Watch out for whales
Dear Editor:Just when you thought the whales of the planet were safe. Almost four years after the courts ruled in favor of the whales by ceasing the deployment of LFAS sonar into the oceans by the U.S. Navy, the Navy is at it again – they are on the warpath.In the face of admitted facts that appear in the Joint Interim Report Bahamas Marine Mammal Stranding Event of March 15-16, 2000, that fault the death of over 17 whales in the Bahamas on the use of the LFAS sonar by the Navy and which has been proven by necropsy, the Navy once again wants to deploy this lethal weapon in over 70 percent of the world’s oceans. This would leave all the cetacea, especially the whales, in a highly vulnerable and unstable position.LFAS (low-frequency active sonar) is a low-level-frequency sonar that goes undetected by ship radar but is totally detected by the whales. The low level frequency actually destroys the whales’ eardrums, thus blowing out their echolocation guidance system. This in turn causes the whales to lose their sense of direction and often is the cause for mass strandings and beachings.The only way that a whale can determine its direction is through its echolocation system. Dolphins have showed up beached as well within 24 hours of sonar testing, and bleeding through their eyes and mouth because the sonar basically fried their brains.Last time I checked, the whales are God’s creatures. They belong to the earth, not man, and they are older than almost any other living being on this earth. It is up to man to act as a benevolent caretaker of the whales and treat them with the respect that they deserve.War or no war, it’s time to make peace on earth and its time to take responsibility to make peace a priority. The great humanitarian and doctor Albert Schweitzer once said, “It is a man’s sympathy with all creatures that truly makes him a man. Until he extends his circle of compassion to all living things, man himself will not find peace.” He also said, “The moral character of a society will be judged by how it treats the animals.”President Bush has given the public four days to tell Congress that we want to protect the whales and that the Navy is not allowed to knowingly cause them harm.Please send your comments to: nrdcaction.org, click on “Tell the Navy to stop harming whales with high-intensity sonar.” It is imperative that we take a stand against any further harm to one of God’s oldest living creatures and begin to remember the mature beings that we are destined to evolve into.Alecia EvansSolvang, Calif./Basalt
It was standing room only Tuesday evening as Aspen residents packed into the Pearl Pass conference room of City Hall for a conversation around emergency preparedness.