There are some words that are hard to take back. During a Zoom teleconferenced call last month, Lynn Canal Conservation’s vice president uttered such words — on a hot microphone.
LCC’s Eric Holle said he’d “like to kill Liz Cornejo.” Cornejo was, until April, an employee of and consultant to the owner of a mining claim south of the Haines highway near the historic Porcupine placer gold camp.
The comment came during a panel discussion about heliskiing operations in the area, another hotly contested subject. According to the local newspaper, there was a momentary pause after the “kill” comment, some uncomfortable laughter, and someone said, “There’s the truth.”
Such is the state of public discourse in the 21st Century. Those who advocate for resource development and jobs do so at their own peril as those on the Left become more emboldened.
The publisher of the local newspaper in Haines brushed it off, and in an editorial he neither excused the Holle statement nor supported Holle’s critics, who called for him to resign from the Lyn Canal Conservation Council. He told the community to calm down and he accused Holle’s critics of being hyperbolic.
As for Cornejo, she hired an attorney who sent a stern letter to Holle, saying what he had said amounted to “hate speech.”
Holle has since apologized in response to a note he had received from Mayor Doug Olerud about the incident. He said he didn’t intend anyone to hear what he had said and had merely flubbed the “mute” button during the call. And he intends to issue an apology to Cornejo.
The editorial from the Chilkat Valley News: