Letters to the editor
Highlands TodayRace card?
Published: March 6, 2013
Published: March 6, 2013
The article by Bud Morgan in Saturday's edition was generally well written and researched. Many of the views written by the authors mentioned in the article regarding the failure of our country's leadership to deal with today's issues and not be held accountable I totally agree with.
Why, then, in a completely off-the-wall and unrelated statement does he play the race card relating to the president? He indicates that there are still racists who cannot accept an African-American president who should "catch that riderless train back to slavery and the Civil War or choose to become part of a truly moral America." Nice poetry! Could that be where those riderless Amtrak trains are going?
The implication could be that, if you strongly disagree with the policies and programs of this president and didn't vote for him, you are a racist. Is it not more racist to vote for him only because he is black? Race had absolutely nothing to do with any of the common sense views of the authors mentioned in the article, nor should it. Why, then, does Mr. Morgan feel the need to pontificate on it?
Is it too much to ask the Florida Department of Environmental Protection to actually take responsibility for enforcement of the Clean Water Act in Florida? The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced in November that it will enforce the Clean Water Act and do what Florida hasn't – set specific, enforceable numbers to limit pollution.
The EPA's standards are like easy-to-read speed limit signs. But instead, the Florida Department of Evironmental Protection wants to substitute bureaucratic mumbo-jumbo that allows water to become unsafe before requiring pollution control. So once again, Florida taxpayers will be on the hook to clean up polluted streams and lake in Florida.
The Mosaic Desoto Mine project is just the latest disaster that may soon occur in Florida. One of the most affected tributaries of the Desoto Mine is the large tributary of Peace River – Horse Creek, a stream that contributes to the potable drinking water resource in Charlotte and Desoto counties.
The Southwest Florida Water Management District describes it as being "famous for its scenic beauty and the purity of its water. Wildlife is plentiful and the banks are lined with moss-draped live oaks."
It deserves better protection than allowing the permitting of three proposed phosphate strip mines. Huge, industrialized projects like three phosphate mines obliviously will negatively impact and change the water in Horse Creek, Peace River and Charlotte Harbor Estuary by increasing salinity, dissolved oxygen and total nitrogen/phosphorus.
The Florida DEP, crowded with former mining employees and influenced by mining "political action committees," instead of enforcing mandatory minimum clean water standards, is offering "suggestions" and a rubber stamp approval to the mining company.
We urge our governor and lawmakers to not allow the Florida DEP to circumvent the U.S. Clean Water Act standards.
Tanya Bond, Sara Hollenhorst, Bob Navin, Dot Camaranavin and Pam Sullivan
Friends of Horse Creek