Well I fired off a Letter to the Editor about the article. NOt mad at the paper ... it focused on these little petty, whiners who live near the airport.
Here it is:
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"Snobsdale" shows it's true colors
The residents of Scottsdale should be ashamed of themselves.
The recent article "Fighter Jet Refueling Stops Cause Uproar in Scottsdale (T. Ropp, 9/22/03)" really rubbed a lot of people the wrong way.
Not the people you think. And certainly not because of the jets themselves, but rather because of the ignorance and ostentatiousness that seems to run rampant in the northeast corner of the Phoenix Metro area.
As a pilot I - and many of the pilots I know, including military pilots - find the attitudes expressed in the article, and the commonly known attitude of Scottsdale residents about Scottsdale Municipal Airport (SDL) in general, down right disgusting and appalling.
For years now local residents have complained about noise from SDL. However, they seem to easily forget the fact the airport was there long before any of those very residents who are complaining even new Scottsdale existed, let alone moved in. Look at aerial photographs of the site from the '40s and the surrounding area is nothing but barren desert for miles with one lone, dirt road leading away from the airport to the southwest.
Even with this fact in mind, the airport and the aviation community has been more than accommodating by way of incorporating noise abatement procedures, recommended curfews and even installing a 1-800 phone number to which noise complaints can be made.
Yet, this is still not enough.
Calls for outright closure and, more commonly, even greater restrictions on airport operations are made on a nearly daily basis. Community action groups have been formed. And now, many of the residents, and city council members, have the outright gall to complain about "fighter jets" - the very jets that are used to keep this country safe, secure and stable.
It's because this nation is safe, secure and stable that the residents of Scottsdale have been able to amass the wealth they now posses. And it's that very wealth which affords them the opportunity to even live in Scottsdale in the first place.
Yet the issue is deeper than the patriotism issue - there is an economic issue.
SDL and the surrounding airpark is, by several different accounts, the single largest economic engine in Scottsdale. If SDL were to be shut down or crippled by excessive noise limitations the economic engine that is SDL would shrivel and die.
If that engine were to shrivel and die the tax revenue it generates would need to be replaced somehow, someway. It doesn't take a genius - or even someone of average intelligence - long to figure that the replacement vehicle for that lost revenue could very easily be in the form of property tax.
Million dollar and multi-million dollar homes make nice, fat targets for the tax collector.
How fast would those who complain about noise switch to complaining about taxes?
In the end it comes down to an issue of tolerance. The aviation community has been more than tolerant of these petty, complaining neighbors. But I think it's far past time that SDL and the pilots it serves to stand up and take back our airport and put these obnoxious spoiled busybodies in their place.
After all, we were here first.
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