photo chiaraSome people are just pathetic. Some people will do just about anything to be noticed. Some wear provocative clothing. Some dye their hair blue. Some get lots of tattoos. Some sit in trees protesting the go ahead of an already-approved building project.

Such is the case of Chiara D’Angelou, who decided she didn’t have anything else to do and decided to trespass and climbed more than 60 feet up a Douglas fir protesting a 72,000 sq. foot mall being planned by Visconsi Companies, which has already been approved by the City Council after years of meetings, and more meetings, public hearings and more public hearings, studies and more studies, and articles and more articles being written in the local newspaper.

She had the opportunity to attend any number of hearings about the project. Whether she did or not, I don’t know. But after the project was approved and it was a done deal, that wasn’t good enough for Miss D’Angelou. She decided to trespass on the property.

Chiara’s climb came after a “vigil” Saturday night of about 80 people who stood around with signs and candles to express their continued opposition to “the destruction of the land for commercial purposes.”

She had food, water, books, a guitar, a sleeping bag, a cell phone and solar charger to keep her occupied — all I’m sure were hand-made by her and not purchased at a mall.  Does she object to all malls or does she only object to malls on the Island — taking the typical NIMBY position.

The Visconsi group was nice enough and gave her until 4 p.m. on Tuesday to get off the property. She finally came down from her soapbox sometime Tuesday evening. If it were my land, I would’ve asked the police to arrest her immediately. But that’s just me.

I’ve read comments from people that said they don’t want the mall here because it will be too much competition for existing merchants. Well, excuse me, but don’t we live in the United States, founded on “capitalism” — an economic system in which competition is not only good but encouraged? Some have even called for a boycott of the new stores for “at least seven years.” So what happens after seven years?

As far as I’m concerned, competition is good. Variety is even better. If you don’t want to shop at the new mall, don’t shop there. Whether these protesters like it or not, the mall is coming. Whether the Visconsi group has made a good decision to build here, is yet to be seen. And that’s the way it should be. If people won’t shop there, then the Visconsi group will have made a very bad judgment call. If it succeeds, I say “fantastic.”

I don’t get it, but if you do, God bless you.


Tags: , , , ,