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Talking to a brick wall

By Staff | Dec 3, 2008

To the editor,

As most of you know, the words “common sense” and “rational” are two words lost in most governmental decisions. There are many examples of this on this island of Sanibel.

I know many of you think I think I know it all by the amount of letters I write to newspapers… believe me, I know very little. The truth is people call me on the telephone to inform me of things that go on that impact their lives but feel they cannot express themselves because it might affect their friendships, or business. And there’s always the political correctness of most of them.

Since those two words are not in my vocabulary, they ask me to bring these issues out in the open through my letters, and in my own way. Even though most of these issues have nothing to do with me personally, I will always comment on what I think is not fair, fact or just stupid. There seems to be a silent majority out there bugging me on to write, write and write, until I’m tarred and feathered.

Case in point: Many people bought bayfront property thinking they could eventually build a boat dock is they bought a boat, or just to use it to lay out in the sun. Surprise-surprise… no can do! It seems their real estate agent neglected, or forgot to inform them of, the city law forbidding the building of any new docks. For environmental reasons, they say. Damaging to the aquatic preserve, or something to that effect. When I heard that, all I could think of was with all the docks in place at this time, shouldn’t the bay waters be dead by now if in fact docks caused deadly harm to the bay waters?

The docks have been with us a long time, and as much time I have been on the water as a fishing guide, I have not seen a decline of fish or water quality. In fact, there are times when the best fishing is around docks.

Another fact is, docks create habitat for all kinds of sea life. Anytime you put any structure in the bay or gulf waters, it creates habitat. Why do you think artificial reefs are so popular?

So denying the permits for docks is actually denying the growth of the sea life we all cherish, and keeps the bay waters healthy.

And here is something I can’t understand. If the City of Sanibel will not issue any dock permits for environmental reasons, why did they build a dock at the boat ramp? I don't know if this is true or not, but I was told that the city is planning to build some more docks for police and fire use at the boat ramp. Has this area somehow become environmentally secure for the city? If it has, please tell us all how you did it!

As the old saying goes, “What’s good for the goose is good for the gander.” In this case, the goose being the city and the gander being the rest of us!

So all you people with useless waterfront property, good luck! Unfortunately, I think I’m talking to a brick wall.

Bob Sabatino