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Is it “Time to retire the Blue Angels”?

My answer, as one who was born and raised in Seattle and annually looks forward to Seafair and the Blue Angels, is an emphatic “no!”

The Blue Angels performance is a tribute to the Navy pilots who skillfully guide their planes through a choreographed set of maneuvers as well as a tribute to those who visualize and inspire the future of flight. Equally important is the fact that the Blue Angels are an inspiration to the many youngsters who line the shores of Lake Washington and dream of their future as pilots or astronauts.

What is the dollar limit on paying tribute to those who devote their minds and efforts to creating our aerodynamic future? Is there an amount that is too much to pay to inspire our youth who dream of the future and how they might help to shape that future? The benefits far outweigh the costs.

It is a travesty to describe the Blue Angels’ performance as a “blatant military ad campaign.” To do so is to belittle those who have made us more keenly aware of the many benefits that flow from their performance.

Neal J. Shulman, Mill Creek