Letters to the Editor: July 23, 2020

Letters to the editor.

Stay Engaged


OK, I’ll admit it: I am a little worn down by the world. Obviously, COVID-19 has made life harder, much more for some of us than others for sure, and we each have our own family/life/work challenges to face. But there is more to all this, and for me it’s the backdrop of the constant and relentless assault on truth, science, responsible environmental regulation and the very democratic principles on which this country was founded.

The drip, drip, drip of it all makes me want to turn away and tune out. It’s a natural feeling and settling into the groove of summer sure does feel appealing. But, and this is the rub, that is the desired outcome. A numb, tired and worn-down electorate enables the outrages to continue unchecked. While we have ample evidence that public outrage about proposals to open the coast to development or withdrawal from the Paris Accords or (fill in your greatest outrage here) does little to stop the gutting of real environmental protections, pushing back is essential. Paying attention, taking names and holding leaders accountable is essential. By staying engaged we retain our power, and only by tuning out do we surrender. I am not ready to surrender.

There is an old adage that says “sleep when your enemy sleeps.” These people never sleep so that’s hard, but it’s OK to take a day or weekend here or there to get out and remind ourselves why we love the Cape. The energy that comes from that refreshment of mind, body and soul will get us through the choppy waters ahead. We need you, the Cape needs you, because we need a change and it is up to each one of us to do our part.

Andrew Gottlieb, executive director
Association to Preserve Cape Cod


Many Refuse To Comply


After the holiday weekend and rush to dine and shop here, several young business owners (some single moms) were very disappointed in the poor attitudes of some guests refusing to comply with masks or social distancing health mandates for Chatham.

Dave Ferraresi


History For All To See


Your July 16 article "An Emotional Voyage for Pendleton Survivor's Daughter" by Kat Szmit certainly captured the wide range of emotions that many feel when they see the retired Coast Guard Motor Lifeboat 36500 and remember her brave crew from the Pendleton rescue almost 70 years ago. Your readers should know that The Centers for Culture and History in Orleans or the "CHO" (previously the Orleans Historical Society) is the proud owner and operator of the boat, and is grateful to the many volunteers who have worked tirelessly to fully restore and maintain her since 1981. The CG36500 may be viewed by the public from the Rock Harbor (Orleans) pier throughout the summer and early fall, and at Meetinghouse Pond over the winter. While on-board tours are not possible now due to social-distancing guidelines, volunteers may be at the pier and information/souvenir shed on weekends and are happy to answer questions and recount the boat's amazing history.

Jay Stradal, CHO board chair 


Heartbroken Over Civility Loss


As hard as it is for me to believe, at about 2 a.m. early this morning, someone stopped in front of our home, jumped out of their car, and stole the "Biden for President" sign which my wife and I had placed on our property.  

We are old enough and smart enough to understand and appreciate that what makes our nation great and strong is our freedom to support whom we wish, and express that support without concern that vandals will steal from us to try and silence us.  Even more disappointingly, this is the second time the sign had been impacted. The first time, about a week ago, it was vandalized but not stolen. This time, the parties who took the signage were not satisfied with just defacing it.  They stole it and laughed as they drove away.

Granted, I am now a senior citizen and so perhaps more idealistic and cynical than others, but I am staggered by the thought that here on Cape Cod, we have people who feel compelled to make their point known in this manner.  I am heartbroken by the loss of the basic civility that was the American standard, and worried what is becoming of our beloved Cape.

Brian Weiner


West Chatham Needs Crosswalk


This time of year, I think we all should thank a town worker on the front lines. Downtown always looks great. Even the newly painted crosswalks let us all know it’s summer.

As the newly self-appointed, self-elected (just now) president of the West Chatham Business Association, I was wondering if we could order up a couple crosswalk for us way over here? Over the last week, I have witnessed a car stop for a pedestrian, only to have someone try to pass using the center lane, not seeing any road markings indicating a crosswalk.

We fully understand we are not downtown, but our walkers and cyclists deserve the same safety as the shoppers downtown. We also are aware this road project will probably wrap up in 2026 ( maybe) but this might want to be put on a priority list.
PS: I immediately resign as the newly-elected, self-appointed president of the West Chatham Business Association!

Walter Kane


Ducks No Longer In Window


For more than 40 years, I have been watching the myriad of ducks plying the Oyster River from my front window. I saw them every day; multiple times a day. We are practically on a first name basis. For a year now, I have not seen one duck. Where have they gone, and why?

Rosallie Moretti
West Chatham


Questions Cyr COVID-19 Statement


Senator Julian Cyr has chosen to fan the flames of racism on Cape Cod by making irresponsible and unsubstantiated claims that Black residents are being sickened and killed by COVID-19 in disproportionate numbers due to systemic racism. Systemic racism is the left’s catch-all for everything they don’t like and is hard to rebut since it is not backed by any facts. However, the data on COVID-19 sickness and deaths is available for Massachusetts as a whole. The COVID-19 dashboard for Massachusetts shows that Black residents comprise 8 percent of COVID-19 deaths. The percent Black residents in the population is in the range of 7.5 to 9 percent depending on the source. Therefore there is no significant bias toward Black people in the deaths from COVID-19 in Massachusetts.

Senator Cyr has stated that Black residents on Cape Cod are far more likely to sicken and die from the virus. He is comparing the statewide rate of 8 percent Black deaths to the 3.5 percent Black population on Cape Cod. However, that is comparing apples to oranges. The Black population is obviously not evenly distributed throughout the state, so state-wide data cannot be applied to a particular locale, such as Cape Cod. We have no data on Black deaths from COVID-19 on Cape Cod. In fact, an email I received from Barnstable County Health dated July 11, confirms that the county “does not have access to” that data. Senator Cyr’s statement is not factual and can only hurt race relations in his district.

Paula Miller

Editor's note: The data Senator Cyr, and our story last week, referred to was from the New York Times, which found that with 49 percent of cases reporting race or ethnicity, Barnstable County had 611 white people and 62 black people test positive for COVID-19. The data can be accessed here: www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/07/05/us/coronavirus-latinos-african-americans-cdc-data.html.