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An Opinion in Just That

We all have opinions and, according to us, they are correct – just ask us. But, in our world today, I think sometimes we take our opinions too seriously – and that’s another opinion.
We don’t really get the news these days, we just get opinions on the news, and people may expect those opinions instead of hard news nowadays. However, we do correctly desire opinions and statements from our elected office holders and political leaders.
Everyone gives their opinions, and more often than not they don’t realize how that opinion may hurt or offend someone.
For example, take an event in Casper that was held April 30. A group of sportsmen put together a meeting and a panel to discuss convincing the State Land Board to buy a small ranch on the back of Casper Mountain. They have good intentions, but every sportsperson in the state is looking for good free hunting or fishing. The State Land Board had turned them down a couple weeks prior because of the expense, and maybe the fact that the state has no business in providing hunters and fishermen a free place to recreate was also a good reason to decline the purchase.
While the property certainly does have scenic value, it is too small for a great hunting experience or to be an economical ranch. There were some Wyoming legislators in the room, and they had to have felt uncomfortable listening to the discussion. How does a hunter in, say, Kemmerer or Newcastle feel about the state buying land close to Casper? How does a non-hunter feel about the state buying the land for someone to hunt on for free? Those questions are valid, plus the fact that the sportsmen had no chips on the table – one could tell they hadn’t even thought about reaching into their own pockets. While they did discuss fundraising later in the meeting, that idea was not theirs. There are ways to make it all work, but more stakeholders need to be at the table and more needs need to be met. Remember, it’s always easier to manage the neighbor’s property, and spend someone else’s money, and the difficult part in an argument is not to defend one’s opinion, but, rather, to understand all the opinions.
Here at the Roundup we like to hear other opinions, either as guest columns or letters to the editor. We ask for your opinion without an attack on someone else in agriculture, and showing civility and respect to others.
I’ve heard that a prejudice is a vagrant opinion without visible means of support. It is the tradition for the Roundup publisher to have an opinion every week, and hopefully one to educate, enlighten, entertain or otherwise be of use. I hope I do that in this weekly column.
I’ve always liked the quote: “The most difficult secret for a person to keep is the opinion they have of themselves.” This is my opinion this week, and I need to get it to Christy soon so she will unlock my door and let me out for lunch.
Dennis