10 who tell the oil spill story
From the white sand of Florida to the weather-beaten docks of Louisiana, the oil spill in the Gulf has had a profound impact on those who live on the water, by the water and for the water. Here are 10 telling quotes from those affected.
“We’re afraid to eat the fish. We’ve sworn off seafood. Today we’re getting steaks. Thank God cows don’t grow in the Gulf.” — Jan Young, of Foley, Ala.
A charter fisherman
“They put us out of business, and now they’re forcing us into slave labor.” — Charter fisherman Mike Ellis, of Harvey, La.
“We live in BP of America, instead of the United States of America.” — Dolores Pittman, of nearby Gulf Breeze, Fla.
A business owner
“There’s a good chance it’ll put bait and tackle shops out of business. I’ve got two kids in diapers. Not a good thing.” — Vick Mitchell, owner of Gulf Breeze Bait and Tackle, in Gulf Breeze, Fla.
A commercial fisherman
“I’m relying on handouts from BP. I’d like to get out on the water and work for it.” — Third-generation commercial fisherman Ed Wall, based out of Pensacola, Fla.
“There have been blobs washing up all my life. That’s part of the hazard of living along the Gulf.” — Bobby Skinner, a New Orleans native and musician
A cleanup volunteer
“I hope that my child can get in the water without me being afraid he’ll get sick. I hope I can cook shrimp gumbo again.” — Amanda Bacon, Point Clear, Ala.
“We’ve had a hard time finding anywhere to volunteer to help with the birds. We don’t want to go through BP. We see how their work ethic is.” — Master naturalist Mary Wedlake, Fort Myers, Fla.
A bait shop manager
“The news media will do us more damage in two seconds than the oil will in 20 years. Don’t kill me before it’s time.” — Darrell Duke, manager at Bait and Tackle, in Gulf Breeze, Fla.
“To tell you the truth, it affects me deeply. It hurts. It really does. It just affected me in such a way, I thought back, well my grandchildren aren’t going to be able to enjoy it like I was able to enjoy it.” — Michael Faircloth, lifelong Pensacola, Fla., resident