Opinion: Eastern Cherokees get youth moving

"Last week, the Eastern Band of Cherokee hosted the annual Talking Trees Children’s Trout Derby. This event is free to children 11 and younger and provides children an opportunity to experience the outdoors with their families. This opportunity is important because more and more families do not experience the world outside of a controlled electronic environment.

Studies have shown that children who have outdoor experiences with their families are better adjusted and have a better awareness of their place in the world. When the fishing derby began, a survey had just been released in which 80 percent of prisoners in federal corrections institutions reported they had no outdoor experiences as children. This alarming statistic confirmed what many in our region and many outdoorsmen already knew — the joy found in nature and the camaraderie of those experiences provides young people with a respect which creates better citizens. There are many who do not approve of hunting and fishing as recreation. That is their right and I will not argue with their beliefs.

In our community, our very survival has depended on managing resources and living off those resources. It is our tradition to take from the land and give thanks for those creatures which have sacrificed for our benefit. I believe we need to give children the foundation to become good citizens, and this is one method to accomplish that goal. "

Get the Story:
Lynne Harlan: Our children would greatly benefit from more time outdoors (The Asheville Citizen-Times 8/17)

Relevant Links:
Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians - http://www.cherokee-nc.com
Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, site 2 - http://www.nc-cherokee.com
Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, unofficial - http://www.easternband.com

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Opinion: Public prayer not meant to be offensive (4/27)
Opinion: Living in harmony with Mother Earth (4/13)