Editors, Vineyard Gazette:

West Tisbury selectman Richard Knabel’s piece in the Vineyard Gazette entitled Those Who Deny Science Are Unfit to Lead [Vineyard Gazette Sept. 2, 2011] seems to have the support of an environmental law firm (nonprofit) in their recent issue of Earthjustice magazine.

Here’s what Earthjustice president Trip Van Noppen says: “The Environmental Protection Agency [EPA] has an opportunity this month [August] to keep health-damaging air pollution from crashing our summer activities. But only if the agency accepts science over the politicking of industrial polluters.”

Mr. Van Noppen goes on to explain that the EPA was required by law to set limits on the amount of pollution in the air we breathe. He says that President G. W. Bush violated the advice of EPA’s scientists via the Clean Air Act and that President Obama’s EPA agreed to redo it.

Apparently now political pressure has forced the EPA to withhold these benefits from the public.

According to Earthjustice, if the EPA chooses to follow the best scientific advice available, it will establish a health standard that saves up to 12,000 lives every year to say nothing of countless visits to hospitals, cases of aggravated asthma, and a staggering 2.5 million days when people have to miss work or school. Let us hope this administration can curb smog pollution as well as public health.

It seems that we here on the Island are lucky to have advisors like Mr. Knabel to suggest the way to get on the right track.

Heidi Schultz

West Tisbury


Editors, Vineyard Gazette:

At the end of July the Martha’s Vineyard Commission put out its Draft Wind Energy Plan for Dukes County for public comment.

It has taken me a while to get through this 150-page document, but I want to say that it is an extraordinary piece of work. The Wind Energy Task Force and the commission staff, especially Mark London and Bill Veno, did a lot of listening and a lot of research, and it shows. Their conclusions and recommendations will not totally please either wind energy advocates or wind energy skeptics, but they are uniformly thoughtful and defensible.

I have seen a lot of policy plans during my career: this has to be among the very best. My hat is off to the MVC.

Eric Turkington



Editors, Vineyard Gazette:

Last Thursday I was in a car accident. I was in a pretty thick fog, but I think it took about three seconds for the people around me to mobilize: directing traffic, calling for help, and assisting all of us who were injured. The professional response was immediate and outstanding, from the first EMT to the doctors who released me from the hospital with a pretty good case of whiplash, but nothing more.

Most especially, though, I want to thank the young woman who held my head and neck still, and talked to me until the ambulance arrived. I was kind of out of it, so I don’t know who you are, I couldn’t seem to recognize faces. Maybe you’re an angel. You were for me.

We live in a wonderful place. Thank you all.

Rick Bausman



Editors, Vineyard Gazette:

Martha’s Vineyard is fortunate to have a wonderful community resource in the talented person of Lia Kahler. On Sunday, Sept. 11, she presented her most recent benefit concert at the Old Whaling Church for the Animal Shelter of Martha’s Vineyard and Polly Hill Arboretum, for which both organizations received over $11,000. These were not the first organizations to be grateful for Ms. Kahler’s efforts. Every couple of years she organizes and performs a concert for worthy Island nonprofits and is wise and kind enough to select different groups that she has not helped before. She has helped the Whaling Church with the restoration of the organ, Alzheimer’s Service of Cape Cod and the Islands, Seeds of Peace, and the Island Food Pantry to name a few.

Her dedication goes way beyond her talent in performing. She seeks donations of goods and services from Island businesses for a silent auction as part of the performance experience. All proceeds go to the organizations she is helping. In addition she mails out over 2,000 invitations with an appeal for donations for groups she is sponsoring for each concert.

The shelter and the arboretum are grateful for her concert Songs of My Father in which she honored her father Albert Littlefield’s love of animals and nature. In doing so, his legacy lives on through her, and the Island’s animals and the arboretum are enormously benefited.

Duncan Ross

Oak Bluffs

The writer is chairman of the Animal Shelter of Martha’s Vineyard.


Editors, Vineyard Gazette:

When I was 17 my Aunt Marcia took me to have my ears pierced in Vineyard Haven and then purchased a lovely pair of hammered gold earrings from Mark Lender, a goldsmith on Main street. For 38 years I have loved these earrings, wearing them almost daily, through good times and bad.

Much to my dismay I lost them last week at Lambert’s Cove Beach. I took them off to put on my bathing cap and goggles for a swim. I placed them in a ziploc bag in my beach tote and went on my way. When I returned the ziploc was gone. At that point I knew a seagull must have been intrigued by the prospect of an unattended sandwich and went after the bag.

I searched, but to no avail. Yet, encouraged by my husband, I posted a sign at the beach parking lot. And amazingly a kind woman called with the happy news that her son had found my ziploc with one earring! Thanks to her and her environmentally-friendly, beach-cleaning son, I now have one earring and have found a goldsmith who will create a mate to complete my pair.

