A modest proposal
To the Editor:
I agree with Mr. Novak’s concern (Your Letters, “Zika and the Island,” February 11) regarding our “friends” from Latin America returning to the Island after going home for the winter.
If the Suffolk County Department of Health Services fails to immediately start testing for Zika, I believe Shelter Island must take the initiative to protect its true residents from this mosquito-borne menace.
Ticket takers on both ferries should be supplied with iPhone-compatible facial recognition software to identify travelers who might originate from Central or South America. Potential Zika carriers could be identified by recent passport itineraries (“Group 1”).
If they have no passport, it should be assumed that they have indeed traveled South (“Group 2”). Both groups would then be transported to a “Holding Area” to be constructed on part of the former Klenawicus property, and held in quarantine until the CDC figures out how best to test for this virus and for how long these folks remain infectious. Detainees will be tattooed with a discrete “Z” on their forearms for easy identification.
Since the Island is reachable by anyone with a small dingy or inflatable, a wall should be constructed to encircle the entire Island from potentially harmful travelers. A special tax could be added to the incomes of legal and illegal Latin American resident workers to pay for the wall.
Hopefully, all of this will blow over by mid-spring, when the services of the detainees will be sorely needed to cut our lawns, clean our pools and fix our roofs.
If not, I hear that many of the Syrian refugees are willing and able to fill these jobs.
Make America Great Again!