From Falmouth, MA: Democracy and the Minority, Will Wind Turbine Victims Be the Recipients Of Our Country’s Underlying Principle of Protection?

“Will wind turbine victims be the recipients of our country’s underlying principle of protection? Will its spirit be realized by Town Meeting, or will neighbors just choose to look the other way?” writes Mark Cool in a local newspaper, of the boiling controversy in Falmouth Mass. over industrial wind turbine noise that is now affecting neighbors. Sounds familiar.
As a Falmouth taxpayer, I respect the town’s argument that budgetary cost liabilities must be components of consideration regarding the town’s wind turbine turmoil. I can appreciate the immediate and short-term fix—customized curtailing of turbine operations—that may positively affect energy savings and debt liabilities, as well as the existing sleep and health disruptions of residents.

However, the context of the situation is primarily about acceptable health conditions for affected residents. Therefore, it remains incumbent upon Town Hall to ensure that there is no foreseeable danger to, or risk of exposure upon, residents’ health.

It’s vital that Falmouth Town Meeting and elected officials uphold these fundamental principals of public health protection while more information becomes available. It’s of paramount community interest and expectation that all residents, all neighborhoods, and all villages of Falmouth be given this basic protection ‘equally.’

Fiduciary duties are at odds with community ethics and integrity in Falmouth. The community ‘metal’ is being tested. Democracy in the United States, however, is still based on majority rule ‘while protecting the rights of the minority.’

Will wind turbine victims be the recipients of our country’s underlying principle of protection? Will its spirit be realized by Town Meeting, or will neighbors just choose to look the other way?

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