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As a frequent paddler on the Mystic River, I have a great interest in its water quality (“Set 2024 goal for a swimmable Mystic”). One of the biggest problems facing the Mystic River is the euphemisms used to describe what goes in it, particularly after heavy rain. The Globe uses the term “raw effluence.” More to the point, it is untreated human waste. Someone tossing sticks in the river for their dog to chase could miss this point. I have heard government officials use stronger words.

The treatment of the Mystic River is absolutely primitive. Olympics aside, it needs to better serve the people who consider it a valuable urban resource.

Michael Ripple
Somerville