GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., May 23, 2005 — “Not since the first hunting license was issued, not since the first bag limit was established, not since the first protection of the wildlife habitat by state and federal authorities was instituted, has there been such a revolutionary program created to protect the sportsmen’s heritage while safeguarding the rights and future of recreational hunters and anglers,” said Alan Taylor, chairman and co-founder of the Nimrod Society, a non-profit organization working to develop on-going public education programs in states across the country.
The Nimrod Society has applauded the state of Colorado for passing a bill in May that establishes a $.75 surcharge on all hunting and fishing licenses in order to create a permanent, sustainable revenue source dedicated to public education programs in Colorado. The Wildlife Management Public Education Advisory Council (PEAC of Colorado) anticipates that approximately $1 million will be raised annually and dedicated to educating the public in Colorado as to the positive role that sportsmen play in society through wildlife management and conservation.
“Colorado is leading the way with one of the most revolutionary actions ever undertaken by the hunting and fishing community,” Taylor said. “Sportsmen have not had a coordinated voice in society to combat the misinformation and emotional rhetoric put out by animal rights organizations who have for years used the mass media to promote their ideology. These anti-hunting and anti-fishing groups spend millions of dollars each year attempting to sway the public to their views. Instead, hunters and fishermen have been supporting wildlife management and conservation through license fees and taxes for more than a century.”
Taylor added that other states across the nation will have an opportunity to continue down the path that Colorado has initiated. The mission of the Nimrod Society is to encourage other states to follow the Colorado model and develop permanent financing for on-going public education programs
“It’s critical that we (sportsmen) tell our story to the general public so they understand the true, credible and accurate information as to the societal values of hunting and fishing,” said Taylor. “By combating rhetoric with facts, the general public should support, or at least recognize, recreational hunting and fishing as a worthwhile pastime.”
The Wildlife Management Public Education Advisory Council (PEAC of Colorado) was behind the seven year effort to get Colorado legislators to support a permanent financing mechanism for public education programs aimed at informing the non-hunting and non-fishing publics of the positive role sportsmen play in society. For more information, visit www.wildlife-management-education.org.
There are approximately 47 million sportsmen in the United States. According to the Congressional Sportsmen Foundation, there are more than twice as many sportsmen than there are members of labor unions in the U.S., and that sportsmen support approximately 575,000 jobs in the U.S., more than Wal-Mart, the nation’s largest employer.
The Nimrod Society wants to protect the privileges of the nation’s sportsmen while continuing and advancing conservation and wildlife management education programs by educating non-sportsmen users of public lands and the general public o the positive role sportsmen play in wildlife conservation.
The Nimrod Society is a 501 (c) 3, non-profit organization aimed at encouraging state and federal wildlife management and conservation agencies to adopt self-sustaining revenue models to fund ongoing, comprehensive media based education campaigns targeted at the general public. The Nimrod Society was formed in 2003 and refers to the biblical name of Nimrod, the founder of Babylon and “a mighty hunter before the Lord” (Genesis:10:8-12).
Individuals, legislators and government officials interested in learning more about the Nimrod Society or supporting its goals should visit www.nimrodsociety.org, or contact Alan Taylor at 616-887-0400 or Bob Radocy at 303-444-4720, firstname.lastname@example.org.