Those of us who fought against the South Fox Island land swap saw first hand the alliance of Kool to Johnson (along with the Engler administration and the republican party, both of whom Johnson made substantial donations to). It was painfully obvious. And while we (the Traverse Group)were grateful that at least the southern tip of the island was protected, the loss of critical dunes, more than a mile of shoreline, and public land that will never be reclaimed was a major environmental (as well as emotional) blow. Johnson got what he wanted and Kool was a huge factor in the outcome.
The redeeming aspect of the whole experience? The coming together of more than 18 conservation, environmental, hunting and fishing groups and organizations, and of course the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians, for one simple, pure reason: the common love and respect of the island.
Traverse Group of the Sierra Club