District State Representative. The GOP incumbent, Jason Overstreet, is part of the new generation of right wing anarchists whose mission is to take away government protections for vulnerable citizens and our environment to leave us to the tender mercies of market-based solutions. As we all know, the outcome of that approach is that the poor get more desperate and the rich get richer.
Natalie is one of the small business owners who are being hurt by the corporate based government policies Overstreet exemplifies. In the legislature she will work to restore an equitable tax base, rebuild critical infrastructure and improve the educational opportunities that made our country great. Natalie will help rebuild a productive job creating economy for 21st century Washington State.
We need new energy and fresh ideas in Olympia. Vote Natalie McClendon.

Jim Hansen
Bellingham

The Editor:

As a former mock trial student of Deborra Garrett, I wish to endorse her for Superior Court Judge.  
I met Deborra when I was 15 years old, and Deborra was our volunteer mock trial coach at Meridian High School. With her constructive criticism and passion for the law, she helped our team make it to the state tournament competition. Since she started volunteering at MHS in 2001, Deborra has educated many, many Meridian students. She showed me and all the other students over the years how important it is not to only understand the law but also to be unbiased, ethical and fair. Deborra was more than just a mock trial coach. She is a life role model for me and many others. I hold her in the utmost respect.
Deborra has a long history representing people in private practice and has volunteered countless hours of community service. She has worked many years in the Superior Court as well as in the federal court system. Deborra has volunteered her time pro bono for the community, acting as legal advisor for the YWCA as well as Womencare Shelter. You will hear from anyone who has ever interacted with Deborra that her poise, intelligence and professionalism earn her the highest respect in any and all situations. Deborra Garrett is exactly the person we need as the next Whatcom County Superior Court Judge.
Jessica Greco
Bellingham

The Editor:

I’m sorry but the simple fact is Representative Vincent Buys needs to go. While he is personally quite nice, his voting record is weak, bordering on terrible. At a time when we desperately needed someone with sway and influence to bring resources to our community, Buys voted against infrastructure bills, job bills, grants for early education, funding for schools, funding for roads and funding for a whole range of basic functions of government. Our communities needed a champion and instead, they got a bench-warmer.
That is why I urge everyone to vote for Matt Krogh for State Representative. He’s not your usual Democrat, he brings a laser-eye to budgets and lean government sensibilities. He will do the right thing and stand up for what we need, fight for our jobs and not be tied to the party line. When I say he will do the “write” thing, I mean it. He literally wrote the book on ethics in government. It is time we had a champion for the 42nd; please vote Matt Krogh this November.

Devlin Henderson
Bellingham

Letters Policy

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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