Letters to the Editor

The Drumheller Mail - - NEWS -

events and knowl­edge of the lo­cal re­sources. When the need arises, the process is lo­cally ac­ti­vated and fur­ther lev­els are trig­gered as the sit­u­a­tion in­di­cates. If the process isn’t fol­lowed there will be du­pli­ca­tion, in­ef­fi­ciency and chaos. Leaders must make the best de­ci­sions they can with in­for­ma­tion avail­able at that time. In fu­ture, this event will be ex­am­ined and an­a­lyzed, and the knowl­edge gained will be shared and ap­plied to the next emer­gency re­sponse plan.

The images from Fort McMur­ray are heart­break­ing: a po­lice of­fi­cer with no pro­tec­tive gear di­rect­ing traf­fic amid fall­ing em­bers and thick smoke dur­ing the evac­u­a­tion, fire­fight­ers stretched out on a lawn try­ing to get a lit­tle rest. The fire chief re­duced to tears. These peo­ple have not asked for praise or recog­ni­tion, and they cer­tainly should not have their ef­forts deemed a fail­ure.

I have heard peo­ple com­plain­ing about gov­ern­ment match­ing Red Cross do­na­tions with ‘our’ tax money. This is a long-rec­og­nized in­cen­tive to elicit fi­nan­cial do­na­tions from those who have the means to do so. By all means give to an­other char­ity if you would rather, or give to more than one - there is no limit. How­ever, I can­not fathom how any­one would be­grudge tax dol­lars be­ing used to help our neigh­bours.

I have heard cruel comments about ‘karma’. Again: hurt­ful not help­ful. Think be­fore you speak – some­times it’s okay to be si­lent.

It should be cel­e­brated that 80,000 peo­ple safely ex­ited the city through what must have been ter­ri­fy­ing con­di­tions. I can’t imag­ine. The in­ad­e­quacy of High­way 63 has been ac­knowl­edged for decades, and the evac­u­a­tion bot­tle­neck pro­vided fur­ther ev­i­dence, as does the tragic ac­ci­dent that took the only two lives that were lost.

There is a fine line be­tween sup­port­ing peo­ple through trauma while bear­ing wit­ness to their loss, with­out de­te­ri­o­rat­ing into neg­a­tiv­ity and blame. Now is not the time to lis­ten to un­der-in­formed bystanders who think they could have done a bet­ter job. Now is the time to start help­ing the evac­uees look for­ward, and to pro­vide con­struc­tive sup­port in the long road ahead. Kristina Lau­rid­sen Dear Editor; re: Bad­lands Mo­tor­sports Re­sort sub­mits plans for county ap­proval

How can one list the many ways this pro­posal is just plain wrong? I had writ­ten a long­winded com­ment that at­tempted to do just that. But it re­ally just boils down to the main thrust of the Joni Mitchell song, “Big Yel­low Taxi”. They paved par­adise And put up a park­ing lot With a pink ho­tel, a bou­tique And a swing­ing hot SPOT Don’t it al­ways seem to go That you don’t know what you’ve got ‘Til it’s gone They paved par­adise And put up a park­ing lot They took all the trees And put them in a tree mu­seum Then they charged the peo­ple A dol­lar and a half just to see ‘em Don’t it al­ways seem to go, That you don’t know what you’ve got ‘Til it’s gone They paved par­adise And put up a park­ing lot

No­body needs this. No­body wants this but the de­vel­oper and their en­ti­tled as­so­ci­ates. This is progress? Not if you care at all about the beauty and in­trin­sic worth of what is about to be de­stroyed. This is pro­posal vile and shame­ful. Paul Lassen Dear Editor,

As a kid, (I am in my early six­ties) we used to climb on the hoodoos not real­iz­ing the dam­age that we were do­ing to the area and to the struc­tures.

Of course, NOW we know bet­ter and there are En­vi­ron­men­tal laws and pro­ce­dures in place to pro­tect nat­u­ral sites such as the hoodoos. I won­der why, con­ser­va­tion of nat­u­ral grass and wet­lands are not be­ing taken into higher re­gard and con­sid­er­a­tion for this pro­posed $400 mil­lion re­sort and race­track.

Is this de­vel­op­ment worth the to­tal dis­re­gard for the nat­u­ral habi­tat that is be­ing de­stroyed for­ever? A per­son can drive around our coun­try and see the ar­chae­o­log­i­cal rem­nants of old com­mu­nity race­tracks left over from the 50 and 60s, barely rec­og­niz­able if one doesn’t know that they are there but cer­tainly the land­scape has been changed for­ever.

From a busi­ness perspective, I won­der when a $400 mil­lion project would ac­tu­ally start to make enough money to make this project vi­able and sus­tain­able into the fore­see­able fu­ture.

When this am­bi­tious plan falls through, half com­pleted be­cause of cost over­runs or other un­fore­see­able cir­cum­stances or aban­doned when the cost to run the fa­cil­ity is no longer vi­able, who will be held re­spon­si­ble for the de­struc­tion of the land and the re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion of the land? The loss of this pris­tine val­ley land with its nat­u­ral wet and grass­lands is a loss to all Al­ber­tans not just Knee­hill county res­i­dents. Sin­cerely, De­bra McIsaac

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