Alvah Simon: Confessions of a Coral Crusher
Author: Alvah Simon
Source: Boating New Zealand
September 14, 2012
"I can't stand it anymore. I have to come clean. I am a mass murderer. There, I said it! I didn't mean it. I was young - in the wrong place at the wrong time. But none of that mattered to my thousands of innocent victims, destroyed, dead, gone forever.
It was Belize, 1976, home to the second longest barrier reef in the world. I was too anxious to see my first coral reef after reading Claire Booth Luce's description, "What fishes like flowers, what coral cathedrals that dwarf in their majesty even the grandest edifices of Man."
So I came, I saw, I crushed. It wasn't wanton destruction. I just didn't think when I let slip that anchor. Nevertheless, the effect was akin to the carpet-bombing of Dresden. If I was to return to the scene of the crime today, lo these many decades later, it would look much the same, for it can take centuries if not millennia to heal such an atrocity."
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