Letters to the Editor

Letter to the Editor: The gift is knowing Sandy Shores well

For two and a half years, I had the privilege of living in Sandy Shores, the neighborhood a quarter mile south of the Glacier mine site. Every day there I counted as a gift.

I was not an “owner,” as Thomas Anderson describes himself in his Beachcomber letter of Jan. 7. I owned no more than the experience of living among plentiful bird species, visits from orcas, huge sea lions plowing their way south like variations on swimming labrador retrievers, river otters, a mammoth mountain, moonrises unmatched anywhere and an abundant madrona forest.

But I don’t neeed to “own” something to know what needs our stewardship in this world, and I believe readers should know just how much skin Thomas Anderson has in the game. What he owns is a small cottage that he and his family visit a few times a year for holiday gatherings. None of the extended family members who use the cottage call it a primary residence.

I wonder if Mr. Anderson would be so “thankful that Glacier is finally being allowed to exercise their rights” if he knew he’d be living close to a 12-hour-a-day barging operation, as his neighbors there will be.

And since when do the “rules of a civilized society,” as he refers to in his letter, include the right to destroy an aquatic reserve for yet more obscenely large amounts of money to go to more fat cat corporations that have bought off the agencies supposedly overseeing them? What is “civilized” is knowing and seeing what surrounds you where you reside, especially that which is not human-made.

I wonder how many bird species Thomas Anderson can name in the Sandy Shores area or whether he was around often enough to ever see orcas swim 100 yards off his bulkhead, so close that you can hear them breathe. Once you’ve heard that, it’s hard to discount them — they sound so much like you and me.

— Brenda Howald

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