Second only to the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame was the most iconic structure in France. The French people, and the philanthropists rallying to rebuild it, are not responding to the loss of a building; they are responding to the loss of their cultural pride and identity.
When seeking a parallel in Washington state, what comes to mind after the Space Needle, our Eiffel Tower?
One need look no further than the natural beauty of our many waterways and the animals that inhabit them to conclude that our state identity, our culture, rests and manifests in regional wildlife such as salmon and Orcas. Their demise, made poignant with the 17-day carriage of her dead calf by Orca mother J35, is most directly tied to food scarcity (according to CNN, Sat Aug 11, 2018). Through processes such as overfishing, man-made obstacles and interferences, and unsustainable transportation and agricultural practices, we are responsible for the perilous circumstances and grave danger in which both species exist.
Will we respond to the call to restore our cultural identity in Washington state as the French committed to restoring theirs? Will we show up with our dollars, our changed habits and our volunteer hours to turn the tide on survival?
Shoreline just made this commitment. It’s our turn Edmonds. Let’s start by flooding the Edmonds Parks Department with tax-deductible checks (memo “Marsh Restoration Fund-017) to expedite the daylighting of Willow Creek, a project scientists foresee making a significant impact on the salmon population. And when you are making your choices about weed control and car washing this weekend, think about the salmon living in the waters that receive runoff from your yard.
Our Notre Dame is burning.
Will you choose to rebuild?