Letters to the editor for May 3, 2013

By Union Democrat staff May 03, 2013 04:00 pm

In disapproval of Saunders column

To the Editor: 

I found it sadly ironic that in the same week that you carried a small feature in American Profile on Capt. Charles Moore, author of “Plastic Ocean,” you also had a column by Debra J. Saunders in which she mocks the decreased use of plastic bags, and makes it a political platform to deride California politicians and Democrats in particular.

Capt. Moore is the founder of the Algalita Marine Research Institute in Long Beach and began noticing in 1997 that even in the remotest parts of the Ocean, he would see floating plastic refuse. He is credited with discovering the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, the world’s largest mass of floating trash. This mass just keeps getting larger and ocean critters perceive it as food. Thirty-five percent of the fish they catch have plastic in their  bellies that then begins its way up the food chain to us. This isn’t just about “litter.”

I’ve written about Ms. Saunders lack of credibility before. My favorite column of hers was just before the financial collapse of 2008. She didn’t merely disagree with anyone who thought our economy was less than stable, she ridiculed them. Now she takes a serious and growing environmental threat and reduces it to petty politicians harassing middle class wage earners about litter. Her sneering tone suggests she knows little of substance about the subject, and as I’ve said before, I feel The Union Democrat cheapens itself by including her amongst its columnists. 

Thoughtful commentary from any viewpoint is appreciated. Jeering character attacks and half-truths are not.

Stefani Reichle

Jamestown