Submitted by Eric Chandler.
I recently read in the comment area following a recent letter-to-the-editor in The Suburban Times where someone asked, “What was the devastating ecological effect?”
I was compelled to write a Reply to that comment, but felt my response should get to a wider audience, because, actually it is a good question. So here goes…..an opportunity to educate:
DEVASTATING – “highly destructive or damaging.”
ECOLOGICAL – “relating to or concerned with the relation of living organisms to one another and to their physical surroundings.”
When things that used to live in a location that either die or have to leave a natural setting in order to stay alive, that is evidence that some sort of DEVASTATING ECOLOGICAL event has occurred.
Another more-potent evidence of a DEVASTATING ECOLOGICAL event is the EXTINCTION of a species (i.e., ALL are dead….EVERYWHERE):
- Like Dinosaurs
- Because of Humans:
- Since 1500, 900 species
- Since 2012,160 species
WHY DO DEVASTATING ECOLOGICAL EVENTS OCCUR ?
Sometimes it is NATURAL – Extra-terrestrial Events (i.e., Asteroid/Meteor), Floods, Earthquakes, Volcanic Eruptions, Fire caused by Lightning or Other Natural Events, etc.
Unfortunately, we HUMAN BEINGS are, more-often-than-not, the greatest cause for DEVASTATING ECOLOGICAL effects, even though we have the capacity to do otherwise.
We have for eons been far too-inclined to practice activities based on our need to:
- Kill with Abandon (including our own kind);
- Acquire Power/Riches;
- Remain Ignorant: by Failing to Actively Seek Knowledge;
- Practice Hubris: thru arrogance, showing excessive pride or self-confidence;
- Act Stupidly by Ignoring Knowledge/Proven Facts.
To me one of the worst is the latter….doing the wrong thing when one knows better. It normally happens when one-or-more of the preceding Human Failings occurs. Like being informed with proven facts and deciding to ignore them…..as is the case with Waughop Lake.
I am absolutely certain, after 3 years of following and contributing to the discussions on this matter, that our City and State institutions have failed to do the correct thing. What is particularly irksome is to read some patronizing pontification which is based on Ignorance, Hubris, and/or Stupidity, and then say, “Hey, we were right & you were wrong!” Really ?
Now….I gladly admit I am not an expert in the Sciences surrounding the discussions/actions with respect the “Jewel of Ft Steilacoom Park”. However, I am an intelligent man of 75 years on this earth (in 25 days), as well as a Lakewood Citizen since October 1987 (i.e., 33 years & 7 months). I also live within 2500 feet of the subject lake.
I consider myself intelligent because I have earned a BA in Information Systems Management and have 20 years of work experience in extremely complex Information Technology problem-solving actions…including at the international level. I have taught IT for 20 years at the college level. I have successfully done extensive research and compiled statistics for a wide-variety of issues for the US Government and WA State which have resulted in necessary equipment procurements and/or procedural changes. In retirement I have continued to practice as an Amateur Historian on World War I and, in the past 5 years, have taught myself to be a citizen scientist in Mycology (the study of fungus/mushrooms).
So…..I know extremely well how to do research and separate fact from fiction. What I have seen coming from Lakewood Citizens regarding Waughop Lake IS FACT BASED and WORTHY of RESPECT.
Fellow Lakewood citizens…did you know Don Russell, Tom McClellan, Professor Jim Gawel of UWT and Professor Jeff Tepper of UPS, Ken Karch, PE……are all bonafide experts in recognizing and solving complex Water Quality Issues and since 2012 they have been doing everything they can to Save Waughop Lake? And there have been many others, myself included, who have had one overarching mission….PROTECT THAT DAMN LAKE ! Everything we have done, said, and written has been performed thru self-sacrifice of extensive time, effort, and, yes, emotions. NONE of us have been paid a cent to do this, and for what? Has anyone been thanked for this volunteerism and sincerity ? Not.
To be absolutely ignored and denigrated by people who ARE PAID to do their jobs is beyond the pale, inexcusable. What a sad, sad situation.
Oh yes….”What was the devastating ecological effect ?” Answered. Further….and, importantly, WHY it happened.