Sunday, 10 April 2011

Gun Control

(Click on the photo to see it full size)

Razor clamming has been central to the local culture and economy since humans first arrived here. (By best current guess, 15,000 years and counting.) You used to be able to dig any tide low enough, and the limit was, uh... so many I never had to know how much it was. Then, when I was in high school, a combination of overdigging and an epidemic disease closed all the beaches, as in no more digging, ever. Together with a catastrophic failure of the logging industry, it blasted the whole coast back to the 1930s. We never really recovered.

But back in the 1990s, fisheries biologists determined that stocks had bounced back enough to open the beaches for a day, here and there, with a 15 clam limit. When the populations survived that, they authorised a few more openings. These days, it's typical to get one weekend per month between October and April. But that's no guarantee, and my suspicion is that what with recent development and the Tribe fully exercising its treaty rights, we're going to see fewer openings in the near future.

At any rate, I've seen some winter openings this year with July 4 crowds on the beach. And the digging has been harder, and less profitable. Especially for an old-schooler like me, who still uses the traditional clam gun and his own hands. Sometimes I'm the only guy on the sand with a shovel, surrounded by tube-tuggers like the Seafair Parade.

So that's my position. Open the beach, ban the tube. Make it guns-only from now on, just like back in the day.

And if that doesn't work, by God: ban the gun. We'll see who the real bay boys are.

Cereal box prize:

Links to Buddhist movies galore, with synopses. Many are instructional, if you're into that. Also many feature films, like those periodically reviewed here. You many never need to leave the house again.
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