Here’s a shocker for you. Iberdrola Renewables wants to hold a pair of meetings to present information on a proposed wind farm in Grafton and Windham.
Sorry, did you blink? That’s it. That’s the shocker.
According to VTDigger, Iberdrola has scheduled “technical workshops” in early April. And local opponents want to crash the party: they’re demanding panel discussions including “both sides of the debate.”
“We are shocked that they are proposing yet another meeting where free exchange of information and ideas will be not just discouraged but crudely squelched,” wrote Nancy Tips on behalf of Friends of Windham.
Do I have to say it? Any person, group, or entity that schedules an event has the right to set the agenda and name the participants. I may play a mean polka, but the Vermont Symphony doesn’t have to put me on its program. When Donald Trump had a rally in Burlington, he didn’t have to share the stage with Bernie Sanders.
This has nothing to do with the merits of wind energy, not that that will stop The Usual Suspects from posting Their Usual Comments in this space. This has entirely to do with Iberdrola’s right to host a meeting on its own terms. If wind opponents want to have meetings, they can go right ahead.
Oh wait, they do:
… the opposition groups have raised concerns about health, environmental, aesthetic and property value impacts, organizing a series of public meetings held periodically in Grafton.
And I’ll bet they don’t invite Iberdrola to present at their meetings.
Which is their right! The First Amendment protects your right to free speech; it doesn’t guarantee you access to any particular location at any particular date and time.
This is just plain ridiculous. Frankly, I don’t understand why it’s even a story. Why did VTDigger cover this as a real, substantive controversy? It is, well and truly, a nothing-burger.
Well, that’s not entirely true. It is an indication of just how overwrought wind opponents can be at times.