Letters to the Editor -- December 04, 2003

Published on Thu, Dec 4, 2003
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Letters to the Editor

Picture the plant
The Editor:

Oh how nice - a sewage treatment plant on Marine Drive. Can�t you picture it? The families with their children playing on the whale sculptures to the accompaniment of the high pitched whine of sewage transfer pumps and the lovely aroma of fermenting feces. Maybe the kids can climb on the surrounding scenic chain link fence (with the crowning glory of razor wire designed to keep out sewage plant terrorists).
If they are lucky, they will maybe see a rat or two swim across the brown waters of the holding ponds. And, just imagine the lovely aroma of gun powder and sewage during the Fourth of July celebration, or the lovely scent of sewer plant perfume drifting across the vacated harbor during Dance on the Dockside. In the summer, during the warm afternoon and evening hours, the air rises from the land, the sea breezes flow gently in toward town, across the �sparkling waters� carrying the smell of Blaine�s very own into the streets, across the neighborhoods and city hall.
Let us not forget the fantastic views of this facility from the new boardwalk. Why, I�ll bet the people of Blaine will spend hours walking back and forth admiring the scene of this stupendous structure! Yes, the possibilities to enjoy the Marine Drive sewage lagoon are practically endless, unless they are spoiled by some more sane solutions, like putting it at the end of the almost never used airport.
A sewer plant on Marine Drive, what a grand idea; almost as good as the one a couple of years ago where they wanted to build a new visitor�s center on top of a new stink plant. Perhaps an addition to the fine new signs for Blaine is in order. Welcome to Blaine - Smell our Crap!
Nick Bartlett
Blaine Harbor

Thanks for support
The Editor:

I would like to express my thanks to the voters in Blaine who have allowed me to sit on city council for another four years. Representing them has been a pleasure and I welcome the opportunity to do so for another term.
As anyone who has been following the excellent reporting in The Northern Light will know, the issues we were dealing with before the election continue to be the issues today. We are still struggling with development on the spit and what to do about our sewage problem. The boardwalk is still progressing, although it is the sort of progress that does not yet show from the street. The �Greenbook� project - the streamlining of Blaine�s municipal codes that affect construction and development - will soon begin its fifth year, and I think the effort has had positive effects. Streets, the airport, and parks continue to be sources of controversy that sometimes make the paper and arouse public interest; but at all times are issues with which council must grapple. It is a stimulating arena and I am delighted to be in it.
Ken Ely,
DC Blaine City Council, Ward 2
Blaine

Pointing blame
The Editor:

I recently read letters to the editor in the past few weeks, and have been amazed at how quickly residents are to point blame at the school and administrators. I am not commenting on the two families that wrote letters in particular, since I am not aware of their situation, but I know there is a societal problem with families, not just schools.
How quick are we to shift any responsibility from families? How can teachers be expected to correct problems when they receive no reinforcement from home? With all the rules and expectations placed on them, it is amazing they are even allowed to speak to students. I am a proud graduate of the Blaine school system and have succeeded and progressed through university, in part because of the concern and care of teachers and administrators at the Blaine school district. At schools I attended previous to Blaine, I was considered below par and somewhat ignored by the teachers. When I attended Blaine, I was encouraged to succeed and felt the confidence that teachers had in me. This completely changed my attitude and my self confidence. I could now see myself succeed and was encouraged to do so.
Why is it that a student automatically had problems because of their ethnicity? I go to school now with thousands of Polynesians, and they are treated just as everyone else.
Thanks goes to teachers such as Andy Harmening, John Liebert, Jim Jorgensen, Dave Fakkema, Neil Nix and Terry Thornton. I�m sure there are new teachers striving just as hard to teach our youth. For what they are paid, it is amazing we have such talented and dedicated people in their field.
I am not commenting on these families in particular, because a parent�s job is the most difficult in the world, but we should start trying to help families and place less of this responsibility on schools.
Matt Hargreaves
Provo, Utah

Gratitude and goodbyes
The Editor:

