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Voting in Windham

Our town, Windham, plans to vote on the company formerly known as Iberdrola’s offer to place wind turbines here, and we’re so excited! They’ve promised to go away and leave us alone if a majority of ballots cast on Nov. 8 say “no.”

But wait – we have learned from other communities touched by Iberdrola that they might break their promise and refuse to honor a vote! An oft-cited reason is “voter intimidation,” apparently based on secret parameters and data.

Well, we want to head off this possibility. So today, we are issuing a detailed apology to all you intimidated pro-wind Windham voters. We make a clean breast of our intimidating behavior and beg your forgiveness. That way, we figure Iberdrola will have to find a different excuse for not honoring the vote.

To this end, we have categorized our intimidating behavior into three groups, with apologies for each.

1. Scary meetings. The basis for widespread opposition to Iberdrola’s wind turbines has been a 10-year effort by our town leadership to study the ecology and settlement patterns of our region, and to codify their findings in our Town Plan, which prohibits industrial wind in Windham. We apologize for the scariness of Planning Commission meetings, beginning with the fact that they were all “warned,” which is inherently scary (think “I’m warning you, buster”), and this fact might explain why Windham’s pro-wind voters rarely attended these meetings in order to exert their influence in the process. If a pro-wind voter had gotten up the nerve to peek in a window during these meetings, he or she would have seen a group of serious people with pointy objects in their hands. If we had seen you, intimidated pro-wind voter, we would have invited you in and explained that the pointy objects were ballpoint pens. Alas, we didn’t see you because you were prostrate in the flowerbed, hand over pounding heart.

2. Pointy objects. It’s true that the “No Turbines” signs in our yards are fixed into little frames with pointy legs, so that we can push these legs into the ground. However, we recognize your fear that we mean to poke you with these pointy legs, and we apologize for any misunderstanding. We would further like to apologize to all of you who keep stealing these signs and leaving them, pointy legs exposed, by the side of the road where they are even more intimidating. And further, we want to especially apologize to the one of you who placed a note on the windshield of a car where there was a “No Turbines” sign. In that note, in which you referred oddly to procreation, micturation and defecation, you also proposed that you had trained your gun on the family, intending apparently to shoot them for having pointy objects on their lawn. We would like to apologize to you, but first you have to put down your gun.

3. Verbal abuse. We take responsibility for and apologize for our abusive language in the grocery store. When we said “Hot enough for you?” you doubtless recognized that we meant: “If you vote for those wind turbines, we’re gonna make it hot for you!” And when we said, “I love your shoes!” you realized we meant, “If you vote for those turbines, you’ll never see those shoes again!” And, of course, in parting, we should never have said “Catch you later!” which showed our intent to grab you and beat you.

We hope that you will accept our apology for our intimidating behavior, and let Iberdrola know we didn’t mean it. It might be the only way for our town to get fair treatment after the upcoming vote.

Nancy Tips is a resident of Windham.