Letters to the Editor | Dec. 2 edition

Islanders write about Vashon Theatre, Critical Race Theory and more.


Support a local treasure

My husband and I attended a movie showing at Vashon Theatre last week after easily purchasing both tickets and concessions online. We were so disheartened to see just a handful of people at the show. Please, Vashonites, support the theater. We are so lucky to have first-run movies here, and if we want the theater to survive, we must go to the movies!

— Pam Hart


Pride goeth before the fall

In listening to the back and forth on “CRT,” I think I’ve discovered another way to frame it. I am not going to define “CRT” because everybody is absolutely sure that their definition is the right one. What opponents of “CRT” seem to be saying is that they don’t want their white children to feel shame for what members of their race did to people of color many times in the past. Let bygones be bygones.

I think the lesson of the past is something much different. The unspeakable crimes committed by Europeans upon non-Europeans since the New World was discovered speak of one thing: pride, and the arrogance, intolerance, and violence that it enables. I just read an article about children’s cartoons of today, which, according to the author, are more like morality plays. One character, an old uncle who had fallen from grace, advises his nephew, “Pride is not the opposite of shame, but its source — humility is the only real antidote for shame.

The reason that the unvarnished truth should be presented to our kids is not to produce shame, but to enable humility. What was done in the past by one group or another is situational, the instance of one group gaining power and advantage over another. Any group in that situation, with the absence of humility, would probably do the same thing. What our children, and our society, need to understand is that humans are capable of doing great harm and we must be constantly vigilant that we don’t resort to our lowest instincts.

— Terry Sullivan


Disagreement with: Don’t Ask, Don’t Know

The “tip” in the Beachcomber editorial is a spy-on-thy-neighbor tattle tale system. The suggestion that anyone not vaxxed should be economically shunned is draconian and unjust and may run counter to protections under the constitution.

The Beachcomber has become an instrument echoing the German Reich: Take down people who aren’t like us. We are not carting away people from the gas chambers. But it all starts with the belief that some are lesser humans.

Nearly one-third of health care workers in the US remain unvaccinated. (Forbes November 18, 2021, Robert Hart, quoting CDC study.) Does that mean that the trained front-line workers who care for us, who are putting their lives on the line every day so that we might live, are uninformed selfish crazies?

Might it mean that they are vaccinated but choose not to disclose it because they believe in defending their and your right to the privacy of your medical information and decisions? Could it mean that they know something that we do not about COVID or the vaccines?

Many of your lawyer-prepared Health Care Power of Attorney documents contain provisions to keep your medical information private.

Let me be clear: I am not against vaccines. I am 75, have co-morbidities, was born with pyloric stenosis, a deadly malformation, suffered from congestive heart failure, melanoma, and basil cell carcinoma, had my gall bladder removed after three bouts of pancreatitis, and plan to live to 126.

There is a legitimate discussion to be had around these issues. The Beachcomber should be a vehicle promoting the discussion not beating the drum for hatred.

Go ahead and ask me if I am vaccinated. I double dare you.

— W M “Luke” Lukoskie


Cyclists and Walkers Beware

I have lived on this beautiful island for around nine years. I don’t own a car, so I ride my bicycle and walk a lot.

Lately, more people are moving here and there seems to be more traffic. Nowadays when riding my bike, I have encountered trucks with large mirrors that stick out on the passenger side, speed past me, and it appears to me that they move over closer to me – almost as though to try to move me into the ditch.

Very recently, a bicyclist was at the two-way intersection of Vashon Highway and 188th. On the west side of the intersection, a vehicle stopped at the same time as the cyclist on the east side did. The cyclist waited, and the vehicle turned north onto the highway. Believing it was then his turn after traffic permitted, the cyclist proceeded north. However, the car directly behind the first car that had already turned, proceeded to turn north also but!…..without stopping, and then yelled at the cyclist to STOP!

This driver did not stop but yelled out that there was no crosswalk at the intersection and then made a sexually inappropriate comment in the manner of, “Are you ….”?

In the past two weeks, I happened to be at two different crosswalks. One had flashing lights warning drivers to slow down but when I got to the middle of the crosswalk, a driver sped by me, waved, and went on. In the other incident, I was halfway across the marked crosswalk when a young woman drove right by me, and I had to move out of her way or get hit.

Islanders, is this the “new” Vashon?

— Odie Hendershot