Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Life rings and rednecks

Two articles in the local bird cage liner caught my attention this morning. The first was a followup on the Edmund Fitzgerald life ring story. Apparently the ring was a cabin decoration that had been made to commemorate the sinking of the Fitz and not an attempt to deceive anyone. Seemed very odd that no one would have found this thing for 32 years and then all of a sudden it turns up on the Keewenaw.

The second story is a disturbing one about two boat loads of rednecks harassing canoe campers on Basswood Lake in the BWCA wildereness. One of the big debates when the Boundary Waters Canoe Area was formed was which lakes could still have motors and how large those motors could be. I've said before that the only people who readily embrace change are babies with full diapers. Most Ely and area residents hated the idea that they could no longer use outboards on the lakes that they and their parents and grandparents had been using for years. In an earlier post I advocated dialogue and a 'why can't we just get along?' attitude between we kayakers and canoeists and the sailors and power boaters that we share the water with. I still strongly believe that but something tells me that these Neanderthals, who are a few decades behind the times in the BWCA debate, just wouldn't respond to that sort of reasoning. It will be very interesting to see how the local courts treat these knuckleheads. In the meantime, keep up the dialogue with our fellow water aficionados and spend a few bucks in these areas that we love to paddle in.

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