Wildlife Federation learned decisions have consequences

Published 11:20 am Tuesday, August 6, 2019

As children grow up, one teaching moment for parents is showing their children that decisions have consequences. There are moments when a child makes a good decision and is rewarded, while the opposite is also true.

This is an important life lesson, as every action we take and decision we make is met with a reaction or a consequence.

If you decide to hit the snooze button three too many times and have to speed to work, the speeding ticket and higher insurance costs are the consequences for your decision to sleep in. Lesson learned.

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When it comes to businesses and organizations, decisions are also met with consequences — both good and bad.

The Mississippi Wildlife Federation is facing the consequences of decisions it has made. A non-profit organization established in 1946, the Federation says its mission “is to conserve Mississippi’s natural resources and protect our wildlife legacy.”

But it is not their mission that is at odds with many today. It is their longstanding position on the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ plan to complete the flood mitigation plan in the Yazoo Backwater Area by installing pumps.

Their position is based on a belief that pumps would damage the environment, threaten wetlands and harm wildlife.

Claims on social media that the Federation blocked a group promoting the completion of the flood project and installation of the pumps from attending their annual Wildlife Extravaganza brought its stance into the spotlight last week.

Officials with the Federation say the group was not prevented from attending, but waitlisted since the event was out of space.

Regardless of what actually happened, news of the slight went viral.

As it became widely known that the Federation was opposed to the pumps — pumps that experts agree would have significantly curtailed the effects of a historic and devastating flood in the Yazoo Backwater Area, one vendor after another canceled their booths at last weekend’s Extravaganza.

Throughout the latter part of the week, groups, organizations, and businesses — and of course, elected officials — flooded social media with comments distancing themselves from both the event and the group’s position on the pumps.

The public had spoken and a consequence of the Federation’s longstanding position was felt.

This is the way democracy works. There was no revolt, no guns drawn, nor any disparaging remarks made — well not a lot of disparaging remarks anyway.

Will the Federation change their position on the pumps? Probably not, as the Federation stands by their position.

Are they wrong? We believe so. The evidence in support of the backwater pumps is mounting. The horrible effects of more than 70 years of not completing the project are too.

Just as they do in elections, the people spoke with their voices and their actions last week in boycotting and stepping away from the Wildlife Federation’s Wildlife Extravaganza.

Now, let’s hope that voice and those actions lead to other decisions — decisions made by our federal government — in getting this project completed sooner rather than later. Remember, decisions have consequences.