In the Sept. 13 news article “Fish wars swirl around diminishing flounder,” a crucial voice was left out of the conversation concerning flounder overfishing. This is the voice of the local fisherman, although not a commercial fisherman, who fishes to feed his family.
Although I am a student now in Raleigh, I grew up in Carteret County where money made from tourism-driven recreational fishing and commercial fishing keeps our county afloat.
Certainly I agree that dwindling flounder stocks could harm both sides of our county economy. But what about the local and his family who have lived the salt life for decades? The local who relies on the life-giving waters of Bogue Sound and the Atlantic Ocean, who understands the give and take of the salty estuaries and never takes more than his share? What’s he to do when there are no flounder left? Does he not have a right to a voice in this conversation?
Many gifts from the coast provided my family nourishment in hard times – flounder, shrimp, sea bass, blue fish, oysters, clams. My family worked hard for these meals, and many more generations of locals have a right to their heritage. They deserve to be included in the conversation.