Posted on

You want to exert some influence? Join the club

You want to exert some influence? Join the club You want to exert some influence? Join the club

As many of you have heard, the DNR has announced that in-person hunters ed classes can resume starting July 13.

A lot of you want to hear that the volunteer instructors at Abbotsford Sportsmen’s Club have some great information to disseminate as to when this year’s course will be.

The instructors received just a bit more information about this than the press release you or someone you know saw. They received that information 24 hours after the press release you saw.

What the instructors are clear about is that there are more requirements than before. A detailed explanation of what can be expected and when was posted on the Abbotsford Sportsmen’s Club group Facebook page this past Sunday evening, and can be found there.

You can search and request inclusion on that page to see that information in Facebook. If you are on social media and you have a child that you want to take the course; or, if you hunt, fish, and even occasionally use the club’s range, you ought to join this Facebook page.

I’m going to take this a step further. If you have or had a child that took or you want to take the club’s Hunters Ed course; or you hunt, fish, trap and occasionally use the club’s range, you should strongly consider a club membership. Strong words, I know, but as I get older, I tire of beating around the bush. Not that I’ve ever been known for that. I’m always the guy used to point out the elephant in the room.

If even half of us that hunt, fish, camp, trap, or shoot firearms or archery joined our respective national and local organizations, politicians and the media wouldn’t be attacking us all the time. They would listen and they would act, because they would know you care, and are likely receiving accurate information from your organization. Wolves would have been removed from the Endangered Species list by congressional action a long time ago and returned to our state’s management authority. The U.S. Forest Service wouldn’t be two decades behind in their forest management (logging). And habitat improvement projects would be getting done as they should. All of this would mean better, more enjoyable time afield for all of us. If you don’t think so, then consider one of the new kids on the block — Back Woods Hunters and Anglers. It started out west, and now it has chapters in every state. They fight mainly for access and protections to public lands in the United States — our lands, not the politicians or the government’s lands. They redirected the conversation and pointed out the elephant in the room.

Their membership cost exceeds that of PF, RGS, DU, DW, WTF, REMF, WU, etc. Yet they are the group with the expanding membership, garnering all the press; their message is resounding with the 40-andunder demographic who feels they will never own hunting land by deed themselves.

But they understand they collectively own a lot of public land they pay taxes to support, and are tired of single-use entities like ranchers, mining companies, land holding companies, or railroads denying access to that land because of archaic trespassing laws. Those entities often violate those laws themselves but the federal government doesn’t enforce them equally.

They are upset when politicians want to sell off public lands for cents on the dollar to campaign donors and use the disguise of increasing the tax roll or job creation. Ten years later, the tax rolls are the same and the jobs didn’t develop, but the bottom line and the campaign contributions both went up. They get listened to because of the membership that continues to grow. Recently they spearheaded the effort of getting private organizations to ensure the Great American Outdoors Act was passed by Congress. Every conservation organization jumped on, as did a lot of public figures like guys from Meateaters. But BHA has been on this from the beginning. They are left-leaning yet seem to get along with us deplorables. They get listened to because of numbers. Want to get listened to? join the club. Or at least get on the Facebook page.

Another new kid on the block to check out for ladies in the outdoors that like to or want to hunt, fish, hike, camp, etc is the Artemis Project. Check them and their podcast out. What’s a podcast? Come on, man, get on the Facebook page and take the first step.