Thursday, April 19, 2007

Settle Down

There was a Letter to the Editor published in the Marianas Variety today that attacks the politicians that have helped Beautify CNMI! in the last year. The writer accuses them of planting infertile seeds and painting over a sinking ship, when they should be working on "real" solutions.

I respectfully have to disagree with the writer.

The work that Beautify CNMI! does is a low cost, high yield investment in the CNMI's future. First, we improve our product (Saipan, Tinian, and Rota) by sprucing up our islands, cleaning up the garbage, fixing old tourist attractions, removing grafitti, and generally making the islands look better.

Homeboy suggests we have inmates do this work. I recruited 3000+ volunteers to clean up the island on a single day back in October and I've led anywhere between 3-6 cleanups per weekend ever since and guess what? This island is still a mess!

Late last year I led some high schools students and community volunteers on a cleanup of an illegal dumpsite. We removed over 20,000 lbs of illegally dumped household trash. Guess what the place looks like now?

Koblerville Dump SiteTrashed again! If this place was cleaned up it could be an historical tourist site, like the North Field in Tinian. Can you really blame the Legislature for Koblerville residents being too lazy to bring their trash to the transfer station? I don't think so.

< / rant >

On another note...

The 50 writers and bloggers of the We Love Saipan Network and the six different Beautify CNMI! websites published in three different languages then promote our islands to tourists, professionals, and retirees. We were able to put this together for $9 per year (we're nearing the start of our second year; we're going to have to come up with that $9 again).

I've had people tell me that these blogs were the deciding factor in their move to Saipan. Those people are now providing professional services, and spending their salary on rent, utilities, services and paying taxes.

Finally and most importantly, we inspire the next generation to do better than their parents. The kids that we are mentoring are going to be great leaders. I predict that many of these young leaders will run for office in their twenties.

And finally...

Just so that you don't think that this blog is too politcal, here's a video of Coach Ziggy doing the Ocho Ocho Dance:

Ziggs went back to Ohio early yesterday morning. That means that he can't make me do pushups for posting this video. We're gonna miss you, Ziggs!


Angry Sicilian said...

This reads like I hoped The Audacity of Hope would have.

Keep up the good work Angelo. I'll make it out to the island some day.

Jeffrey C. Turbitt said...

It is really disturbing that people would do that and take so little pride in themselves and their community.

As far as that guy complaining about Beautify CNMI, it is too stupid to merit comment.

Marianas Life said...

has johannes gotten off his ass and done anything? i don't disagree with his concern over lack of effort to fix the problems but seriously! blaming the lack of solutions on elected leaders being leaders and walkin the talk to make this island better in simple day to day ways is ridiculous. perhaps he can be left in charge of cleaning up koblerville. I say kudos to Cinta and Manny who use their discretionary funds for something truly beneficial. Besides, most the clean ups are on weekends anyway, which would be their day off. duh!!!! Other benefit you forgot to mention is ones physical and emotional health. Think of the calories people burn as the pick up trash.

Rick MacPherson said...

if crazy complaints like you describe continue, let me know, 'cause i've got my checkbook ready to write a whole bunch of $9.00 checks... keep up the great work... you are definely nor rearranging deck chairs on the titanic... i agree that you are planting seeds for the next generation... we just have to hang in there long enough to remove our own generations "weeds"...

Pura Vida Fords said...

Speaking of the Audacity of Hope, did it ever arrive? Mom

The Saipan Blogger said...

It did arrive! I already read it! Didn't get interesting until the last chapter.

Anonymous said...

Not withstanding your noble volunteer efforts with Beautify CNMI, you appear to have a grandiose perspective on your role in a community volunteer organization.

For instance,

"I recruited 3000+ volunteers to..."

"I've led anywhere between 3-6 cleanups per weekend ..."

"Late last year I led some high schools students..."

Please take this as constructive critism - Beautify CNMI! is a "we" organization, not something that evolves around you. Relax.

The Saipan Blogger said...

Thank you for reading my blog.

Since we're quoting:

"a grandiose perspective on your role in a community volunteer organization."

I don't think that grandiose and community volunteer organization belong in the same sentence, especailly on an island the size of Saipan, but thank you for your criticism.

I stand by my statements. I am the volunteer coordinator for this campaign (it is not an organization).

BoReGo said...

Few days ago, I got a long distance call from an interested teacher in Minnesota. I asked her to look at the school blog to gauge our "personality" and she said it was already on her favorites!
As for the BeautifyCNMI criticisms: real solutions don't happen sitting in your leather swing-back chair. Your efforts spurred the action of so many other agencies, companies, schools and private citizens. The island's never looked so beautiful and that's the greatest living brochure we can offer. Keep up the great job!

Jeffrey C. Turbitt said...

People who criticize anonymously are wusses. If you have something to say, put your name to it and stand by it. Note incidentally that almost all comments on Island Crusader are anonymous. This place is the king of wimpy anonymous comments.

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