Letter from Langdon: River Resistance
[imgbelt img= msfloodbarn530.jpg]The nation’s hard-fought flood controls have been eroding; now another Missouri River flood isn’t just a threat. It’s guaranteed.
They don’t call it “Big Muddy” for nothing.
Muddy will be on a rampage in coming months for plenty of reasons. Number one is snowmelt in places like the Big Horn Mountains of Montana. Further south in the Colorado Rockies the Platte River puts in its two bits as it crosses Nebraska, bringing more snow and rainwater to Muddy at Plattsmouth, NE.
From there it’s downhill all the way to Langdon. Unfortunately, flood control is no longer job one. That’s why we got bad news this weekend about rising water levels and coming evacuations.
The best our government can do these days is to issue a simple warning; Look out below!
Flood control used to be everything, with recreation as a bonus. But as cities have grown bigger and demand for recreation and water grows, we want our flood-control lakes full to the rim. Then environmentalists jump on the band wagon. Dams are bad, and these river bottoms shouldn’t be farmed they say, because nature never intended that. That’s what happened along the Mississippi a few weeks ago when Birds Point Levee was opened to prevent bigger overflows elsewhere. The call went out to abandon those areas to the natural world.
Mother Nature talks to me quite a bit, and what I hear her say is that when human beings lose the resolve to fight, we lose. We should protect the environment, and people too, because we’re all part of the same picture.
A torrent is on its way. This summer the Missouri will join the Mississippi and Mother Nature in trying to take back all we’ve gained in the last 100 years. Opportunists will make much of the fact. Corporations will try to turn it to their advantage and special interest groups will spin it into orbit. But America needs to know that our great flood control projects weren’t built for motor boats, river chutes, and pallid sturgeon. They were built for a reason by the greatest generation who knew that you don’t fight life and death wars to a draw.
Food, air, and water are essential to both life and freedom; flood control projects were built for a reason. It’s time to remember what that reason was.