Well folks, daylight savings time is upon us once again and already Christmas commercials begin to fill the airwaves. Shorter days and cooler waters bring the Drum and Stripers we think about all year, and the days of shorts and t-shirts become few. And now that the Anglers Club Tournament is over, the Islands will begin their passage to a turtles pace while we still seek gifts from the sea along these narrow ribbons of sand.
And we wait to see what befalls us this winter as the attempt at destroying the legacy, culture, and future of this magnificent Seashore continues.
The shocking part of it all, is that all of the things I mention above have been consistent for years. Winter I understand and expect, but this incessant drive to rob us of these beaches is not only amazing, but well beyond irritating.
I was cutting and salting baits for the tourney the other day and during a break I came upon a post on facebook from the Greystone Project which took my ire at those that seek to wreak havoc upon us to an entirely new level.
We've all seen hypocrisy before but Audubon, or Auto-ban if you prefer, has now redefined the term. Were there a Nobel Prize for Hypocrisy they would surely prevail. And knowing their thirst for money, would pursue.
The first time I was floored by their hypocrisy was when I watched a 60 Minutes segment by Leslie Stahl that talked about Caspian Terns that were breeding on a dredge island in the Snake River. This "species of least concern" was/is decimating the U.S. taxpayer funded, hatchery raised, micro-chip implanted, endangered Salmon. The birds eat so many of these salmon that USFWS has employees rake through the bird poop on the island to recover as many microchips as they can.
USFWS decided to trap and relocate the birds but Audubon sued to stop them and prevailed.
They sued so that a non threatened, non endangered bird that breeds worldwide, can continue to decimate an endangered species.
This year takes the cake.
We all know how Audubon has sold their property in Corolla. You know, the one they were supposed to preserve as primitive wilderness in perpetuity and never paid taxes on. And they sell it for high density development to include hundreds of retail outlets..
But at the same time they reject the proposed seven mile bridge in Currituck claiming that it will bring to much development to the very same place they sold their property, specifically for high density development.
They also complain about potential storm water run-off harming wildlife in the sound on a new Currituck bridge while at the same time advocating a 17 mile span to get from Bodie to Hatteras Island; all the while opposing the 3ish mile short bridge option all together and helping to put human lives at risk though we hear nothing about storm water run-off and harm to wildlife on that monster span.
Now these folks have upped the ante!
The Greystone Project post that sent me into tantrums and caused me to swear like a sailor for about fifteen minutes marked yet another milestone in the definition of the term hypocrisy.
Now Audubon wants to sell oil and gas leases in their privately owned "nature preserve" where they openly state that 36 species of bird are in decline. But as we've seen before, when it comes to nature vs. profit, in this case, potentially huge profit, Audubon is going for the cash and nature takes a hike.
And this is happening while Defenders of Wildlife and the Southern Environmental Law Center are suing BP for the gulf oil spill.
These are the people that want us off these beaches even though they cannot show that we impact wildlife and ignore the USFWS "Finding Of No Significant Impact" issued in 2007.
Here's the link to the article posted by Greystone:
I can't help but shake my head in dismay.
At the same time, I'm inspired by their idiocy as they have openly revealed themselves for who they truly are and confirmed what we've been saying all along. The oft used statement "it's not about the birds" rings more true now than the bells of Westminster Cathedral and Notre Dame combined.
This new profit seeking venture must have been cleared by Defenders and SELC as well, for we see no mention of a potential lawsuit to stop these proposed drilling leases. Will they profit also?
I know this much is certain, If Dare County were to propose an exploratory drilling platform at the Fresenden Center to fund the upcoming lawsuits necessary to force NPS to obey the laws extant and return this Seashore to the people, SELC would be standing at the courtroom door waiting to file an intent before you could bait a hook.
Lets all hope that Audubon and their co-conspirators are given the national media thrashing they deserve for all of these actions.
Perhaps the new Congress will also lend us a hand and finally allow passage of legislation that will forever end this 30 plus year fight for free and open access to the nations first National Seashore Recreational Area.
And also, with the first Republican House and Senate in North Carolina since the late 19th century and Bassnight out of the "sit on the fence and do nothing" mode, we can look forward to resolution assisting not only access but the new bridge as well.
Write these people, pressure them to act, and do not relent.
Remember also that the time for us to act to preserve access draws nigh and funding is needed for the legal expenses that will come with that action. I urge all that read this to take the time to assist the Outer Banks Preservation Association in raising the necessary monies. Please log on to http://www.obpa.org/ to find out how and where you can help. Every dollar that goes into the legal fund helps us regain that which has unlawfully been taken from us, and helps to preserve this Seashore for future generations.