The Minnow Bucket
Is it OK to fish for bass that are on their spawning beds? People in Minnesota and a few other states don’t seem to think so because they close the fishing season during the spawning period, but most people in all the other states believe it is OK and they don’t call for legislation banning fishing during the spawning season.
Minnesota’s closed season has been around for a long time, longer than I’ve been around. I tried to Google how long it’s been around and I was inundated with an endless list of regulations. Life is too short for me to want to dig through all of that.
I wonder if most of the people in Minnesota really like the regulation or whether it’s just an old law that we have been stuck with. Maybe it was never very popular at all but was passed through legislature by a few very caring and more knowledgeable people than I that had my best interest in mind (?). Or, maybe it was passed on account of some economic or political reasons of special interest groups that have certain amounts of revenue at stake?
In any event, somebody passed a law that says that I no longer have the freedom to decide to fish for spawning bass during most of the spawning season in Minnesota. That’s right, I said “most” of the spawning season, because the closed season doesn’t cover the entire spawning season. Most years there are still some fish spawning for a couple of weeks after the fishing season opens again. That means that for a couple of weeks I do get to use my own tiny little mind to try to make a decision on whether to fish for a spawning bass!
I understand that it’s very tempting to fish for those really big bass that we can see right there in shallow water protecting their offspring, but they are very vulnerable at that time. I get a much bigger thrill out of catching a big Bass that is free from the obligation of spawning and better able to defend itself. It’s more of a challenge and a bigger achievement for me. I have always thought that if the bass are willing to give me more fish to catch, I should probably let them do it and leave them alone.
I really don’t have a problem with the intent of the closed spawning season law, but it bothers me that other people are permitted by law to do the thinking and decision making for me. God gave us minds of our own and the freedom to use them, but we lose some of our freedom every time another law is passed.