Opinion: Governor’s treatment of protester was condescending

Climate leader or liar, protester or protector? The public can decide which is more accurate.
Gov. Peter Shumlin has done it again. It’s bad enough when he does it in our state but he did it in Paris. He dismissed a protester, Aly Johnson-Kurts, with a verbal pat on her fanny. “OK, thank you. You’re beautiful. You’re eloquent. … Why don’t you run along back to Smith (referring to Smith College)?”
He really is a sexist, condescending boor. He needs to catch up with the rest of the world. You don’t speak to women that way and you don’t promote the largest build-out of a fossil fuel infrastructure while promoting our green, renewable energy state. But like he said, “Nobody noticed.”
Vermont’s neighbors, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York officials, have come out against these unnecessary pipelines. This type of infrastructure is archaic in light of all the new technologies we have available. To utilize fracked gas in the interim it can be supplied as it is now, by gas islands. Once we have embraced our goals in renewable energy and efficiency, we will not be burdened with a pipeline that threatens our properties and safety.
Vermont Gas issues an ultimatum to our state board, and they expect us all to be cowed by their demands. Jan. 8 or else! They set the date, let them live with the consequences or as they have done in the past, just change the costs and the deadlines. “On time and on budget” has been their cry in the face of all the setbacks, cost increases and mounting opposition as people educate themselves on the alternatives.
Now the gun is off the table and aimed at heads of property owners along the proposed route. Eminent domain proceedings should NOT be pursued. Vermont Gas says they cannot change the route but they have done so repeatedly when it suits them. I believe the latest request to the alignment was in November. When Vermont Gas requested this latest change they admitted they anticipate more change requests soon.
This whole project needs to be stopped now. Let’s not wait until the Jan. 8 deadline.
Mary Martin

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