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Wake up and smell the newsprint

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It seemed as though Todd Wilkinson's column, "Where do you draw the line?" was really asking, "Where should I draw the line?" (HCN, 1/21/08). I was unable to connect the dots between his reflections upon his own "lame and futile" political agitations of the past to beg the title question for the rest of us. Just because Mr. Wilkinson has not been engaged in attempts to actively generate change since the early to mid-1990s does not mean that an entire movement is currently in the midst of a "deep sleep." Perhaps it is Mr. Wilkinson who is asleep.

I also disagreed with the author when he referred to his dissenting actions as "meaningless gestures." On the contrary, he incited the actions of others through written words. And that is really all we can do when it comes to affecting change in issues that concern us: Utilize our skills and talents to do the best we can with what we've been given. Mr. Wilkinson is an established author and columnist and has the power to draw lines wherever he wants; people will read and sometimes listen.

So, where should you draw the line, Mr. Wilkinson? Preferably in the future as opposed to dwelling darkly in the past with the ghosts of Thoreau and Brower. For a start, how about an updated and in-depth article on the plight of the Yellowstone bison? Such an article would reveal an actual living eco-hero, Michael Mease, the founder of the Buffalo Field Campaign. The BFC is a nonprofit organization that has been hands-on in the field, confronting this issue every day for over 10 years. It is full of courageous activists who do not find "vigilance to be an inconvenience."

Matthew Bowser
Harrison, Montana

(Editor's note: We wrote about Yellowstone bison in "The Killing Fields," Dec. 6, 2006.)

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