To the editor:
For decades, individuals and groups of concerned scientists and environmental and civic activists have been ringing the alarm about the use and promotion of nuclear energy. They have not only voiced their concerns but have confirmed their findings. They have stated that nuclear regulators were bedfellows with industry, dating back to the infancy of the Atomic Energy Commission. They said that nuclear power was neither safe, clean, green, nor inexpensive.
Bring it closer to home. It was reported that the G.E. Mark 1 BWR (boiling-water reactor) had inherent design flaws (the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station was built with the Mark 1) and that Pilgrim had the distinction of being the worst-run nuclear power plant in the nation.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) would not even follow its own recommendations, as stated in “Lessons Learned from Fukushima,” a study commissioned by the NRC. There have been a number of studies published regarding the health and economic impact of living within the reach of the Pilgrim reactor.
Now, the talk of millions of gallons of radioactive water being released into Cape Cod Bay is finally shaking the public’s tree? [“Fishing Community Raises Alarm on Radioactive Water,” Dec. 30, page A5].
Oh, let it be true!
Old Provincetown Is Gone
To the editor:
I’m not sure if Dame Blanche’s “Future Shock” essay [“Rue Commerciale,” Dec. 16, page A2] is serious or satire, but it is certainly fantasy! In the not-too-distant future, Provincetown will be under water, with the Pilgrim Monument, the cemeteries, and the old dump the last visible remains left of the town.
I find this piece of wit disturbing and offensive, considering the condition Provincetown is in. It has taken Provincetown 50 or 60 years to kill itself. The condo business has destroyed what was once a cosmopolitan town full of multicultural residents who owned single-family homes and worked in local family-owned businesses.
It is gone forever. You can’t buy a closet for less than half a million dollars, and a parking space costs $45,000. The worst is that no worker can afford to buy, rent, or live there. There used to be many service people who lived in town. Now if you need a painter, you almost have to look up Cape for one.
There are people who love Provincetown just the way it is and would like to make it even more exclusive. But you still have to have a work force. This is too serious an issue to make fun of.
Judith B. Saffron
Mt. Desert Island, Maine
The Future Replies
To the editor:
Please direct this to your correspondent John Shuman [“Happy New Year 2522,” Dec. 30, page A3]:
Dear John Shuman: Thank you for your oddly formatted physical (I think you would call it “text”?) message. I must say you seem very “judgy.”
You write: “We think we are so smart with our internet, satellites, drones, and streams. I hope you don’t have digital connections in your brains. I want to think that humanity won’t be sacrificed to robotics.”
What exactly is your problem with world consciousness?
We discovered that “instinct” developed for a creature fighting for survival on the savannahs was perhaps not the best response for a species in the midst of an evolutionary change — one caused by your destroying our physical world. The only hope was to make thinking more important than bidets or bathroom paper shortages.
Shakespeare? Of course, we still love Shakespeare, Morrison, Atwood, Herbert, Bolano, and so many others after your time. Have you read Amazon Bezos? Faceberg Zuck? Great storytellers.
The kids are still pissed off, if that makes you feel better.
Yours from the future,
Elon Bezos Zuckerberg the 15th
New York City and Wellfleet)
To Those Who Never Gave Up
To the editor:
Last week’s editorial by Saskia Maxwell Keller [“Looking Through Opera Glasses”] has inspired me to write a year-end thank-you note.
On behalf of those who, for one reason or another, have been unable to enjoy in-person activities, I congratulate all those organizations and volunteers who have brought us entertainment in new and innovative ways. So many more outdoor activities have been launched and other programs tweaked in ways we might not have imagined possible.
During these difficult times, the Independent coming to my breakfast table each week broadens my horizons, keeps me informed, and even makes me smile. The tireless volunteers at WOMR/WFMR, many of whom stretched their brains to bring us programming from newly fashioned home studios, deserve kudos.
In 2020 and 2021 we learned to push past the status quo (is there one anymore?), to be inquisitive and open to new ways of communicating.
January is a time to welcome new aspects of life. It is also a time to assess what is valuable now and keep that alive in the New Year. I am grateful to those who never gave up on the shared experience and found ways to keep us anchored in community.