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About the writer
Phil Wright, whose letter appeared Feb. 20, has been selected as last month’s Golden Pen award winner. In the judgment of the editors, he had the most effective letter to the editor during February.
Wright, 56, is an emergency physician and the medical director for Physicians Health Plan. This is the second time he has won the Golden Pen award.
He wrote his letter to affirm and further expand upon an earlier letter to the editor written by Wilson Lutz, who was Wright’s biochemistry professor at Manchester University.
“The Constitution is a pretty important document,” Wright said. “Any changes to it can have drastic effects down the line in the future, and unless it’s really important you don’t fiddle with it.”
He said no one is trying to prevent people from hunting, fishing or farming, so this type of action is not appropriate for a constitutional amendment.
Wright received a gold-plated inscribed pen for his efforts. The Golden Pen Award was established to express our appreciation for the contributions our letter writers make to the editorial page.
Chad Ryan | The Journal Gazette
Phil Wright is the winner of the Golden Pen for his Feb. 20 letter to the editor.

Golden Pen winner: February

Hunting-fishing amendment reveals party’s hidden agenda

Wilson Lutz’s letter of Feb. 12 (“Hunt-fish amendment doesn’t go far enough”) is on the right track but doesn’t go far enough in adding protected activities to the state constitution.

If we are going to have a state constitutional amendment protecting the right to hunt, farm and fish, we certainly need an amendment protecting our right to walk and our right to breathe. What about eating, standing, sitting and reading the opinion page of the paper? This being Indiana, what about the right to play basketball? And brushing our teeth is important ... flossing, too! Those two need an amendment making us do them; just ask my dentist.

The legislature is indeed going to be busy, and we are going to have one very long constitution if the sponsors of this amendment get everything covered that is as important as hunting, farming and fishing.

Or maybe this nice little constitutional amendment isn’t as innocent as it looks. Maybe it doesn’t reveal all they really intend.

Is this a way to elevate the rights of big confined animal feeding operation farmers to pollute; to elevate rights of hunters so that reasonable gun laws would somehow not apply as they should?

Watch carefully, Indiana. While the fox is guarding the henhouse in our legislature, they will come up with legislation that can have a hidden agenda and very undesirable consequences. At very best this is an unnecessary distraction. Legislators need to return to serious functions of our state government and quit wasting time with frivolous activity.