H. Neal Glanville: A brush with tree huggers
During my years in Northern Idaho, the spotted owl was flying amuck in the dark timber of the Northwest.
Small bands of know-it-alls would climb trees or drive spikes into the trunks.
They were hoping, they’d say, to save this winged creature from the evil loggers.
Of course, the liberal media jumped on this bandwagon like children on a merry-go-round.
It became a carnival of worthless cousins saving something they’d never seen except on TV, with the same file footage of a small bird fleeing a cameraman running over and over.
As life would have it, bored couch potatoes would drive hundreds of miles to gather in flocks, awaiting a goat to lead them.
They waved store-bought signs and degraded loggers and their livelihood.
No one noticed the political machine leeching onto the wagon, like a humpback sucker on a sand bar.
Logging as a lifeblood was coming to an end.
Small towns throughout Oregon, Idaho and Washington were drying up.
The governor of Idaho told the small towns not to worry, “anyone displaced by the bird and tree savers could get a free education in computer technology.”
When the towns of Horseshoe Bend, Cascade, Riggins and Grangeville began vanishing, only the carpetbaggers smiled.
The savers of bird and tree came together again in Jarbridge, Nev., this time to save a washed out road and the creek that ran beside it.
A small group of men offered to supply the equipment and labor needed to reclaim this dot in the middle of nowhere.
No how and no way, they laughed from their merry-go-round.
The small group of men became larger and larger. They became the “Golden Shovel Brigade” and a date was set for the needed repairs.
The only recourse the savers had was rumor. They told all that an armed band of men was coming to repair the washed out road and the creek beside it.
Again, the leeches appeared, demanding the savers be protected from the gun-toting repairmen.
The repair date arrived, as did the “Brigade” and untold numbers of law enforcement officers.
The road and the creek that ran beside it were soon reclaimed, much to the dismay of the savers and the media beside them.
Not much was said of the savers losing a battle, or the spotted owl not living in the neighborhood they’d whined so much about, as timber poured in from Canada.
But, they did get their day, Happy Earth Day.
Hey, you be careful out there, and stay to the light.