Sunday, September 5, 2010
There is no “Aint hurtin’ nuttin’” clause
Some people really think that rules are meant only for other people and can be skirted past as long as they are not hurting anything. I hear this excuse used so much that there must actually be some Lionel Hutz (Simpson reference) Lawyer type introducing this a plausible defense for Reginald and Roberta RuleBreakers. Rest assured I have looked through the rules and regulations multiple times and can tell you there is not an “Aint hurtin’ nuttin’” clause. Of course I only reviewed the Colorado regulations but pretty sure that it’s the same across the board for other states.
I started to write and cite some examples of close calls and minor skirmishes with a few ill-behaved persons in the outdoors. But readers would be better served to review some advice and solutions instead. The hardest part for me is knowing when to step in and point out the violation versus avoiding an all out brawl for a misdemeanor infraction such as “menacing wildlife”.
1. Gauge the infraction versus worst-case scenario: Meaning is the problem worth stepping in and butting heads? I tell myself that I have a 50\50 chance of getting into fisticuffs anytime this happens.
2. If you do step in, have some backup: It is always best to have one person step in and have a second in the background with the cell phone poised to dial authorities. Once the fur starts flying person number makes the phone call, gives quick summary and directions-then jumps in to save the first guy. As soon as you say, “We can take them”…hopefully this rule pops into mind.
3. Don’t get involved if you don’t have to: The managing authorities are the folks who should be contacted immediately at the first sign of a serious outdoor infraction. They are trained and equipped to handle any situation that is bound to escalate out of your control. Jot down the number of the local agency or managing authority of where you plan on going just in case. You can kick back on the sidelines and watch the action from your campsite rather than get involved yourself.
4. Follow the rules. Everyone else is going to be following the rules at your local lake or campground so you will just look like an ass when you start doing rooster tails in the swim-beach section on your jet ski. People swim there. I had to throw this in to remind even myself at times that rules are rules and they are there for a reason (even the ones that may seem ridiculous).
Seeing how we have managed not to burn down the entire Rocky Mountains over the summer, it would be good to finish out the year avoiding any “Tossed-Butt Gulch” or “Lost control campfire” incidents. There have already been a few occurrences where “Aint hurtin’ nuttin’” actually led to someone getting hurt. Summer heat and too much alcohol doesn’t exactly bring out the best in most people. My guess is that after this 3-Day weekend…Mr. Hutz is going to have a little more business.
Good luck and Good Fishing!
Posted by Coloradocasters