Sunday, July 2, 2017

A year later: Brightline and “exaggerated” Letters to the Editor in The Palm Beach Post, “laced with not too subtle fear-mongering.”

Response to Frank Cerabino, the ‘satirist’ at the Post.

Below is a “Point of View” by Tequesta resident Dennis Myers titled, “Yes, Frank [Cerabino], it is all about freight!” that was published in July of last year:

Recent weeks have seen letters to The Palm Beach Post voicing renewed outrage over the potential damage expanding the local railway system will bring to the quality of our lives. Sentiments range from exaggerated speculation countered by point-of-fact responses to earnest opposition laced with not too subtle fear-mongering. [emphasis added] For me, however, all the hand-wringing comments miss several key points in the argument.
     I think the potential for local economic impact of railway system expansion means two things: 1) Despite the assurances of local politicians’ shared concerns from north Palm Beach County through the Treasure Coast, there will be no common political will for intervention, only continued support from every branch of our state government; and 2) Yes, Frank Cerabino, despite the frequent official denials, since All Aboard Florida (AAF) is the vehicle for our local railway expansion, it surely is “All About Freight.”

and. . .

     First option is to mitigate and adapt. Mitigate by ensuring that our local officials plan and support the installation and maintenance of “quiet zones” at all the rail crossings where the onerous sounds of train horns 24/7 can be silenced to the benefit of all. Adapt our fire-rescue resources through the use of substations on either side of the rail corridor to ensure continued rapid emergency response capabilities.
     Second option is to move and adjust. Relocate to the west where we can trade the train horns and traffic waits at crossings for the car horns and traffic congestion at stoplights that plague the quality of life there.

“Second option is to move and adjust.” Excellent point, Mr. Myers, and your use of the word “plague” was brilliant.

A very well-written and thoughtful letter with perfect use of satire to hammer the point home. Thank you for taking the time and effort.

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