We love a good “Local kid done good” story.
There’s a level of pride an entire community can take in seeing someone who grew up here move on to new challenges in life and excel. Here at the paper, we love seeing people we covered when they were younger excel in whatever endeavor they have taken on as adults or college students.
And we saw a cool story this week.
About one year ago, Indian River High School softball player Karlie Smith showcased her nickname “Karlie Clutch” in dramatic fashion when she lofted a game-winning homerun in the 7th inning in a thrilling contest against Delmar. Our sports reporter nearly lost his mind when Smith hit the shot, if his Twitter feed is any indication.
Well, this week we learned that Smith was named American Athletic Conference Player of the Week for her efforts during her freshman campaign at East Carolina University. Smith helped East Carolina top the University of North Carolina with her run scored and RBI to lift her team to a 4-3 win after trailing 3-0 in the 7th inning. Then, over two weekend games against the University of Connecticut, Smith launched grand slams in consecutive games.
She finished the week with 10 RBIs, five runs scored and two homers, in only 14 at-bats. For those unfamiliar with softball statistics, that’s remarkable.
We salute Karlie Clutch for her efforts in her freshman year, and wish her continued success long into the future.
It’s now May, and you know what that means — it’s time to get our game faces on for the season. Think local. Shop local. And suggest local. We’re all in this together.
It’s simple, but it’s not.
The easiest thing in the world to do Monday night while watching violence and fires engulf Baltimore was to shake our collective fist at the television and say, “Why would anyone burn their own neighborhood to the ground? These scofflaws are taking away the attention from the people who are protesting peacefully.”
But it’s not.
It’s mostly not simple because human beings have a way of making things very complicated, and attempting to delve into the psyche of another human being is often an exercise into madness itself.
Can I understand or relate to what a young black male has going through his mind after hearing story after story of other young black males being killed by police officers? Can I relate to what a police officer in a particularly troubled neighborhood is thinking as he tries to maintain peace and protect innocent civilians, with the underlying goal of just being able to get home safely to see his family at night? No, I can’t. On either front.
Let’s start with the basics. Mayhem broke out in Baltimore on Monday following the funeral services for Freddie Gray, the 25-year-old man who died April 19 from fatal injuries he suffered while in police custody. People are emotional. They get tired of protesting peacefully, and they lash out at all that is around them.
But it’s not.
I don’t believe that this is all about Freddie Gray. Oh, his death might have been the proverbial final straw that broke the camel’s back, and his funeral was the impetus of Monday’s ugly discord, but I believe this goes much further into what is perceived as a systematic injustice for minorities in this nation. And poor people. And those who just feel generally disenfranchised by the machinations of a government who often listens to the few, while supposedly representing the masses.
And, of course, there are the police officers. No, not the ones accused of fatally injuring Gray, or the one who drew his handgun and fired at a 50-year-old man running away from him in South Carolina. I’m talking about the ones who put that shield on before every shift with pride, and who do their best to protect those who need protecting the most, while trying to enforce the laws that our government has instructed them to enforce.
This is the vast majority of police officers, from my experience, and they get dragged down by what we called in the Marine Corps “The 10-percenters” — that 10 percent in any group that can’t, or won’t, get on board with the program and brings everybody else down with them.
How do you feel if you are one of the 90 percent that does care, that doesn’t abuse citizens, that does feel invested in the community? Now you’re stuck in riot gear and fending off bricks and rocks and hate from the people you are sworn to protect because of the actions of others. You get angry, right? But at that point it is your duty to promote peace, not make it more unattainable.
You see, it’s simple, but it’s not.
While going through social media during the riots I read words like “animals” and “thugs” to describe those causing damage and inflicting harm. Those were not words I came across when students at the University of Kentucky were starting fires and causing damage after their basketball team lost a game, nor did I find them when I read accounts of Maryland students doing the same when their basketball team won a game. It would be simple to just utter the word “racism” here and let that point sit. But it’s not that simple.
None of this is simple.
One side of this argument cannot understand the actions of the other side, and that other side feels as if it doesn’t have a side that matters in the grand scheme of things anyway. It’s an aggravating loop that is promised to continue on in perpetuity if some kind of new dynamic is not introduced into the equation.
So, what is this missing dynamic that can change the course of this dangerous trajectory? I honestly have no clue. I can guess that open dialogue would be the first step, as well as a strong commitment from our elected officials that we will build our own country to where it needs to be before we make more strides elsewhere.
I’d also suggest that both accountability and respect have to play a part. People from all sides must be accountable for their actions, and nobody in this world can reasonably expect to earn respect from others if no respect is given. Good police need to out bad police. Good citizens need to out bad citizens. People who are angry must learn to fight with courage and words rather than sticks and stones. The violence must be replaced by dialogue and respect. It’s really kind of simple.
But it isn’t.
Letters to the Editor
Annual CROPwalk set for this weekend
Can one step make a difference? Many of us walking together to make our community, our country and our nation a better place, through a hands-up program, can. Join us on May 3 at the Bandstand to support the CROPwalk. Contact [me] at (302) 537-9417 or at email@example.com to find out how you can join the walk or go online to www.crophungerwalk.org/Bethany BeachDE to make a donation and find out more about the walk.
Twenty-five percent of the money raised will stay in our community, and the rest will be used throughout the world to build wells, start small businesses, help small farmers, encourage education and bring a feeling of hope to many. Alone, it is sometimes hard to change much, but together our ability to provide change is mind boggling. You have a hundred people who donate nothing and you have nothing. A hundred people who donate $1 and you have $100, which can make a difference. Join us to make a difference. There will be entertainment at the bandstand for people who can’t or don’t want to walk. We hope to see you there.
