Letters to the Editor

Thu, 03/25/2021 - 5:00pm

Point, counterpoint

To the Editor,

Mr. Douglas Gasner is absolutely correct. Approximately 2,500 years before Hemingway, the writer of Ecclesiastes (in the Jewish Scriptures and the Christian Old Testament) wrote: “One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh...the sun also ariseth, and sun goeth down, and hasteth to the place where he arose.” 1:4 and 1:5 (King James version). One may sum up the writer’s message as: it takes divine energy to make progress in life. Actually, I am thrilled to know that Hemingway knew at least one bible verse, and specifically, one more than me!

Tony Pappas
Lakeside Drive


What has changed?

To the Editor,

Champlin’s Marina Application was denied for good reasons in 2006 and again in 2011. What has changed?

Readers of The Block Island Times know that the 2003 Champlin’s application for a significant marina expansion - 2990 linear feet of extended pier and 775 feet of floating docks comprising four acres of the Great Salt Pond - was denied, and for good reasons! They included:

• The expansion would add congestion to an already congested area in the Pond.
• The expansion would impact Town Mooring Field “E”, eliminating between 20 and 40 Town Moorings.
• Champlin’s existing marina configuration is inefficient. This could be corrected by adding many more slips, with no expansion into the Pond.
• Since the existing marina was only fully occupied four weekends a year, a large expansion was not justified.
• The increase did not meet the established criteria for marina expansion in the Coastal Resources Management Plan, specifically with regard to fin and shell fishing, public trust land taking, navigation impacts, scenic impact, geologic conditions, and impact on other users of the Pond, especially the Town mooring field “E”.

So looking back, why would the CRMC now decide to re-negotiate with Champlin’s, especially behind closed doors? Why would CRMC now grant approval for a new marina expansion without addressing any of the above reasons they denied the original application in the first place? What has changed?

Jean Taber


The eye of one beholder

To the Editor,

As I put pen to paper (yes, I still start first drafts the old-fashioned way), I have just returned from a motor tour around the island. It is afternoon on a late March day, graced with full sun and but a whisper of wind. Trees are still bare, pastures and lawns mowed, century-old stonewalls bespeak an earlier, gentler time. Roads are free of traffic; strollers scarce on trails. All’s well. Peace and tranquility abide.

And yet...and yet...there is a big ugly worm in this pomegranate. It is the grandiose and tasteless architecture that has appeared here in little more than a few decades. One after another, big, empty, pretentiously gabled structures stand out like middle fingers to challenge the island’s simple agrarian landscape. How has it happened? Whence comes this wealth sufficient to build vast second homes where once simple summer cottages were the norm for off-island vacationers? I know there are builders on Block Island who must know better. Yet even when big money is being spent – very big money! - it seems that proportion and good design have been left behind. If one must make a statement, where are our Breuers, our Frank Lloyd Wrights, our Phillip Johnsons?

So much money spent; so much intrusion achieved.

I have no answer. I only know that on Block Island, on one sunny afternoon in late March, 2021, it was disheartening to see.

P.S. Wood
Old Mill Road


Forever grateful

Dear Block Island Community,

It started for Bonny a little over a year-and-a-half ago on July 4, 2019, with a Life Star helicopter flight to Rhode Island Hospital, followed by a critical diagnosis. From there, it was a month of radiation treatments every day, followed by oral chemotherapy and then IV chemotherapy every third week.

Along the way there was a loss of hair, infection after infection, and many IV fluid treatments at the Block Island Medical Center. Bonny fought hard and won many battles, though in the end she lost the war.

I believe that next to her family, her love was the Block Island Rescue Squad, which she served for 31 years. She loved this island and worked proudly in many different positions over her lifetime.

I would like to thank the Block Island community and local businesses, the Mary D. Fund, the Block Island Volunteer Fire and Rescue Squad, the Lions Club and the team at the Block Island Medical Center for all of your love and support through Bonny’s illness. But most of all I would like to thank my family for giving me the strength to fight this fight. We are so fortunate to have each other.

This community has overwhelmed us with all the love and encouragement. We will be forever grateful. Thank you and we love you all.

Gary Ryan
397 Pilot Hill Road