Wednesday, December 06, 2006

"They Shall be Apportioned for Foxes"


This is McClellanville, SC, a sentimental place in the Lowcountry heart. Anyone who gives a tinker's dam (not damn) about the survival of coastal life as we have known it cares about McClellanville. It is "organic" not in the cute fashionable sense of the word, but as a literal organ in the body of the Lowcountry. McClellanville is no appendix, no disposable body part, but as essential as the liver or lungs. It is part heart and part mind of the Lowcountry.

We are parked before a brace of shrimp trawlers which are still living, breathing members of what is still a genuine fishing village. They are the means by which many make their living and not the tourist trap props which such vessels will surely become in our more exploited corridors. This could become a marina village, a gated community which is with certainty more than a glint in some developer's eye at this moment. The lust for this land may well be affecting more than the developer's eye.

Development of our coast is a progressive disease which is migrating north from Mt. Pleasant, a diseased and now dead limb of the Lowcountry, a total wreckage of coastal ambiance. Any dullard who does not yet know how to prostitute a delightful vibrant village into petty cash may come to Mt. Pleasant and learn from the remaining buzzards who are pimping the last vestige of virtue out of this patch of fallen grace.

Believe in the Domino Theory. It is the way development goes metastatic from a few small tumors in these little communities. Just a several miles south of here, Awendaw has just opened its doors wide to developers and begun the end of life as they knew it. With a rag tag municipal government and a gaggle of gullible citizens who are soon to be taxed off of their land, developers had little trouble there. Now, McClellanville is within reach of predatory development.

The Charleston paper says that we can expect 400 new homes in McClellanville. Will some of them land where we are parked? This will improve life like dropping an anvil into a sinking Jon boat. It should not happen. We should learn the names and numbers behind this farce.

In these frustrating moments when we attempt to digest the ransacking of our native coast, we feel that if there is Divine justice in this world, then these developers and those who take it under the table to aid and abet them should be apportioned for foxes and sent into the infernal regions. In the near future when you tell someone to go to hell around here they won't have to move in inch to comply.


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