Island scalloper David Berube is the latest Islander to show his support toward Ukraine, by painting his boat in the yellow and blue of the Ukrainian flag.
Other Islanders have shown their support for Ukraine in a variety of ways, such as spreading awareness about where to donate and gathering at Five Corners to wave pro-Ukraine signs.
Berube’s idea to paint his boat came from seeing various sites in the world, such as the Eiffel Tower in Paris, lighting up with yellow and blue colors to stand in solidarity with Ukraine. “That kind of inspired me to show my support in that way,” he said.
The boat’s visibility was not a factor in Berube’s plan to paint it. “I painted it on Friday [March 4],” Berube said. “It was too cold for scalloping … and it just dawned on me. Normally, the boat is all blue, so it wouldn’t take much to paint the other side yellow.”
How long the boat will remain this color is uncertain. “Maybe when Putin gets the hell out of Ukraine,” Berube said. “Really depends on what happens over there, I guess.”
For Berube, supporting Ukraine was not only a concern for that country, but the danger the invasion poses for the world’s democratic nations.
“This thing by Putin, it seems black and white, like good and bad,” Berube said. “There have been a lot of wars where I haven’t really supported either side because it’s, like civil wars, not as clear-cut. To me, [Russia’s invasion is] pretty clear-cut that it’s like democracy versus autocracy. Democracies around the world, they’re hurting, including the United States. I don’t like the way things are happening. If I can help another democratic country … I don’t know, but that’s where I’m coming from.”
There was a sense of helplessness, but Berube plans to send some money to nonprofits directly helping the Ukrainians, such as UNICEF. “At least that’s more than just painting my boat,” he said.
The boat is moored at North Wharf in Edgartown.