To The Daily Sun,
"Do you see over yonder friend Sancho, thirty or forty hulking giants?" I intend to do battle with them and slay them." "Take care cried Sancho, those over there are not giants but windmills.....they turn the millstone."
The idiom "tilting at windmills" comes from the English and means "attacking imaginary enemies" and I fear that these enemies still exist in the Lakes Region area. I have come to love those "giants" seen from Tenney Mountain Highway and no, they are not attached to millstones like the ones Don Quixote attacked but nevertheless they continue to serve a useful purpose — in this case creating energy with a very small carbon footprint.
I even get concerned when a few of them are not turning and it doesn't matter to me if they are producing energy for us or someone else. Many reasons have been expressed in these columns why people are still tilting at these wonderful inventions. Sound, sight, light flicker, health and the general impact on the environment. Try as I may, I can't find any credible evidence for any of them as long as they remain at least eight hundred and fifty meters away from humans.
Nothing is perfect and windmills do kill a few birds but when you consider fossil fuel alternatives, transmission lines, building windows, pesticide use, domestic and feral cats, it's a drop in the bucket.
Of course beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder. I for one find them pleasant to look at. It's reassuring to know that nature can be harnessed for our benefit instead of being its victim. As for people who spend half their year on the lakes and don't want their property values to go down—my sympathy bucket is pretty empty at the moment.
If you want or need a contrast, just drive down Highland St. towards Hannaford and look to your left. With all those double telephone poles and wires it looks like earth after all the rich people have gone to Elysium — and not one complaint! One wonders where all the impetus comes from when action is needed. Perhaps real estate and lake-front developers, golf course owners, tourist industry and even environmentalists on occasion? The rest is easy. If you grew up with Gene Autry you'll know how easy it is for the bad guys to stir up a town and form a lynch mob. Too bad community action was absent when Plymouth was being turned into the inner workings of a pin ball machine.