Why do the people of Whidbey Island allow an ambitious, self-promoting politician and dodgy new arrivals to define and mischaracterize their island?
A quick trip to the internet does not reveal scientists or experts or professional environmentalists standing on stage with the attorney general. None.
The internet does reveal news coverage about one individual who purchased property near OLF Coupeville, sight unseen — Herald.net, Sept. 3, 2008. It also shows a restraining order against an activist president who signed a jet noise disclosure form but did not like this to be publicly revealed, Whidbey News-Times, June 25.
There is even a well-to-do, political donor-activist-philanthropist.
Two others appear to be the same people from a previous failed lawsuit against the Navy. That case had the same health alarms as the current suit. The ruling stated, “many of these (activists) moved to the area surrounding the OLF Coupeville after the area had been zoned for the high intensity noise or even after the EA-18G aircraft began flying there.”
I am a little old lady from Great Britain. The Royal Navy built the first modern aircraft carriers. They also invented the steam catapult and angled decks.
The Brits understand the need for strange Navys, realistic training and strong community support.
All naval operations are a hazardous business. Few countries can do it well. Our U.S. Navy makes it look easy. Whidbey and Coupeville, plus Bremerton and Bangor, are national assets in this respect. They need our support.
Here on the Peninsula, we have some anti- Navy activists too. They don’t define us. Like Whidbey, the Navy has a very long history here. Plus, like Whidbey, the Navy is a leader in environmental stewardship. The anti-Navy folks don’t compare.
From my long experience, where moderates and majorities stay silent, the fringe will fill in. This seems to apply at Whidbey.
Whidbey is a wonderful place. It does not resemble what I heard in the recent AG press conference nor what I have seen in news coverage during the last few years.
You have a great air station with thoroughly brilliant Navy personnel. You also have many first-rate community organizations and businesses which have been around far longer than the people described above or even the AG himself. Yet, it is the people with the AG who call themselves your community and speak for Whidbey.
The real people and organizations of Whidbey need to speak up for your island and your Navy.