Tuesday, 28 June 2022

BlueWolf: Questions for our future

Over the last decade, I have achieved some notoriety for writing letters to the editor that could charitably be described as somewhere between preaching and diatribe. My true intent has generally been that of education however, like most opinionated adults, I have served my own ideals and agendas with little apology.


Though I probably will continue in this fashion in other articles this time I will hold myself to questions that are of importance to Lake County residents. The questions I pose will, I hope, stimulate reasoned and comprehensive discussions of issues important to the future of our county.


What concept of growth or progress should we accept? If the traditional western model of continual population expansion, construction and development is to be accepted, how can we escape the eventual overcrowding, destruction of rural agrarianism and degradation of our natural resources that inevitably follows?


What are the qualities of Lake County we cherish the most? What makes Lake County special besides the personalities and energy of its citizens? If we value the open space, the trees, birds and animals that share it with us and give it character, how can we protect their future?


If it is the quality of our water; the lake, creeks, springs and wells that sustain us, what can be done to absolutely insure their quality and abundance?


If it is the soil that holds the seed of our sustenance should modern systems fail, what can be done to insure that enough remains open and available to agriculture to provide food or fuels for our future survival?


If it is the quality of the air, purest in the state, how can we demand that every aspect of our development and lifestyle preserve that purity?


Should we decide that the preservation of the previously described natural resources be a priority of commitment, these questions set the boundaries of other questions.


As a small rural community, can we reasonably expect the same levels of service and maintenance that larger cities provide or will we instead embrace and be proud of our rural nature, understanding the economic limits to public services that our priorities will sustain?


Do we continue to widen our streets and highways for the inevitable obsession of additional automobiles or do we make commitments to a myriad of forms of public transportation for our workforce, as well as senior and disabled citizens?


Can we keep our communities from spreading uncontrollably until, in some far future, they grow together to create one continual town that encircles the lake? What can be done to grow them internally so that each is its own self-contained community that holds all the necessary elements for its citizens so they are not required to drive elsewhere for necessities?


If we commit to controlling our growth and development, how can the businesses that depend on that growth continue and prosper, or must the concept of mushrooming profits that define “progress” be redefined to allow only the best and most respected to survive? What type of new business growth could contribute to a “green” and “organic” and more “self-sufficient” Lake County?


How can we begin to treat the epidemic of drug and alcohol abuse sickness that affects so many of our citizens? Could a commitment to the arts, music, entertainment, family agriculture and education contribute to gatherings and community spirit events to promote that healing?


How will we encourage growth in businesses or technologies that provide a living wage and how can we restrain the price of land and homes so that our own children can afford them, rather than seeing them purchased by higher income urban refugees looking for investment properties?


These are just some of the questions we need to discuss. What are your opinions?


James BlueWolf lives in Lakeport.


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Upcoming Calendar

30Jun
06.30.2022 7:30 am - 8:30 am
Rotary Club of Middletown
1Jul
07.01.2022 5:00 pm - 5:30 pm
Essential workers mural dedication
2Jul
2Jul
07.02.2022 9:00 am - 11:00 am
Junior Ranger Program: Lake ecology
2Jul
07.02.2022 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at the Mercantile
2Jul
07.02.2022 11:00 am - 1:00 pm
Weekly writing workshop
2Jul
07.02.2022 11:00 am - 11:00 pm
64th annual Redbud Parade and Festival
4Jul
07.04.2022
Independence Day
5Jul
07.05.2022 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at Library Park
5Jul
07.05.2022 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Rotary Club of Clear Lake

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