Rose Mary Hendrix
IRHS seniors grateful for support
The Indian River High School Class of 2016 would like to thank the following local businesses for their donations and support in helping to lower the cost of their prom tickets: Bethany Trading Company, Treasure Quest Shoppe, Rehoboth Toy & Kite Company, Creative Concepts, Bethany Auto Parts and Marine Supplies, Hook’em & Cook’em Outfitters, Owens Station Sporting Clays, Christmas Spirit, Bethany Surf Shop, Joann Holladay—Longaberger Consultant, Bethany Books, Cup Cakes in Bloom, RACC Fitness, Fenwick Shoals Surf Shop, Wild About Birds, The Barn, Brasure’s Carpet Care, Jeanne Richt Hastings, Floaters, Movies at Midway, Lewes Harbour Marina, Kids Ketch, Quiet Storm, Browseabout Books, Nicola Pizza, Irish Eyes, Odysea, Danette Mumford (Thirty-One Consultant), Subway, Sea Level, Carolina Street, Bayside Wines and Spirits, Ellen Rice Gallery, Fisher’s Popcorn, DiFebo’s restaurant, Fish Tales, Cracker Barrel, Maui Golf, Penguin Diner, Matteo’s Salsa Loco, Snyder’s Candy, Birch Tree Café, Pottery Place, Millsboro Lanes, Mickey’s Crab House, Edible Arrangements, McCabe’s Market, Bethany Trading Co., Kilwin’s Chocolate, Sam Ellis Photography, Millers Creek, Mumford Van Zee Productions, Mio Fratello, Perfect Furnishings, Armand’s, Surf Sessions, Summer Salts Café, Turquoise restaurant, Serendipity Quilt Shop, Blooming Boutique, Taste of South Philly, Olive Garden, Sam’s Club, Starbucks, Millville Pet Stop, Country Wicker, Alison Walt (Mary Kay Consultant), Indian River Construction Class, Super G, Food Lion, Make Ya Look Salon, Pepsi and Kohl’s Associates in Action.
Again, the Indian River Class of 2016 would like to thank you for your contributions, along with the community members that came to the events.
Class of 2016
Indian River High School
Chamber director thankful for suppport
On behalf of the Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and staff, I would like to thank everyone who helped make the 26th Annual Ocean to Bay Bike Tour an absolute success. The event brought more than 1,800 cyclists and their families and friends to the Quiet Resorts.
The feedback has been tremendous. Residents and visitors who participated in the tour were pleased with the routes, rest stops and post-party festivities, and many business owners reported a highly-profitable weekend. The Chamber is thankful to all those involved in the organization and implementation of the event and the friendly, positive manner in representing both the event and community. Please take a moment to see our “Thank You” in this edition of the Coastal Point.
Safety is our primary concern, so a special thanks to DelDOT, Sussex County paramedics, local and state police departments, local EMTs and fire companies, ARES Group and Coastal Spokes Club, who joined forces to make our cyclists and community safe throughout the day.
In addition, thank you to the community as a whole for your patience and support especially the Saturday morning of the event. The success of the 26th Annual Ocean to Bay Bike Tour lies in the collaboration with our members, businesses and entire community. We, as a Chamber, are blessed to live and work with outstanding people. Thank you!
Kristie Maravalli, Executive Director
Chamber of Commerce
Reader offers info on seismic testing
There has been much published in the recent years about the potential impacts concerning the BOEM directives for seismic testing. Let’s get the facts straight for everyone.
According to the BOEM 788-page document on the seismic testing slated for the area off Ocean City and Delaware:
“This Final Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) covers the potential significant environmental effects of multiple geological and geophysical (G&G) activities on the Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) in the Mid- and South Atlantic Planning Areas. It evaluates the types of G&G surveys and activities in the three program areas managed by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM): oil and gas; renewable energy; and marine minerals.”
So, seismic testing is just not for gas and oil. A deep scan of the ocean substrate is required for these projects, such as wind farms and sand for beach replenishments. Why? Shipwrecks, WWII armaments, existing cables and historical anthropological artifacts all have to be accounted for. Is this our fate? That human need and greed supersede our role as sentient beings on this planet?
And if you observed as I did, the pictures of seals that the Coastal Point has published in recent weeks, then please question the lack of scientific rigor associated with this ecosystem devastation.
“Thirty-nine species of marine mammals occur or may occur within the AOI, including 34 cetacean species, 1 sirenian (the Florida subspecies of the West Indian manatee), and 4 pinnipeds (gray seal, harbor seal, hooded seal, and harp seal). The manatee and the four seal species probably do not occur in the AOI currently; therefore, only 34 marine mammal species are potentially impacted.
“Six of the potentially impacted marine mammal species are endangered species, including five baleen whales (NARW, blue whale, fin whale, sei whale, and humpback whale) and one toothed whale (sperm whale). The IPFs affecting marine mammals are active acoustic sound sources, vessel and equipment noise, vessel traffic, aircraft traffic and noise, trash and debris, and accidental fuel spills.”
Probably do not occur? That a federal agency would violate the due process of NEPA in this matter is astounding. NEPA standards require any federal agency to verify substantive evidence in published documents, especially for anticipated impacts of this magnitude. Where is the review here?
At the end of the day, we are facing an industrialized ocean which will limit species density and diversity. And for Delmarva, the potential losses for commercial fishing industry and tourism are catastrophic. All the billions of dollars at stake.
Gregg Rosner, Executive Director