GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

Letters/My View

April 15, 2013

Letter: Dogtown wasn't meant to go digital

To the editor:

Last week, there were two articles in the Times (Tuesday, April 9, Friday, April 12) about a dedicated and selfless Boy Scout who installed markers in Dogtown as part of his Digital Dogtown project for becoming an Eagle Scout.

At first, I was shocked that a good work had been so quickly targeted by vandals. Motherhood, baseball, apple pie. Who could want to destroy such a project?

But then I realized that this might not be a simple case of vandalism and wayward teenagers. So I am writing to suggest another side to the story.

Dogtown is a wilderness in our back yard. We all praise and cherish it. I have memories of 40 years ago when I used to await the full moons of winter so I could ski for five hours on my hickory cross country skis in Dogtown with the only light of the moon, and six inches of untouched powder snow sparkling under my skis. It was a silent, stunning and ecstatic experience.

It is so rare to have such beautiful land within walking distance, a place to immerse yourself in nature, away from the getting and spending of the daily world. Dogtown is Cape Ann’s Walden Pond, as yet unspoiled.

So despite good intentions, someone has innocently laid claim to this land. Stakes have been driven. Cell phones are welcomed. Signs will be needed. Overnight, Dogtown has become a tourist attraction.

In the quiet seaside village of Rockport, if you have an extra $1,000, you can buy a bench, and put your name on it, and plant it forever on town land with a $5 million view of the ocean. So why not civilize Dogtown?

The real value of Digital Dogtown, however, is that it reminds us what an incredible place Dogtown really is — not to be advertised, not to be monetized, not to be synthesized.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Letters/My View

NDN Video
GMA: Dog passes out from excitment to see owner Robin Wright Can Dance! (WATCH) She's Back! See Paris Hilton's New Carl's Jr. Ad Morgan Freeman Sucks Down Helium on 'Tonight Show' Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Big Weekend For Atlanta Braves In Cooperstown - @TheBuzzeronFox Chapter Two: Becoming a first-time director What's Got Jack Black Freaking Out at Comic-Con? Doctors Remove 232 Teeth From Teen's Mouth Bradley Cooper Explains His Voice in 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Deja vu: Another NYPD officer choke-holding a suspect 'Fifty Shades of Grey': Watch the Super Sexy First Trailer Now! Reports: Ravens RB Ray Rice Suspended For 1st 2 Games Of The Season Air Algerie plane with 119 on board missing over Mali Diamond Stone, Malik Newman, Josh Jackson and others showcase talent Free Arturo - The World's Saddest Polar Bear A Look Back at Batman On Film Through The Years LeBron James -- Dropped $2k On Cupcake Apology ... Proceeds To Benefit Charity Snoop Dogg Says He Smoked Weed at the White House