Silas Sconiers first contacted me more than a year ago about his fight to gain access for anglers in Gary, Indiana. Incredibly, it’s the only city on the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway without access--- even though it has 22 miles fronting Lake Michigan!
In addition to posting a couple of articles at Activist Angler (see below), I made a couple of phone calls on his behalf to federal agencies. But I have no idea if they were of help.
What I do know is that Sconiers has refused to give up, and it now appears that he is picking of momentum in his quest for access. In early September, the Gary resident and his allies met with officials from the U.S. Department of Interior and National Park Service. Additionally, the Post-Tribune interviewed Sconiers.
“It makes no sense that we don’t have access,” said Sconiers in explaining why he decided to file civil rights complains as a strategy to gain access. “Gary is comprised of 93 percent minorities. And we don’t have a place to fish. Something is wrong here. We just want the same opportunity as everyone else.
“They say the beaches are open to us. That’s a joke. The first time some sunbather gets a hook in his or her foot there will be hell to pay. A grown man can cast as far as he possibly can from the shore and still be in only a foot of water. And there’s no structure — just sand. When you fish off a pier, you’re fishing in 15 to 30 feet of water. That’s where the game fish are.”