I continue to read in The Olympian about landowners who are forbidden to utilize their land or who are required to pay ridiculous fees to test for the presence of gophers. I also continue to wonder why.
I understand the potential for extinction and balance of nature issues but have a tough time understanding their significance in this case. It isn't that we would lose a magnificent species or that nature couldn't restore its balance.
We came back from the extinction of carrier pigeons (or some such name) pretty well. Somehow we manage without the dodo and the T Rex.
I'm reminded of the controversy a few years ago when raccoons were killing pets and destroying attics, and the accompanying "We must learn to coexist. After all, they were here first."
The powers that be need to acknowledge that people have a right to their land and, if the result is extinction of an insignificant species, oh well. Gophers and spot ted owls haven't made much of a contribution to society. In spite of our destruction of the environment, man has.
Have you ever heard of a gopher writing a symphony, painting a masterpiece or discovering the cure for a disease? There are priorities, and we're top of the food chain for a reason.