Tuesday, November 30, 2004

How the B.P. became the "Banned" Pastor.

At the Fishers of Men fall outing in 98 or 99 I was given the nickname "the Bass Pastor" by a jovial blind guy named John Boler. The nickname was due to the fact that I had been a youth pastor, was the club chaplain at the time, combined with my love of bass fishing. The nickname stuck and I have used it ever since in an email account, basspastor@hotmail.com, and when I participate in online fishing forums.

The big kahuna of online Minnesota Fishing forums is Fishingminnesota.com (blogrolled). I became a fixture on that board because I posted on it quite often, my famous rivalry with Cyberfish, and my outspoken position on a particular fishing regulation that I deem absurd for largemouth bass.

This is how the regulation reads:

You may not intentionally fish for any species during it's closed season.

I have a multitude of reasons why this regulation is unrealistic, unneeded and unenforceable as it pertains to spring pre-spawn largemouth. However, my POV is controversial and some people are better at being self-righteous snobs than rationale thinkers and level headed advocates for conservation. My online debating persona is a bit flamboyant and eccentric which tends to get under peoples skin as well.

Anyway, those who disagreed with me on the issue would whine and complain to the Fishingminnesota.com site administrator about how I was breaking forum policy regarding encouraging illegal or unethical behavior or some falderal like that. The administrator got tired of dealing with the complaints and told me to tone it down or else. I don't think I ever agreed to that, but the bass season opened and the annual argument had already come to a close; I participated in the same discussion on the matter for three consecutive Springs at FM.com.

More than a half a year after I had been warned, a topic came up on FM.com asking a question about whether or not a guy who witnessed a Muskie iced on Mille Lacs out of season and kept should have done more than tell the guy the fish was out of season and also have gone out of his way to call Turn In Poachers. This particular post was particularly humorous because the guy who witnessed the Muskie get caught said he was fishing for walleye's at the time; walleye's were also out of season and so the guy asking the question was fishing illegally himself. My opinion was that telling the guy that the muskie was out of season was the extent of his moral obligation and if the guy who caught the fish wanted to risk getting the fine for keeping the fish that was his business; I wouldn't go out of my way to see that the guy got caught because as far as I'm concerned the catch was a fluke and no harm done; there are lots of Ski's in the Dead Sea. Rendering this opinion was the last straw and I was banned for encouraging illegal or unethical behavior.

IMHO it was bogus to ban me for giving my opinion on question someone asked, but the site administrator of a board gets to be a dictator and what they say goes, and so I was done. While FishingMinnesota.com is good message board for information thanks to it's size and participants, it also has gained a reputation as being a "Nazi" board that arbitrarily punishes and sanctions people because that is what they do.

MN fishing forums that I am currently involved with are Lake State Fishing.com and In-Depth Angling.com (see blogroll).


Anonymous said...

I was also banned from tht site. Not exactly sure what I did wrong, but I can no longer log in. I followed the instructions to the letter to try to get reinstated, but finally gave up. I sent emails and apologized, etc... still nothing. Good thread on this is over here...


Anonymous said...

sounds like a good place to be banned from, i wouldn't bother to try to get back on with crap like that happening. the whole point of those site is to read and tell opinions.....