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Volume 16, Issue 4 - January 24 - January 30, 2008

Letters to the Editor

We welcome your opinions and letters – with name and address. We will edit when necessary. Include your name, address and phone number for verification. Mail them to Bay Weekly, P.O. Box 358, Deale, MD 20751 • E-mail them to [email protected]. or submit your letters on line, click here

Thinking out of the Box on Chesapeake Bay

Dear Bay Weekly:

This letter is in response to Steve Carr’s “Bay Cheer for a New Year” [Vol. xvi, No. 1: Jan 3]. I am extremely pleased Steve wrote this article, and let me tell you why.

I am a Yankee who lives in West River, a.k.a. South County. There seems to be a tremendous amount of respect for farming, livestock and preserving rural areas in South County. In addition, the boating life is vibrant, and sailors and powerboaters alike enjoy the Bay and the wildlife inhabiting the area, hence the reason my family chose the area.

As I began reading Steve Carr’s article, I thought thank goodness someone is enlightening the mood of the Bay. Further into it, I realized this was an ignorant perspective and unfortunately portrays the ideology of some watermen and seafood businesses in my area.

First off, why in the world does Maryland not only keep female crabs but also sell them, and at a discount versus males? Crabs are not asexual crustaceans. Removing females depletes the population and the potential future of the crab population. Isn’t this common sense? I was brought up to believe in unwritten rules, like throwing back female crabs and undersized fish for the good of future generations.

Paraphrasing Steve, “that was with an A+ for rockfish, which recent surveys show to be malnourished and infected with a hideous disease that eats them alive.” Someone please say it ain’t so!

“We need scientists to teach the fish and crabs how to escape from the dead zone.” Okay. Ask them if next semester is too soon.

As I think out of the box: What we need is to build an ugly wall to keep everything out and away from the Bay, like the ones that barrier our highways.

Next, we should dam the Bay at both ends and install filtration devices to contain pesticides and pollutants. Then drain the Bay, suffocate all the cancerous creatures, remove them and refill it with new brackish water and creatures.

Then, Maryland should set up a frequent flyer program with Brazil to send our commercial fisherman there to fish the Guanabara Bay and sell their cancerous creatures back to us as we obviously enjoy a freshly grilled, malnourished diseased fish.

Last, oysters: A few good Chesapeake Bay lovers gathered some money and momentum to try and reintroduce a bivalve mollusk to their native Bay (Bravo! by the way), and there are actually watermen who are fishing for them and restaurants that are accepting their bounty. That’s similar to farmer’s bringing back good-old DDT as a pesticide and us consciously purchasing their fruits and veggies — carelessly ignoring the resurgence of eagles in Maryland.

The simple reality is this: What is needed in Maryland, Amish Pennsylvania and Virginia to restore this Bay is accountability and honor. Frankly, the whole earth could use a stiff dose of this.

I say we pass the buck to God, Santa, Congress and scientists to do their part in Bay restoration. Or we could just ask the person we see in the mirror if he or she’s done anything today to help Chesapeake Bay for tomorrow.

–Mike Mulhern, West River

Bay Weekly’s Down-Home, Grass-Roots Appeal

Dear Bay Weekly:

Thanks for the acknowledgments of my work in your recent issues of Bay Weekly [Way Downstream: Vol. xvi, No 1: Jan 3]. I continue to enjoy the down-home grass-roots feel of Bay Weekly. I keep thinking of you and your cohorts as the authors of the Button Down Rag on the free shelf at the local Mom and Pops hangout, and I really love being included in that.

–Tom Wisner, Solomons

Continuing the Legend of Marion Warren

Dear Bay Weekly:

Once again, a heartfelt thank you for Carrie Madren’s great piece on our DVD Chesapeake: The Work of Marion Warren [Vol. xv, No 51: Dec. 20]. We’re getting phone calls and orders. You get it right every time. Carrie’s a really good writer.

–Joanie Surette, West River

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