Wow, seems we’ve hit a nerve with out last strip! And to pour some more oil into the fire, we’ve scheduled another anti airport activist related strip for today!

Let us point out that we do not agree with Chuck’s proposed tactics in this case, and that we are all for peace, love and understanding, like Sally. It’s interesting to see how entrenched the camps are in this matter. I have to be honest that I am somewhere in the middle on this.

Do I enjoy the sound of a passing Cessna? Sure! But I can understand that to some people, mainly those who have no fascination for flying, it’s the equivalent to a moped in the sky. And while I can appreciate the awesomeness of an airliner passing over me on final approach, I wouldn’t want to have to listen to that noise all day long in my house or garden.

One difference between America and Europe is that in Europe most towns have been there way before the airports and that it’s much more densely populated in general. A lot of families live in places way longer than even the advent of aviation. But does being somewhere first and the fact that you’re inconvenienced give you the right to demand the shutdown of an airport? By the same logic you could demand highways and railways to be shut down. Or in the place where I live, a lot of new apartments were built on one side, and a connecting street on the other side. Do I have the right to demand people to move out, because the traffic is annoying to me? And it is annoying, especially the mopeds.

It’s not a black and white issue. We aviation enthusiasts need to recognize that not all airports were there first, that, although in some cases it’s blatantly obvious that there’s a different agenda at play or that people moved next to the airport knowingly, there are cases where it’s the other way around and that there is a limit to the noise you can take before it starts adversely affecting your health. The other side has to recognize that not all airports are alike and that general aviation is already a dying field, because once an aiport is shut down, it stays shut down. The only airports that seem to grow are the big hubs, and those are the ones with the really noisy planes.

That’s why I cited the example of the airport in my home town. It really worked out fine for all sides and it shows that when you talk to each other, and, as an airport, take the grievances of the local residents seriously, and when both sides are willing to compromise, that we can all live peacefully side by side.