Dear Editor It seems some things never change. Old man river keeps rolling, fish keep jumping and we keep our noses to the grind stone so the Joneses don't get in front of us. Trouble is, one day you look up and find nothing is the same.
I am over 50. I have pictures of my parents as children bundled up walking to school through snow. The pictures were taken in an area where my child grew up thinking it was a treat if the snow stuck for half a day.
The farm I was raised on had a stream that always flowed, at times flooded the farmland around it, and provided a reliable fishing hole. Now a dam upstream has changed it to a dry bed at times and never the place that provided the delightful fun I remember as a youngster.
I believe that politicians are generally good people. However, when they become surrounded by folks who have a reason to convince them to act in a way that serves the interest of those with much to be gained by government action, or at times inaction, they often forget the voices that may have touched their heart in an earlier day.
The efforts of the Soviet Union to divert water from the Aral Sea for irrigating cotton was to better its economy and help its citizens. It may have been helped for a time, but the result is that the fourth largest sea has lost two thirds of its surface area and the salinity of the remaining water has increased fourfold. The area is now an environmental catastrophe.
It happened within a lifetime. When people looked up, they found their children were sick from the now dusty lake bed and their way of life was gone. I can't picture the Soviet Union having town hall meetings to talk about the impact of diverting 90 percent of the water from the Aral Sea. If they had, and the fishermen spoke up, maybe some regulation would have protected those down stream.
Recently the Georgia Water Council put out a draft of a water policy plan for Georgia. Citizens are asked to study it and make comments. It would be nice if the draft they offer were not controversial, but with changing weather patterns and more frequent droughts, there are reasons to be concerned. Our politicians need to hear informed voices.
A community forum is being sponsored by independent civic organizations at Conyers' St. Simon's Episcopal Church Oct. 9 at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. Please attend.