Editor’s note: The following e-mails were forwarded by Neil McGaughlin, a former IDNR Conservation policeman, to The Rock River Times and are reprinted with permission of the writers.
From: Ted Peck
Sent: Thursday, January 19, 2012 10:12 AM
Subject: forest preserve vandalism
I’m sure your quest to return country forest preserves to a prairie state is well intentioned, but the brain trust that decided to “clear this path” has apparently chosen to overlook the unintended consequences of this endeavor and consider the will of the people before embarking on a heavy-handed, narrow-minded crusade.
Know that your vision to return these public properties to what is apparently your personal vision for retrogressive progress is not shared by persons with an understanding of nature at least equal to yours. I strongly suggest an immediate moratorium on this timber removal project and objective study of all ramifications before you proceed.
Ted Peck, outdoor writer
Editor’s note: Peck reports Hartley, director of Land and Development at the Winnebago County Forest Preserve District, never responded to his letter. Peck relates he has created “at least one outdoor column, broadcast, article, etc. every single week since June 1973. From June ’73 until August ’05, I was a resident of Winnebago County. The outdoors is my life. What is happening in the Winnebago County Forest Preserves is a narrow-minded, misguided travesty against a resource which requires deep and diverse consideration with anything that will impact our natural heritage!” Peck is also a full-time fishing guide.
As noted above, the following e-mail was sent to Peck, in response to the letter sent to Hartley.
Subject: Re: forest preserve vandalism
Ted, your letter to Mr. Hartley was gratefully appreciated. Not only by myself, but also by the those in the silent majority. Thanks for being there for those who can’t speak for themselves, those being nature itself and our environmentally intelligent crusaders, many to whom you are a forerunner. You help maintain what we so desperately need.
From the March 14-20, 2012, issue