Since we last “talked” in this space, last week,
the second of two important concepts has passed the originating house in
the general assembly, but neither is “out of the woods” yet. There is still
work to be done on both measures.
SJR 14 passed the Senate last week and now is
in the hands of the House of Representatives where it has not been assigned
to a committee. Rep. Patrick Bauer, Speaker of the House, could assign
it, if he will. If it is assigned to some other committee, it could be
the death knell. Otherwise, it could be okay. This is the so-called “right
to hunt” resolution that passed the legislature two years ago. It merely
amends the Indiana Constitution to give those who hunt, fish, and pursue
fur-bearing animals the (emphatic) right to do so.
By law, the resolution must pass the legislature
twice, with a general election between, before it is voted upon in a referendum.
Thus, if SJR 14 is adopted again, it still must gain the nod of voters
who will have the final say at the polls. Perhaps that is the way it should
The vote on SJR 14 in the Senate was 46 for passage,
So much for politics.
Last week I told you in this column that HB 1299
[Senior Citizen fishing license bill] passed, and I have since learned
that the vote went, maybe significantly, 96-0. Of course, SJR 14 is now
in the lily-white, squeaky-clean hands of the House Natural Resources Committee.
Dawn Krause (317-232-4095), of the sponsoring
Department of Natural Resources, will be accepting reservations ($165.00)
for this year’s version of Becoming an Outdoors Woman scheduled for May
4-6 at Ross Camp near Lafayette. Registration begins March 1.
“Becoming an Outdoors Woman introduces women to
more than 30 outdoor sports and skills in a safe, non-competitive environment.
The hands-on classes promote confidence and learning for women trying to
learn new sports or improve on existing skills,” Krause (not related to
my friend Bama Barry, formerly of the Colts), says.
Ho, Hum! Spring must be nigh. At least that’s
what the birds are telling me. Recently I have noticed male cardinals,
blue jays, and some species that escape me, jockeying for mating position
by feeding the apparent females little morsels.
The male and female vary greatly in the case of
cardinals, but they appear much alike in the jays. It would be nice if
the species that look alike carried some distinguishing marks, but many
don’t. You just gotta guess which is which.
This column has been taken to task by a reader
who objects to my reference a few columns back to “dumb animals”. The reader
says one of his squirrels certainly is not dumb and qualifies his statement
with a story about how his squirrel found a way to enter a bird feeder.
I, too, find squirrels, and other animals quite
smart. But, in accordance with Mr. Webster’s book, they are “dumb animals”
because they do not speak our language (usually). Still, I am quite sure
their overt actions and barking convey messages to other squirrels, other
birds and animals, and (gasp) some humans.
I find it rather amusing that as a Southern Indiana
boy, I learned to bark like a squirrel, and had conversations with them
often. But I was never certain what they said. Who’s the dumb one?