[Coral-List] Saving reefs and the wild places

Melissa Keyes mekvinga at yahoo.com
Fri Mar 24 10:51:35 EST 2006

Dear Dr. Szmant, and Listers,
  "...we all love those pristine "nobody has been here 
before me" vistas and remote islands, and so we want to protect them for 
the future."
  I must defer.  Here on St. Croix, a smallish island with a population of 55,000, we are having two "camps".  One, the "Let's keep it the way it is" people, and the other the devlopers.
  The local environmental association has been able to block almost all large resort property developement.  For some odd reason, the developers want to go in and fence us out of the most beautiful beaches and bays here that we love, and bring in hundreds or thousands of visitors who seem to want something very different than a beautiful beach, and pristine corals.
  Tourists cry, "What are we going to do?"  and, "What are we going to do next?". They cannot seem to relax.  Diving a pleasant coral reef is boring  without Sharks! and Dolphins! and Manta Rays!  They seem to require nonstop entertainment.  
  There was a meeting last week that had a theme of, "Can't we compromise?"  Few attended, as the "Disney World" types look at a beautiful mountain and sea vista and believe there is nothing there.  I was amazed to learn this only recently.  Nothing there.
  Sometimes it seems humans are just two polarized groups, with no possible middle ground for everyone. 
  Melissa Keyes
  St. Croix, US Virgin Islands

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