Poor and minorities hardest hit (updated)

Thomas Lifson
The media narrative on the Cosco Busan oil spill into San Francisco Bay has largely focused on piteous waterfowl and incompetence on the part of the ship's crew, the Coast Guard, and the slow response of disaster relief efforts. But today, Jonathan Curiel of the San Francisco Chronicle gets down to business with the old stand-by of the media, the poor suffering disproportionately.
Two days after the Cosco Busan spilled 58,000 gallons of bunker fuel into San Francisco Bay, Khamnoi Vilaikam grabbed his fishing poles and drove to one of his favorite spots: a shoreline minutes away from his home in Richmond. [....]

Only when Vilaikam returned home that Friday night, and he and a son had eaten some of the fish they had caught, did Vilaikam watch a TV newscast and realize the bay was polluted by oil that killed birds, shut down beaches and prompted state officials to consider a ban on bay fishing.

Vilaikam, one of scores of subsistence fishers in the Bay Area, hasn't fished in the bay since.

"I got fish - striper bass," said Vilaikam. "The fish was OK. We come and eat. After that, they said it was an oil spill. After that, we didn't go."

Subsistence fishers - low-income anglers often from immigrant communities - rely on their catches to feed themselves and their family. On a single outing, Vilaikam can take in more than 30 fish - enough to last him, his wife and their three children for a week.
It is terrible that the Bay was polluted anew, and I admire immigrants like Mr. Vilaikam who work multiple jobs, minimize expenses, and are self-reliant. But feeding your family all week long from fish caught in San Francisco Bay is a very bad idea. The Bay is polluted, Cosco Busan aside. There is heavy metal pollution and chemical pollution. Richmond is home to one of the biggest refineries on the West Coast, and careful though Chevron must be, I cannot help but believe that Richmond is a poor spot from which to take fish destined for the family dinner table.

So why doesn't the Chron article mention these well-known facts? Mr. Vilaikam and his family may in fact be better off staying away from Bay-caught fish.

Update: It appears that Mr. Vilaikam has been ignoring catch limits.
In the Chronicle article, it states:

On a single outing, Vilaikam can take in more than 30 fish - enough to last him, his wife and their three children for a week. 
A limit of 2 per day is described here on California Department Fish and Game website.

It seems that we are all better off now that he has stopped feeding his family polluted fish.

The media narrative on the Cosco Busan oil spill into San Francisco Bay has largely focused on piteous waterfowl and incompetence on the part of the ship's crew, the Coast Guard, and the slow response of disaster relief efforts. But today, Jonathan Curiel of the San Francisco Chronicle gets down to business with the old stand-by of the media, the poor suffering disproportionately.
Two days after the Cosco Busan spilled 58,000 gallons of bunker fuel into San Francisco Bay, Khamnoi Vilaikam grabbed his fishing poles and drove to one of his favorite spots: a shoreline minutes away from his home in Richmond. [....]

Only when Vilaikam returned home that Friday night, and he and a son had eaten some of the fish they had caught, did Vilaikam watch a TV newscast and realize the bay was polluted by oil that killed birds, shut down beaches and prompted state officials to consider a ban on bay fishing.

Vilaikam, one of scores of subsistence fishers in the Bay Area, hasn't fished in the bay since.

"I got fish - striper bass," said Vilaikam. "The fish was OK. We come and eat. After that, they said it was an oil spill. After that, we didn't go."

Subsistence fishers - low-income anglers often from immigrant communities - rely on their catches to feed themselves and their family. On a single outing, Vilaikam can take in more than 30 fish - enough to last him, his wife and their three children for a week.
It is terrible that the Bay was polluted anew, and I admire immigrants like Mr. Vilaikam who work multiple jobs, minimize expenses, and are self-reliant. But feeding your family all week long from fish caught in San Francisco Bay is a very bad idea. The Bay is polluted, Cosco Busan aside. There is heavy metal pollution and chemical pollution. Richmond is home to one of the biggest refineries on the West Coast, and careful though Chevron must be, I cannot help but believe that Richmond is a poor spot from which to take fish destined for the family dinner table.

So why doesn't the Chron article mention these well-known facts? Mr. Vilaikam and his family may in fact be better off staying away from Bay-caught fish.

Update: It appears that Mr. Vilaikam has been ignoring catch limits.
In the Chronicle article, it states:

On a single outing, Vilaikam can take in more than 30 fish - enough to last him, his wife and their three children for a week. 
A limit of 2 per day is described here on California Department Fish and Game website.

It seems that we are all better off now that he has stopped feeding his family polluted fish.