So watch out for those seagulls, but be glad we have such innocent thieves!

Karin Stanley

West Tisbury


Editors, Vineyard Gazette:

This study is a pretty good summation of the effects of televisions and set top boxes on energy consumption and CO2 generation:

Set top boxes use double the electricity when not in use than when in use. Not surprising given the fact that they have no conservation mode at all. So they use up the power of a number of 500-megawatt coal fired plants just to stay on when not needed for entertainment purposes. This is expected to double in coming years due to increased purchases of TVs and cable/satellite services.

And this study does not take into account the actual televisions themselves. A 42-inch screen uses even more power. So how does the lodging industry get out the message that energy conservation is important without hurting bookings is a question. It seems that eco-consciousness should somehow be incorporated into advertising and/or promotions.

Restless Wind Suites uses no set top boxes and uses high definition antenna combined with unlimited movies from Netflix using Blu-ray technology alongside other services streamed from the Internet through the Blu-ray wi-fi technology resulting in significant energy savings and all HD entertainment superior to cable. In addition to Netflix there are numerous other apps to choose from including Hulu, Vudu, Pandora, Amazon Plus, and many more with additional widgits being added as time passes. In addition Restless Wind Suites utilizes perimeter-based flat panel LED technology for superior picture quality with the lowest possible electrical use and warm LED lighting to reduce energy consumption without sacrificing lighting quality or quantity.

Our patrons love it, we save on energy costs, and the environment says thank you. It’s a total win-win for everyone. We would encourage others to try this option or any part of it. It works.

Frank Brunelle

Vineyard Haven


Editors, Vineyard Gazette:

The Friends of the Edgartown Free Public Library would like to thank Pat Rose for her years of service and dedication to the Edgartown Library.

Ms. Rose gave a report at a meeting of the Friends of the Edgartown Library on August 29, detailing the amount of funds she was able to collect and then contribute to the Friends for their work on behalf of the library. Pat, along with John Ortman, both of Chappaquiddick, and recently assisted by Christina Brown, have over the past five years collected bottles and cans on a nearly daily basis. They have been able to collect them from locations in Edgartown and beyond, including Sharky’s and Mink Meadows, as well as other locations and individuals, for the deposit refunds gained from the recycling centers.

Those five-cent redemptions have added up. The check donated to the Friends of the Library was the second contribution of $500 from Pat and her committee. Previously Pat and John were able to redeem and donate from their efforts $15,000 to the Edgartown Library Foundation.

Felicia Cheney, director of the Edgartown Public Library, commented on Pat’s dedication, “We are very appreciative of her Herculean efforts.” The members of the Friends are indeed grateful for the devotion of Pat Rose and her helpers for this extraordinary voluntary commitment to help the library in fund-raising.

Offerings to this recycling effort on behalf of the library can be joined by anyone. Simply drop off your returnable cans and bottles in the two barrels behind the Warren house, next to the Edgartown Library on North Water street. Or call the Edgartown Library (508-626-4221) to leave a message for Pat Rose if you have a large bag of redeemable bottles and cans. She will pick them up!

Adele Dreyer


The writer is vice president of Friends of the Edgartown Public Library.


Editors, Vineyard Gazette:

Thank you, thank you, thank you! Actually, there aren’t thank-yous enough in this world to cover the Islanders who played a role in making this year’s Martha’s Vineyard International Film Festival the rollicking success it was. But I’ll try.

First, thanks to our attendees. It’s your enthusiasm that keeps us going. Thanks, next, to the amazing corps of 50-plus volunteers who make every minute of our four-day fest possible. That means you, box office workers, ticket takers, clickers, runners, projectionists! Thanks to Treather Gassman who whipped up the best parties ever, to Patrice who greeted everyone at the door, and to Sam Dunn, whose Saltwater Restaurant helped us kick off opening night in grand style. Thanks, too, to Woody Schulman, who literally kept things moving. Stephen Zlabotny for his creative designs and artwork. And thank you, Mary Spencer. It’s a tough job rounding up the volunteers, keeping everyone’s assignments straight and the bases covered — not to mention managing the box office. But you always pull it off, and I’m grateful.

Finally, thanks to our many Island sponsors. Please know that I appreciate your hard work.

When I brought my family to the Vineyard in 1996, we were drawn primarily by the amazing vitality of the Island’s cultural institutions. I’m grateful the community has made room for one more, for the MV Film Society and its annual Martha’s Vineyard International Film Festival.

See you at the movies!

Richard Paradise

Vineyard Haven

and Falmouth

The Vineyard Gazette welcomes letters to the editor on any subject concerning Martha’s Vineyard. The newspaper strives to publish all letters as space allows, although the editor reserves the right to reject letters that in her judgment are inappropriate. Letters must be signed, and should include a place of residence and contact telephone number. The Gazette does not publish anonymous letters.