Letters to the Editor

Community Help protect the shoreline

All of us on Bainbridge Island depend on healthy marine shorelines and the near-shore environment, whether for bird watching, beachcombing, fishing, shellfish harvesting, or shoreline stability for our homes and other structures. Together we need to come to a common understanding of the importance of a healthy, stable shoreline from an ecological and a human perspective.

The increasing population growth of the Puget Sound region and associated adverse impacts from growth, coupled with a lack of adequate shoreline and near-shore protections all around the Sound, including Bainbridge Island, has resulted in diminishing healthy marine habitat. This combination has in turn contributed to significant declines in the quantity and quality of eel grass beds, kelp beds, forage fish, salmon, shellfish, and marine mammals.

The city of Bainbridge Island is currently embarking on developing regulations that would provide protection to the marine environment all around our Island. Despite the community’s hard work several years ago, the island has lacked appropriate protection for this integral and critical component of “our backyard.” Previous efforts failed to incorporate best available science (BAS) into the regulations; now we have another opportunity to engage in the kind of productive dialogue that can integrate the science with the community’s vision and a realistic, sustainable approach to Bainbridge Island’s future.

We applaud the city for taking on the important work of revising these regulations. We all need to get involved! We strongly believe it is in everyone’s best interest for all of us in this community to get engaged and to work together on this important issue. Because we have a unique “island” home, which includes our marine waters, shorelines, beaches, bluffs and harbors, we all stand to gain by each and every one of us getting better informed and educated and providing our opinions and input to our city government.

The challenge for the city is to make sure that the process adequately considers the best available science, vetted through a scientific peer review process that utilizes the considerable scientific knowledge of islanders, as well as the human factors and needs of the Bainbridge community. The challenge for the Bainbridge Island community is to come to this dialogue with an open mind, and engage in the process with civility, as neighbors, with respect and consideration for one another. It is time that the island community begin to appreciate differences of perspective as opportunities and not threats.

A number of us on the island have recently formed The Bainbridge Alliance for Puget Sound (BAPS), an organization intent on providing educational opportunities for all Islanders on the importance and value of preserving and protecting our shorelines and the marine environment around our Island. We look forward to seeing all of you at the city’s public educational meeting at 7 p.m. April 17 at City Hall.

DAVID SALE, LISA MACCHIO, CARA CRUCKSHANK, BRUCE TAFT and LAURA INGHAM

Bainbridge Island

National

Is President above the law?

From James Madison:

“In war, too, the discretionary power of the President is extended; his influence in dealing out offices and honours and emoluments is multiplied, and all the means of seducing the mind are added to those of subduing the force of the people.

“The same malignant aspect of Republicanism may be traced in the inequality of fortunes and the opportunities of fraud growing out of a state of war, and in the degeneracy of morals and manners engendered by both.

“No nation can preserve its freedoms in the midst of continual warfare.”

From John Yoo (former legal advisor to President George W. Bush):

“There is no law to constrain the President from taking a child and crushing the testicles of a person’s child, in front of a prisoner to make that prisoner talk – I think it would depend upon why the President chose to do that.”

REJENDRA SHIVAPRIYAN

Parfitt Way

Community Events, April 2014

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