Letters to the Editor

Energy could be better spent than by criticizing US Customs | Letters

Dear Editor;

I am a senior at Spring Street International School and I am disappointed in many of the members of our community who have been very angry and aggressive about the relocation of the Customs office. I fee that all this energy could be directed to positive and important issues in our community. Would you please consider printing or posting the attached letter (below).

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I am incredibly disappointed in the members of our island community who are spending so much time and energy being angry about US Customs moving to another office.

Why be angry about something that is so absolutely petty when you can direct that energy to something that is much more worthwhile, like promoting cancer research, promoting awareness of domestic violence, or any number of other important social issues. This change of offices is an opportunity to create a better working environment for the Customs employees.

The number of employees has expanded because we are on e of the busiest ports of entry in Washington state. Anyone who crosses the international border must stop at the nearest port of entry, which many times is Friday Harbor. In the past, many of these people would only go to the office at the port and leave. Now, they will be walking into the center of town and may take the opportunity to shop at our local businesses, while before they would have never even entered town.

The Customs employees here in Friday Harbor are known as officers, not agents, which means their authority is not as inclusive as an agent. Also, these officers are members of our community. They own houses here, they shop here, their kids go to school here, and they retire here. They are members of our community. And when you attack someone's job, their livelihood, you attack them.

The personal attacks and anger that were shown at the recent community meetings do not reflect well on our community. As a member of this community, watching this unfold has shown me that there is a large group of people who are more concerned about an office being relocated than about many of our local and state social issues that would benefit greatly from their involvement.

Lenora Johnson/San Juan Island

 

Community Events, April 2014

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