Letter to Seven Days: Unpopular Position

Unpopular Position

It’s a shame that Kathryn Flagg spent so much time making sure that everyone knew James Ehlers isn’t a member of Vermont’s power elite [“Water Warrior,” February 18]. Because it would have been better to hear more about Ehlers’ work to clean up our state’s waterways rather than to learn (over and over again) that “the players” aren’t comfortable with him.

The fact that Ehlers isn’t invited to insider events only proves that he’s doing exactly what he should be doing: making the polluters and their enablers very, very nervous. As they should be, because, with the exception of a steady stream of platitudes, these insiders have been failing miserably when it comes to addressing our critically injured waterways.

Bravo to Ehlers for taking the issue of cleaning up Lake Champlain so seriously that he won’t tolerate the empty rhetoric, meaningless photo ops, or weak-kneed and off-the-mark “solutions.” Gov. Shumlin says Ehlers is off “the reservation.” Well, maybe that’s not such a bad place to be, since those on the reservation have been doing little more than punting on the issue for decades.

Instead of pondering whether Ehlers is liked or popular, how about whether he’s right or wrong? And, while you’re at it, why not report on the track records of those who’ve locked Ehlers out of the popular club? Because it’s been on their watch that the lake has been poisoned, and it has been their policies that have failed.

Michael Colby

Walden

Colby is the executive director of the nonprofit environmental group Food & Water. He is also a member of the Liberty Union Party.

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