Rider outraged at anti-ATV letter

Posted: Monday, August 06, 2007

I found Bob Hunsick's Aug. 1 letter to the editor insulting and infuriating. Does he realizes how ignorant his letter is? He makes so many generalizations about "these people" that I take offense to the entire letter.

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I am not a thief. My husband, myself and our two children (ages 12 and 8) ride all-terrain vehicles, and the statement that we may be "stealing what they want that we have not locked down" is outrageous. Hunsick is way out of line to suggest that we would steal anything just because we ride ATVs.

We enjoy riding as a family; we are not going to drink and drive out of the defined space, into his backyard, destroying his land. For our family and friends, this is a family sport. Drinking and destroying is not what we do.

Hunsick wrote, "everywhere these people go, they destroy, they are loud, they drink and they infringe on the peace and quiet of anyone within miles to burn fuel for no purpose other than their own reckless joy at everyone else's expense." Where do I start? ATV riding is a legitimate sport enjoyed worldwide. Other places have thousands of miles of trails for ATVs, but here in Juneau, we are not so lucky.

He claims ATVs are "using fuel and polluting our valley with fumes that fill only recreational needs." Every time Hunsick gets into his vehicle to go to the movies, a trailhead or many other numerous places, he is making a recreational trip for his own needs. You can bet his vehicle uses more fuel and adds more pollution than my "loud and wasteful vehicles." His argument about "this polluted, mindless use of resources for self-indulgent pleasure" makes no sense. Also, just for Hunsick's information, most of the ATVs running around town are four-stroke machines not two-strokes. Four-stroke machines are quieter and more emissions-friendly.

As for the statement that "none of them are homeowners paying upwards of $5,000 a year in property taxes," I wonder where he got his information. Does he think that because he pays more in taxes that he's a better person? My husband and I own a home, and while our property taxes are not that high, there are ATV owners whose property values meet and exceed his. What is he trying to say?

Pamela Nicholson

Auke Bay

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