To the editor: Peter Gorman’s well-documented article (“Sacrificed to Shale,” Oct. 14, 2009) is a jaw-dropping report. You need a pair of asbestos gloves just to read it.
It’s incredible that evidence – showing that pollutants apparently being released from wells, pipelines, and compressor stations are killing vegetation and livestock – barely registers as something that calls for corrective action, legislatively or otherwise.
These gas companies purchase your mineral rights with as little payment as possible or simply take it by eminent domain. With a stroke of a pen, it’s theirs! Even though the squeaky wheel usually gets the grease, that adage hasn’t seemed to work for the DISH folks yet. The EPA, the Texas Legislature, even Congress could change the standard that allows these modern-day bandits to take everything away from people. It is likely that a lot of these “authority figures” have a vested interest in a few wells themselves – a regular parade of greed. They put up 11 compressor stations, with their pollution and their cacophony of sound to get everyone out of DISH. Then these gas companies could take over the town like the Mafia.
The list of toxins Gorman wrote about would never be tolerated in a larger town. If children die as a result of this “toxic soup,” maybe Child Protective Services could lodge a complaint, since the state environmental agency has been so lackadaisical in its enforcement.
In the meantime we can commiserate with the DISH folks and hope Gorman’s exposé spawns a resolution.
The Price of Print
To the editor: Regarding Gwynne Dyer’s guest column (“Losing (Climate) Control,” Oct. 7, 2009): Gee, those things sound terrible ! How can Fort Worth Weekly in good conscience continue to cut down trees, run energy-intensive printing equipment, and drive trucks all over town to deliver papers that will eventually end up in landfills if all these horrible things Dyer writes about are true?
Editor’s response: We do it in the same way and for the same reasons that we ran Ron Bridges’ guest column (“Compassionate Paying,” July 15, 2009) and his letter.
Welcome to the Weekly
To the editor: I’ve lived in Fort Worth for 39 years, but until a couple of weeks ago, when I found a copy of your paper left on a table in the restaurant in the Horton building where I office, I had never seen a copy of Fort Worth Weekly. Now that I have, I am compelled to say – bravo.
Where else would I have found such a moving and thorough story as “Worth the Paper They’re Written On” (Oct. 7, 2009)? Nowhere! Why? Because print journalism is shrinking like real estate valuation but without real estate’s probability of eventual rebound.
I was a reporter for the now-expired Rocky Mountain News. How lucky the day when I retired from the Marines after World War II and said “no” to the News‘ offer of my old job back at $60 a week. I then got luckier when I went to work for Boston’s RadioShack Corp., which Tandy Corp. acquired in 1963 and let it grow and profit. Still, after my retirement there, on becoming an author, I did return to the words-on-paper business after all. With books going electronic and everybody blogging and tweeting, thorough, entertaining, and educational prose on paper is perhaps terminally threatened.
My hope is that your rag will be the exception, along with The New York Times and Wall Street Journal, and that we truly news-seeking readers will continue to get the meat of the story instead of merely the unbalanced, abbreviated and cosmeticized pelt.
Katie Worsham is director of the Office of Community Planning and Development in the Fort Worth regional office of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Her title was incorrect in the Oct. 21 cover story, “Falling Down, Getting Back Up.” Fort Worth Weekly regrets the error.