I found this on the Coal Free Bellingham website and wanted to share, as I think it captures the extraordinary qualities of this region well:
A Berry Land Preamble
by Rob Lewis
Whereas. . . dairy farms and the Little Cheerful, sweet juice in the berries simmering in the sun; the white crown of Baker, the heron speckled flats of Lummi the wild crescent shore called Cherry Point.
Here a nation local, planted in the routines of people graced by a place—and devoted to that place; pledged to land and each other; blessed by bay winds and snow geese; growing milk and blueberries and improvisational comedy; hosting epic games linking mountains to sea. And having a constitution; whereas We The People.
Recognizing. . . there is an abiding arithmetic, an accounting of the soul, daily tabulating the essentials: good air, thriving children sound atmoshphere, neighborly transaction. The human and natural, people and land all bound up together in complex equation amounting at last to a rare and exceptional sum: the good town Bellingham, the good place Whatcom.
But knowing. . . the seas that cradle our work are rising and the snowy peaks which encouraged our forebears are graying to dim the vision of our children.
For there is another arithmetic, chartered to profit and chained to greed, which comes here with coal trains and morbid math: “sell us your soul’s negation for increased tax revenue and 218 permanent jobs. You are recalculated now; your worth is to be a corridor for coal. Put aside your verdant vision. Our coal trains must pass.
And decades hence, when we’ve hauled our last load then you can have your vision back, then we will go.’
We reply. . . by lacing boots and printing signs, gathering voice and excavating rights:
Here a nation local, planted in place, Bound up in land and sea and the work of people Linking thriving children and the white crown of Baker Pledged to epic games and constitution; We The People Of this verdant place, this rare and exceptional sum