Letters to the Editor

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“Catfight” Writer Helps Share The Facts

The June/July Outdoors Unlimited was excellent … again. Ted Williams’ “Catfight” [Outdoors Unlimited, June/July 2013, p. 11] was a classic. It showed how important a knowledgeable outdoor writer can be in heading off silly, sappy, sentimental laws and regulations. I joined OWAA in 1960 sponsored by our former president and outdoor editor of the Des Moines Register. Our annual conference was at the posh Jackson Lake Lodge in Wyoming. We paid a whopping $6 a day for our rooms. CB Colby and Grits Gresham attended. I put together the team that hosted our 62nd conference in Des Moines in 1989, the Ding Darling conference. Like Ted Williams we have a feral cat problem — who hasn’t. As
usual, “the facts be damned.” To quote a thesis: “Recent studies in Iowa have found little or no evidence of population level effects; higher rates of mortality for bats.” But birds have a better lobby. Keep up the good work at our OWAA.
Jim Boyt, DesMoines, Iowa

Outdoor Writing Should Respect All Creatures

I have been an OWAA member for years, and I frequently wonder why I hang on. When I read Al Cambronne’s “What I learned writing an op-ed for a major newspaper” [Outdoors Unlimited, June/July 2013, p. 7], I really questioned my membership. The organization seems to treat fish as toys for people to play with, put on this planet for our enjoyment. Mr. Cambronne’s comment, “If you’re writing anything controversial, especially if it involves the death of an animal (even just a fish) … ” [emphasis mine] was an excellent example of the self-centered attitude of many OWAA members. Why are fishes’ lives any less important than the lives of other animals? Why did that phrase need to be in the article? If OWAA is more about catching fish for fun than respecting fish as living animals, count me out for renewing my membership.
Susan Jewell, wildlife biologist & environmental writer, Springfield, Va.

Feedback guidelines

Members are encouraged to write about issues and topics. The executive director and editor will decide whether opinions are appropriate for debate or if the comments promote a personal cause; if the “cause” is unrelated to OWAA’s mission and potentially damaging to the membership, the letter might not be printed. Word limit: 400. Longer letters will be returned for revision. Send letters to editor@owaa.org.

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