Well, that thread about radical animal rights groups who want to abolish hunting died a lonely death. Probably because the first post was a Catholic theologian giving biblical justifications why the animal rights people and anti hunting groups are theologically wrong. Nevertheless, conservation issues are vitally important to hunters and fishermen, to citizens of Louisiana and to everyone else in the United States whether they know it or not. Not many of you know this, but I was a line cook and college, and returned to cooking after leaving my first career...as a fish biologist and project manager. I started up one of the first Redfish farms in Louisiana, and lived out in Barataria bay for about 10 years. I am a devout conservationist. In fact, I (and some others) won the first place award in the whole United States for Large scale environmental planning. Governor Edwards appointed fifty of us from industry, conservation and cultural groups to form the Management Conference of the fledgling Barataria/Terrebonne National Estuary Program. It was a federal/State task force who's mission was to write a Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan (CCMP). I was appointed to represent the aquaculture industry. That program was the thirteenth one in the United States of America (another example Of Louisiana being almost last in something)...yet it was the very first one to win that prestigious award from the American Planning association !! It was a plan and not law. It was a plan that was supposed to be used as a standard against which laws were supposed to be compared with to see if they were in accord or discord. It was anyhting but... It is mostly, a nice, thick bundle of bound paper That looks impressive on the bookshelf in the offices of mostly very important people...and the award is a nicely framed testimonial on those same office walls. Mine is somewhere in the attic of my house, along with the Governor's award from Louisiana and the commendatory proclamation from the Louisiana State Legislature that was given to us. I passed on the Waterford crystal statue that could have been mine for around $500 (if I recall correctly). I believe it was an almost totally ineffective project because We're still losing our wetlands at a sickening rate and with it we're losing our culture. I'm sick and upset that this is the case. You should be too. Nothing much, beside talk and studies, has been accomplished and I feel that I wasted my time and efforts because I define success by actual results not self serving prestige. I wanted to start the topic for a long time...well, times up !! It's time that at least a few of us become concerned, informed and better citizens. Please use this column for expressing opinions, posting links to articles about conservation and environmental issues, relating personal experiences, and learning how to vote more intelligently no matter how you vote or politically active you are.