This is a letter of gratitude and goodbyes. After 16 years in Washington state with 12 spent here in Blaine, I am going to be relocating to Wisconsin. I am venturing out into a new life and a fresh start leaving behind very fond memories and many friends and acquaintances. I leave behind many people that have helped me along the way.
I want to take this time to thank the Blaine school district for being such an incredible school, the primary school for being my second family and the bus garage for welcoming me in like one of their own. For those of you that know me, you know what I have gone through to get to this point in my life, and for those of you that don�t, just know it has been a huge journey. I want to thank the Blaine Family Service Center for all of their support and help (parent support, school supplies, Thanksgiving dinners, Christmas presents etc.) as I put myself through college while raising two boys. I want to thank the Boys and Girls club for helping out as a kind watchful eye with my boys and always being there with financial support (scholarships) when my boys wanted to play sports.
As I venture out into unknown territory I will always know that Blaine and its community will be here and be a part of my fondest memories. There are too many people to personally thank, but I hope that each one of you, who helped me grow and become the person that I am today, know that it is because of you, and your guidance, support and understanding that I have truly succeeded and reached so many personal goals. We will miss you, and will never forget all that this community has meant to us.
Blaine will always be a part of who we are. Thank you and goodbye to all our friends.
Cassandra, Brandon, and Cass McKay
Blaine

CAP project a success
The Editor:

The Community Assistance Program (CAP) Thanksgiving basket project was a tremendous success. There were 148 baskets, containing the makings of a full Thanksgiving dinner, that were given out to needy families with children. Only two were unclaimed and those went to the Blaine Food Bank on Friday. Families in Blaine, Birch Bay, Custer and Point Roberts received the dinners on Wednesday afternoon in time to prepare complete turkey dinners for Thursday.
It all wouldn�t have happened without the tremendous support of this wonderful community. Hundreds of people gave donations. Too many to mention, but a few should be listed. Brad and Diane O�Neill paid for all 150 turkeys, Edaleen�s Dairy gave 150 gallons of milk, Bedington Potato Warehouse gave the potatoes, the Sons of the American Legion paid for the cranberry sauce, our firefighters gave substantially as did Windermere Real Estate/Whatcom. The list should go on and on for many gave very generously to help our community.
And then there were the home baked pies. We needed 150, we got 240! Many of the larger families got two pies. Thanks to the individuals and to the awesome churches who produced so many. Some were still warm when we handed them out. (That pie making generosity even got a certain father off a limb he�d climbed out on.)
Next, there were the volunteers from our community who put it all together Tuesday afternoon and Wednesday. What a wonderful group of people! Children helped; the young men from the high school carried boxes for us. So many dropped by and worked for an hour or two. It was light work with so many helping hands.
Finally there are some special thanks. First to Mike Johnson, manager of Cost Cutter who went way beyond the terms �helpful� and �supportive.� Mike came through for us every time the going got tough. He really made it all come together. He is a special man with a big heart. Next, to Lauri Waslohn and Chris Summerville who, with their knowledge from doing it last year, were key to creating and running the program this year. Without them, it wouldn�t have happened. I shouldn�t forget Lynne Chapman and Kathy Stauffer either, they worked long and hard to make this year�s program a success. And last but not least my thanks to Kristen Engerman who designed and made the artistic displays for the collection sites all over town. Thanks so much to all of you and to those many, too numerous to list, who helped.
Because of your giving hearts and helping hands, over 400 children and 250 adults had a reason to be thankful last Thursday. Bless you all.
Brent Brentnall
Director, Community Assistance Program
Blaine

Agree with coverage
The Editor
:
I agree 100 percent with Angela Hicks� letter regarding the football teams. I also heard the eighth grade team were league champs, but have seen no coverage of them.
Our family went to several of the varsity games and watched those young men play their hearts out. We saw incredible effort, determination and perseverance. However badly we wanted a win for their sake, I know the team wanted it even more. I think the team exhibited good sportsmanship, perseverance and determination. I don�t know about you, but those are qualities I am trying to instill in my own children. Shame on any adult in this community who considers these qualities in our young men any less worthy than a winning score on a scoreboard.
Team, thanks for the season and the lesson. Go get �em next year.
Mary Kay Phelps
Blaine

(Editor�s Note: The Northern Light, dependent on space, usually covers varsity sports. Coverage of special events at other levels is sometimes included.)

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 should be limited to 10 names. 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.

Please send your letter to:
225 Marine Drive, Blaine, WA 98230 or fax 360/332-2777.
E-mail:editor@thenorthernlight.com

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.

Please email letters to letters@thenorthernlight.com