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Boat parade puts pressure on already-polluted waters

By Staff | Sep 16, 2020

To the editor:

This letter is a further elaboration on the poor water quality recently described in recent media accounts. Jim Frock, the owner of Seven Seas Bait and Tackle in Matlacha, explained that the poor water quality is ruining the fishing and his business.

I live in northwest Cape Coral and I, too, have experienced this degradation of the fishing quality. In 2018, the Bonefish canal, connected to the north spreader canal, was filled with tarpon. For the past two years the tarpon and bait have been nonexistent.

Therefore, I find it perplexing as to why anyone would organize a Trump boat parade in Lee County coastal waters that are already struggling against the onslaught of manmade problems. I read that there were over 10,000 boats and there was also a video of the boats blasting across the water.

This was a very thoughtlessly planned and irresponsible event.

Imagine that you were out fishing and this parade blasted by you, ruining your day. Or, imagine being one of the few struggling remaining fish in the polluted and fishingpressured waters here.

I have experienced good and great fishing in many other places. It’s never been great here and it is getting worse. I spoke to a native Floridian at Lehr’s Tackle who has been guiding here for 30 years and he said it has become progressively worse and there are too many people who insist on keeping fish and too few fish in dirty waters.

Having a boat parade of this magnitude is not illegal, but it is irresponsible and very ill conceived.

Very little comprehensive thought was put into the planning of this boat parade. The very people who support Trump fail to recognize that he could care less about the environment and even less about the water quality in southwest Florida. But, in their false bravado of emulating our president, they join the boat parade, zipping across the water in boats while flying the flags as if they had any relevance to the degradation of our waters.

Ultimately, there are many causes contributing to the water degradation in southwest Florida, and organizations have been working feverishly to find and implement solutions. Organizing a Trump boat parade on overtaxed waters is only adding insult to injury, if you’re inclined to think of the ramifications.

Paul Kiefner

Cape Coral