Get Your Facts Straight, and Say "No" to Dumping While You're at It

Maybe dump your printing press in the Sound, too?

DEAR EDITOR: The article penned by Keegan Hamilton and passed off as "Maritime News" ["Dead in the Water," April 18] was one long, unbelievable editorial for dumping maritime trash into Puget Sound. Unbelievable in its lopsided reporting, and unbelievable as an object lesson on how much humans have to learn about respectful relationships with natural systems.

Contrary to the thrust of this "news article," the idea that we should suddenly create little aquarium scenes underwater—for the titillation of divers who otherwise find diving too boring—by submerging our waste ships into the marine environment is really not such a wonderful idea. Nature is not our playpen, nor is it our garbage bin. Shall we next throw trains, automobiles, bridges into Puget Sound? How about the viaduct? How about the printing presses of Seattle Weekly? Shall we also flood and fertilize the world's great deserts so we can make these natural monuments of serenity more biodiverse? Shall we erect giant concrete trees in the open plains to provide roosting areas for passing birds?

How about restoring the habitat we have already destroyed for no good reason? If the motivation is really to create fish habitat in Puget Sound, then sports divers should work on projects like the dismantling of the Elwha Dam. The Elwha River was once teeming bank-to-bank with salmon. Now a dam sits on it for no other reason than the entertainment of another sports interest group—lake boaters. But I suppose salmon aren't really cool enough to watch underwater. Not as cool as piles of old junk.

The author cites the Navy study that concluded little harm would come from the PCBs in the marine environment, but failed to mention that the Navy produced this study because they needed to find a cheap way to dispose of hundreds of PCB-contaminated vessels in the so-called "ghost fleet" now sitting stockpiled around the country. You see, removing PCBs from these ships costs money, lots of money. While the government used to export these to the breaking yards of India and Bangladesh, public opposition has foreclosed this dumping ground. So now they are looking for new dumping grounds via "artificial reefs." Surprising, wasn't it, that the study the Navy commissioned suddenly discovered that sunken PCBs were not really such a problem? Despite the fact that they are well known to be a persistent marine pollutant that is highly toxic and known to build up in the marine food chain. And do you know what animals reside at the top of the food chain and are most susceptible to the bio-concentration of toxic PCBs? Orca whales and human beings. How about we improve the habitat of these two very entertaining species—by not poisoning them!Jim Puckett

Earth Economics


Appelo lacks judgment

DEAR EDITOR: While I concur with Tim Appelo ["The Suns of August," April 18] that August Wilson is a major playwright and that his contribution to American theater was memorable, to say that his death was a "greater loss than the deaths of Arthur Miller, Eugene O'Neill, or Tennessee Williams" is indicative of a short-sightedness that would seem to disqualify the author from being a critic at all. Ridiculous!Kenneth Holditch, Ph.D.

New Orleans, LA

Cold shoulder?

DEAR LOUSY EDITOR: I cannot believe you are cutting Dategirl out in favor of Uptight Seattleite and ¡Ask a Mexican! It was the one mainstream, gushy, funny thing about the Weekly. I appreciated the fact that Judy McGuire wasn't trying pathetically hard to be cutting-edge, because her honesty doesn't have to be as abrasive as you-know-who's since it is real! She is an expert at just being herself, unlike the rest of your paper these days. I don't know whose idea it was to leave her out of the printed version, but I think it is a very bad decision.

Fix it. Fast!Nicole DeLaittre


The lousy editor responds: Rest assured, we have not "cut out" Dategirl. It's just that every once in a while you need some space, you know? Especially in the classified ads section when we're having a good week. But Judy will be back in her accustomed spot next week, and most weeks thereafter.

No, you are the first!

DEAR EDITOR: I'm guessing I'm not the first person to point out the one error with your otherwise fine article ["Lame Dunks," April 11], but 1918 would be the first year for a major sports championship in Seattle [not the Sonics in 1979]. The Seattle Metropolitans won the Stanley Cup (the first American team to do so) and were well into a defense of the greatest trophy in sports in 1919 when the influenza outbreak in WWI's wake caused the series to be canceled.

Otherwise, it was a great article.Mike Foley


The editor responds: Come on, Mike! Get your facts straight! Our head of editorial operations, Andrea, informs us that the Metropolitans won in 1917, not 1918. So they weren't defending their title in 1919 at all. Geez.

Seely = yuck

DEAR EDITOR: Was Mike Seely's Bottomfeeder column on Roslyn's Village Pizza ["Crust, Honey," April 11] supposed to be a review? I couldn't tell—there was essentially no information about the food or the restaurant. The article was completely incoherent, babbling about all manner of things, from Blanchet High School cross-country to spring break parties...just not about food.

Mike, if you have nothing to say about the food, at least try to be a bit witty or funny. Your article was boring and just plain annoying.Patrick Mann


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