Saturday, August 21, 2010


Before there were environmentalists, there were conservationists. They included outdoorsmen, including hunters and anglers, much more than the current environmental movement does. The changeover, and the social, class-influenced aspect of the new model, is hinted at here. Calvin Trillin, writing in 1970 (and you can get a reminder of the change in Abercrombie & Fitch as well)...
It is true that there is an automatic disdain for snowmobilers among the people I have always thought of as Abercrombie& Fitch Conservationists - sailing enthusiasts who complain about the noise the riffraff make with their outboards, people who build tasteful hundred-thousand dollar houses [note: probably a million now] and then talk about preserving the natural beauty of the area against the ugliness of tacky beach cottages.
Nice to see some historical support from a contemporaneous account for an idea I have been pushing here. Much modern environmentalism is aesthetic, rather than focused on actual environmental problems with some danger. (Commenter akafred can wax eloquent on this score, as his business puts him right in the thick of real environmental problems versus popular ones.)

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