Wednesday, June 29, 2005

We Went to the 'MDEQ/CAP' Meeting Yesterday...

...and it ran smoothly until the end, which I'm convinced was by plan - not by accident. Strangely enough, throughout the meeting, the Lone Tree entourage had to use microphones to project their delicate little voices. Strangely enough, they waited until there were NO TV CAMERAS around to capture the vicious verbal attack on this one 'elderly woman' - as they have me labeled. Following is the email I sent this morning to everybody on Cheryl Howe's MDEQ/CAP email list.

As some of you know, I attended subject meeting yesterday, June 28. The meeting seemed to be orderly until the last five minutes, at which time a litigant/environmental extremist shouted he wanted to hear no more from Shirley. That would be me. At that point the pack mentality kicked in and they all yelled at me… with their various complaints, mostly that they didn’t want to hear how healthy my family and I are after living on the Tittabawassee River floodplain 45 years.

Funny thing is, I was responding to an attack one of the litigant/environutz made concerning the AKT Peerless representative. I did not feel a need to say anything about my health to this group. They know who I am… obviously!

I was so stunned by the viciousness of the Lone Tree/River WATCH gang that I was unable to respond appropriately to the news reporter who wanted to talk with me after the meeting. Here is my take on the meeting and usefulness of future meetings of any kind.· Facilitator handled things well.
  • DEQ handled things appropriately.
  • Official Lone Tree behaved appropriately… until the last five minutes.
  • Tittabawassee River Voice and Midland Matters not only behaved appropriately, but even agreed with some of the points suggested by Lone Tree.
  • I actually felt a ‘town hall’ type of meeting would be an acceptable form of Dow/MDEQ/Resident communication until the verbal attack on me.
  • I no longer feel town hall meetings are an option. The litigant/environmental groupies obviously would take over at any meeting where there is not structure and specific guidelines, not to mention perhaps, a bouncer! ‘Those people’ have been together for three years, as one of them reminded us at the meeting. They are a well-honed tool of the Lone Tree Council and will jump on command.
    • Lone Tree and their pack are agreeable as long as we (non-litigants) agree with them (litigants and wannabes).
    • Lone Tree’s Rhiddick said they do not trust any communication put out jointly by Dow and DEQ.
    • Such joint communication is trusted by most residents involved in this fiasco.
    • Lone Tree may have some reasonable people in their group but they created a monster in recruiting for their multi-faceted attack on Dow Chemical and most of the residents along the Tittabawassee River floodplain.
    • It is only in the past few months Lone Tree has decided to include the whole ‘watershed’ in their desire to make this dioxin debacle a career opportunity for themselves. After all, we ALL want our rivers cleaner and our wildlife healthy.
I am sure all rational participants of last night’s meeting will agree that we need to have representatives from each location within the tri-city area – litigants and non-litigants – to work as liaisons with our neighborhoods and keep the doors of communication open between Dow, DEQ and residents. The town hall concept will not work. There! I’ve said it…. And I’m wondering how many other participants from the June 28 DEQ CAP meeting have also changed their minds about the usefulness of town hall type meetings.

1 comment:

sherle said...

Ooooops! Forgot to say how how happy & healthy I am today!