It’s not easy to get our arms around the situation within our Washington State Parks system.
I wanted to thank all those who attended my mother Pat Goff’s memorial service at the BISC last Sunday. It was very nice to see everyone.
Editor, Congratulations to all the hard working Langley Main Street Association volunteers who made Frick Lane into a delightful walkway through Langley’s past. What was an overgrown and ill-lit alley is now a pleasant and informative thoroughfare. The reader boards chronicle the history of our community (check out the all-female city government of 1920) and the plantings and new lighting create a safe and attractive space.
Editor, I had a problem this week in dealing with Medicare. It’s a huge national agency. Gamely, I phoned the 1-800 number. The voicemail system wanted first my state and then my zip code. Then it connected me to Senior Services of Island County, in Bayview. I spoke briefly with Director Lynae Slinden, who promised to have someone phone me before noon.
Editor, I read with shock and dismay the Earth Day edition of The Record, describing the browning and withering of our once green island. Possession Point Park has been kidnapped by pirates. Choochokam is drowning in litter and rubbish. Whidbey Environmental Action Network whines about clear cuts. An ancient seer named POGO proclaimed, “We have met the enemy and he is us.” We must act quickly on “island time,” with lots of advance notification.
Editor, I am grateful for Helen Price Johnson’s attention and responsibility for the interests of all who value the Island County Fair (The Record, April 16). Our other two Island County commissioners appear more than ready to wash their hands of this county albatross, partly because most benefits accrue to South Whidbey. But the mere eagerness of the Port of South Whidbey commissioners to take ownership of the property assures nothing for the fair’s future.
Editor, Imagine this: A clear cut a quarter mile deep, running from Langley all the way to Bayview. That’s how large a clear cut in the Trillium Woods was before the Whidbey Environmental Action Network (WEAN) led a public outcry against the logging that ultimately led to a 40-acre limit on clear cuts on Whidbey and other Puget Sound islands. In spite of this, regulations are still remarkably lax for loggers on Whidbey. If landowners declare that their land is to be used only for forestry, they can avoid many of the pesky environmental regulations that the rest of us face.
Editor, As we return from the Monterey Next Generation Jazz Festival, I am left with a great sense of pride for my students and our very special community here on South Whidbey. Although we did not place in the top three bands within the given scoring matrix, we clearly set the standard for nuanced and soulful performance. As the first performers of the contest, we knew we needed to make a lasting impression, but we never expected such a favorable response.
Editor, Thank you to all who made last week’s South Whidbey High School Jazz Band trip to Monterey Next Generation Jazz Festival possible. As a parent of a band member (and chaperone along for the ride), I am deeply grateful to all in the Whidbey Island community (and beyond) who contributed to the journey for this 18-member group of students and their fearless leader and teacher extraordinaire, Chris Harshman. Your contributions supported us all the way there and back.
Editor, On behalf of Saratoga Orchestra of Whidbey Island, we extend a warm “thank you” to the supporters of our recent fundraising gala, Soirée de Printemps — A Taste of the French Quarter, held on April 9 at Freeland Hall. We are pleased to report that this year’s gala was our most successful to date and our dollar-for-dollar challenge from Island Thrift was more than matched. Funds raised during the evening will allow us to expand the number of concerts and outreach events in all island neighborhoods, continue underwriting complimentary student admissions, and bring quality music to our island community.
Editor, Everything is new now. The hottest year on record was 2014, that is until 2015. January was the warmest month yet until February. This has been by far the wettest winter on record for our region following our driest, most forest fired summer ever. Tornadoes, hail here? The eastern and southern USA has been slammed by extreme weather events all year. Meanwhile, the FBI and several state attorneys general are investigating Exxon for their role in the global warming cover up (they knew 40 years ago it would be a problem).
Editor, Slow Food Whidbey Island thoroughly enjoyed the article that was on the Living Page of your Wednesday, April 13 edition of The Record, although we were surprised since we didn’t know it was going to be published. I’d like to add a little more information to supplement the article. The event will be held on Tuesday, April 19 from 5:30 to 8:30 at Deer Lagoon Grange in Bayview.
Editor, The Washington Policy Center claims tax exempt status on the basis of it being a non-partisan entity. On April 13, 2016, Todd Meyers, from its communications department, sent an email in the name of, and on behalf of the Washington Policy Center, that is anything but non-partisan. His email addressing billboards warning that unregulated agriculture is putting the state’s waterways at risk is nothing more than a partisan rant against what he calls “Seattle environmentalists [who] are all hat and no cattle.”
Editor, In regard to Robert Boehm’s viewpoint concerning orthopedics, “A reputation is earned, not made with a new name” in the April 9 edition of The Record, I recently went to the South Whidbey Clinic for shoulder pain, a branch of WhidbeyHealth. I was also referred to an orthopedic surgeon attached to the hospital. I could not get an appointment sooner than two months. I am quite physical, living on a farm, dealing with a fair amount of pain, for what appears is going to be an extended period of time.
Editor, Kudos to the county for finally involving the stakeholders of the urban growth area — the residents and property owners — in talking about the future. To correct Keith Higman, interim director of Island County planning, stakeholders do not constitute the city planner and occasional elected officials at the county comprehensive plan meetings.
Editor, I read with interest Mr. Kiser’s letter, “Democrats revealed their ignorance with Sanders,” in the Wednesday edition of The Record. His attitude toward Sen. Bernie Sanders is not, however, what concerns me. What concerns me is his failure to understand that elements of socialism are built into our constitution and are reflected by several laws that many of us benefit from. Note that I said elements of socialism. I receive Social Security and benefits from Medicare. Both of these are government programs paid for by current wage earners. Some view social Security as a savings account. It’s not.
Editor, Mr. Ed Hickey’s letter in the March 30 edition of The Record, “Trump isn’t perfect, but he deserves a fair chance,” took my breath away. It was as if the gentleman had just returned from Mars. At least that would explain why he seems not to know that Mr. Trump has announced that his top advisor on foreign affairs would be… Mr. Trump. “I talk to myself,” Mr. Trump told a reporter in explanation.
Editor, We enjoyed your front page article, “Langley daughter to perform… ,”, but Marley’s teacher said, “There seems to be something in the water up in Langley.” Though we appreciate Langley water (Mira Yamamoto lives in Clinton) I want to give credit to the Suzuki method for starting students young, and for involving parents early on.
Editor, Kudos to Whidbey News Group staffers Jessie Stensland, Michelle Beahm, and South Whidbey Record’s Justin Burnett for shedding light on recent activities at Whidbey General Hospital. The imminent changeover of CEOs at our public hospital provides a historic opportunity to reverse a decade-long slide and return the place to being a “patients first” facility. This simply won’t happen unless our community papers are relentless in demanding that the hospital board members cease their practices of non-transparency, cover-ups and special interest dealings.
To the editor: Steve Burr has it right on: The game IS rigged. The question then becomes, what should we do?