11/18/2017

February 16, 2015: Jekyll Island Authority Holds Its Fire on Deer Population

If you are a supercilious liberal you-know-what or a sanctimonious Bible thumper, I have some good news for you. I am giving you both the week off. Enjoy it while you can. I will be back.

Today, I am celebrating with my deer friends on Jekyll Island. You may recall that last year members of the Jekyll Island Authority decreed that there were too many of them — deer, not members of the Jekyll Island Authority — on the island and that the herd needed to be thinned out.  The JIA had plans to shoot them. Naturally, the deer weren’t too happy about that.

I got involved when the deer’s leader, Claude, contacted me last September. I assumed it was because he and his colleagues thought I wielded a lot of political power in Georgia. It turns out they weren’t looking for political power; they were looking for fire power. Claude had read about my prowess with my trusty Red Ryder pump-action BB gun with the camouflage stock and wanted to borrow the weapon. The deer had decided to shoot it out with the Authority. Claude said, “After all, what is good for the goose is good for the dandruff.” That is not exactly how the saying goes, but Claude was too distraught at the time to bring that up.

After spending some time with the Jekyll herd, I learned that deer have little regard for hunters. Claude’s Number Two in command, Arnold, reminded me that deer hunters dress themselves up to look like Spanish moss so you can’t see them and Day-Glo orange so that you can and then go sit in a tree waiting for a deer to show up. Arnold said, “I’ve never quite understood their logic. We don’t live in trees.”  That brought a few chuckles from the herd.

I told the deer that while I appreciated their plight, I was uncomfortable getting involved with their problems. It had been a number of years since my days as an external counselor. I now consider myself a legitimate member of the news media, like Clark Kent of the Daily Planet and that guy on MSNBC that looks like the Pillsbury Doughboy and who Zell Miller threatened to beat up on the air. Being a legitimate member of the news media, I am now expected to just report the news, not try to influence it. Claude wanted to know if we were talking about the same news media.

A doe named Gladys asked me how I would like it if a group of supercilious liberal you-know-whats or sanctimonious Bible thumpers dressed themselves in Spanish moss and Day-Glo orange and sat in a tree waiting for me to appear so they could ambush me. I joked that I hope it wouldn’t be a pecan tree because it would have a bunch of nuts already. Nobody laughed.

OK, I said, since you asked I would suggest you get on the offense. Make it sound like heartless government bureaucrats are intent on shooting poor, innocent Bambi. Tell little children that there may not be a Christmas next year. If Santa Claus runs out of reindeer, he won’t have anywhere to turn because there may not be any of you left to pull his sleigh and that will mean no toys for them. And why? Because you eat an occasional rhododendron? Big deal. Ask tourists if they come to Jekyll Island to see cute little deer or some dumb rhododendron bush. That should do the trick, I said. There were enthusiastic nods of approval.

Last week, I got a call from Claude saying my advice was spot-on. The Jekyll Island Authority has now backed off plans to bring sharpshooters on the island to thin out the herd. Instead, they say they want to study the problem some more. Claude said the herd wondered what they meant by that. I said that is bureaucrat-speak for hoping the problem will go away and that they won’t have to deal with it.

Government authorities are good at that kind of thing.

However, I warned him not to relax just yet. He and Arnold need to remind their colleagues to be on their best behavior. Smile and wave at every tourist you see and stop eating so many rhododendrons. In the meantime, I told Claude, I’ve got problems of my own. I have a lot of supercilious liberal you-know-whats and sanctimonious Bible thumpers who keep wanting to take shots at me. And I don’t even like rhododendrons

 

You can reach Dick Yarbrough at yarb2400@bellsouth.net; at P.O. Box 725373, Atlanta, Georgia 31139; online at dickyarbrough.com or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/dickyarb