Pat McGann is as red as they come. Trust me ... I used to work for him.
Far happier with a Beretta than a Blackberry, McGann has apparently converted to Greennecking™©® these days.
It bleeds off the pages of his stellar editorial in the latest Salmon & Steelhead Journal (clips below, click to enlarge), and it warms my heart.
PROPERTY RIGHTS vs. SALMON: Grumpy Uncle Dick killed 77,000 salmon and inspired the Northwest property rights lemming march. Here's what you can do to stop it.
I am earning a living right now ... on salmon.
There are thousands of people who feed their families on salmon. Some of them are commercial fishers and processors. More of them, like me, are members of the sportfishing industry. Although we fight like cats and dogs — and will as long as salmon are scarce — we do share that one vital common interest: no salmon, no livelihood, no new shoes for baby.
That's how I discovered I am one of those damned environmentalists.
True, I don't want to hug the fish or elk. I want to hunt them down and kill them and eat them. It's a bloody shade of green, yes ... but still, I know where my bread is buttered.
It took me a long time to figure that out, but I don't see how anyone who has anything at all — financial, emotional or spiritual — riding on salmon (or for that matter, elk or grouse or cutthroat) can be anything but dedicated to a healthy, productive natural environment.
My vested interest is in clean water, healthy habitat and thriving fish and game populations. If that makes me an environmentalist, so be it.
And that's why I am a sworn enemy — by mutual consent — of the egocentric freak show referred to as the "property rights" movement. Over the years I've wasted a lot of breath trying to convince these people that salmon are worth saving, worth enhancing and celebrating in their own right, worth a sacrifice, that their magic is something we can't afford to lose. I'm done digging in that dry hole. ...... "