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Shelter Island Reporter Letters to the Editor


Not a quitter
To the Editor:
In response to the profile of my daughter, Aterahme Lawrence (“A long way travelled in a very short time,” Sept. 5):

Family and friends always say to me, “If I didn’t know you, I wouldn’t know that you struggle financially.” I give/gave my children all of me and 1,000%.

I have never touched a street drug in my 41 years of life. Anything I’ve ever taken came from doctors and sometimes their professional advice isn’t the best. A road I never want or wanted to travel down. I don’t even drink alcohol. I have only willingly/knowingly formed a habit for one thing, cigarettes, unfortunately.

The last two to four years have been stressful for our family life, losing a father and husband and being a widow with eight children, a brother almost dying, losing everything that we ever owned due to a flood, which is the only time I could say, “I feel off my A game.”

My children have never been/lived in an abusive or violent home; I moved when I was pregnant with Aterahme from an abusive relationship I had with the father. I grew up in a very strict household, I know abuse! I didn’t want to carry it into adulthood/parenting. I moved to Shelter Island to give them a better life, a chance to experience things most African-American kids don’t.

Aterahme and her siblings were raised very well — poor, but well. I manged to keep them up-to-date with the latest. Throughout the years, I took in four or five of their friends who came from “bad homes,” yet they were financially stable. “All that glitters isn’t gold.” No matter the struggles, we were a family.

I pulled my children from Shelter Island School; no one would listen or stand up for what was right.

The moment I became a mother is what what I live and breathe. I’m not perfect and don’t know all about parenting. But one thing in life I know — I haven’t failed being a mother and I deserve better acknowledgement and words or not be mentioned at all.

Aterahme is strong, a go-getter, eager to learn, driven, adaptable to any environment/situation she’s in. A lot like her mother. The only difference is she/they have me as their backbone. I do not quit!
Latricia Lawrence-Hazell

Care and courtesy
To the Editor:
For the last three weeks, the Reporter has published extensive letters from the Republican candidates for the Town Board without identifying them as such. It is bad enough that they didn’t have the good will or interest in transparency to identify themselves as candidates, without you compounding their mistake.

Worse, on page 14 in last week’s paper, the article claimed that “a follow up story will present the views of the three other candidates” and then lists three names, omitting Jim Colligan altogether.

Julie Lane knows that Jim Colligan is running. Her omitting his name was just insulting. One hopes she is planning on presenting his views as well.

Could we get some editing here? And a little care and courtesy?
Linda Hacker
Shelter Island
Editor’s note: The Reporter has published a correction online and in print.

Oughta be a law
To the Editor:
The games have begun, the signs are up, and this newspaper has given the voters a rundown on who is who in the political race on Shelter Island for November 2019. There are “Meet the Candidates” doings and the League of Women Voters has scheduled a forum. They are off and running.

Election Day is two months away, so I am not at all happy with political signs, a blight on the landscape. Our house rule: a sign, but a week before Election Day and down the day after. I am sure there will be more as time goes on. Ugh. Real estate signs are bad enough.

It seems the same old issues, with promises, promises, but nothing seems to change, and the issues seem to get worse. Buried in last week’s Reporter, and I mean buried, was a government news article about a possible affordable housing project. However, it has to go before the Community Housing Board. Why?

This needs to be done now. Start the process. Either it is approved by the Town Board or it’s not. Of course, this article can be read online by all, so I suggest, if you have not seen it, please check it out.

For years, whenever there is some unfortunate situation regarding rental properties or some other unintended life consequences, I hear the words “There oughta to be a law” to prevent these unfortunate circumstances. Shelter Island had a few unfortunate circumstances and several people complained to the Town Board, so they created a law about short-term rentals.

Then there was an outcry and there were promises to amend this law. O.K., we now have a Shelter Island rental law. “There oughta be a law” to get rid of this outrageous, unconstitutional, mind-boggling law. Hopefully there’s a candidate out there that will attempt to do this.

Please go to shelterislandtown.us and read the law. Perhaps it’s just me that finds this law disgusting and unnecessary. There oughta be a law, maybe, but not this one.

Summer of 2019 is not officially over yet, so enjoy every last bit of it on beautiful Shelter Island, and is it not?
Georgiana Ketcham
Shelter Island

Properly thanking
To the Editor:
Two weeks ago I was out on Fresh Pond and had just finished our sixth round of bi-weekly water testing. As I reached behind me to cast off from the test site mooring, I pulled a bit too hard on the line, not realizing until too late that the moor buoy was on the other side of the canoe and in an instant I was in the water and the canoe turned turtle.

I scrambled to try and secure the testing equipment and was able to right the boat and get everything inside, but was unable to bail the water out. I decided to swim back to our landing where I had a kayak, which I could then use to tow the canoe back to shore.

During all of my bonehead maneuvers, I was unaware that a girl from the opposite side of the Pond, having seen all of this from her porch, had embarked in her own kayak with the intention of rendering assistance. She caught up with me when I had almost reached our landing and offered her help.

Somewhat embarrassed, I declined, but I am not certain that I properly thanked her for all her efforts. I don’t know her name, hence this letter.

Thank you.
James W. Eklund
Shelter Island