Re: [Videolib] Activist WV filmmaker saves the flock

Steve Fesenmaier (
Wed, 02 Jul 2003 13:03:35 -0400

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Activist Filmmaker

B.J. Gudmundsson had to put down the camera and jump into reality in
June. She was told on a Wednesday that the US Park Service was going to
exterminate a flock of geese on Lake Sherwood in Greenbrier County.
Over the years there had been complaints about the geese defiling the
lake. So without anyone knowing it, they were going to take care of the
“problem.” BJ started notifying the press and various people and very
quickly she got a response. Senator Rockefeller’s office contacted her,
as did local media. The Charleston Daily Mail had a front-page story on
Friday night with a follow-up on Saturday. A local (Bluefield) TV
station went with her to the lake on Sunday to film the geese. Finally,
the US Park Service announced that they were NOT going to zap the poor
animals on Monday. After a meeting in Elkins, the kill was called off
for the year. The biologist, Robert Stovall, has alternate plans – like
moving the geese. BJ stated, “I'm all cheered up! There is a serious
obligation that goes along with having a democracy. When well-meaning
folks put their nose to the grindstone for the right reasons, things get
done. My faith is restored.” She added, “Important thing is opening up
some dialogue between the government and the people on how we conduct
business and how we solve problems. I'd love to see some effort come
out of this toward educating the public on how to co-exist with the
wildlife.” So we know that it’s not just facts about UFOs that our
federal government is keeping to itself. BJ has been working on a new
documentary about one of the world’s earliest crusaders for the
environment – Cal Price, the editor of the Pocahontas Times in the first
half of the 20th century. I hope the US Park Service buys 100 copies to
give their staff some “sensitivity training.”

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