RE: Chaconas opinion – I almost laughed at this opinion piece. Problem is, it is not funny in the least. To begin with the ramps, tackle shops, repair shops, the local DNR, as well as the local tax collector depend on revenue from the boaters, but their success hinges on the use by everyday anglers, not the revenue from 50 fishermen over a few days. Those monies were a drop in the bucket compared to the funds received from locals.
I grow so weary of folks comparing professional fishing to everyday careers. There is a difference between private enterprise and competing on public waters. There is a reason professional ball players compete in privately owned stadiums. If professional fishermen want those perks, then they need to finance private fisheries and charge admission. If they were forced to have fans pay for attendance to pay their salary, then we would see who should be thankful for whom.
Were it not for the "wannabes," as you so eloquently put it, the pros would be working normal jobs and fishing local derbies like the rest of us unworthys. I think most of the elites have forgotten that without us little people purchasing the products that they promote (unethically more often than not) they wouldn't have the sponsor dollars and products they enjoy, nor the opportunity to fish professionally.
Somehow this keeps getting painted as a local invading the pro's space when exactly the opposite occurred. Had Anthony been there first, everyone would be preaching how you do not move in on another angler. The same should apply to the "professional."
I wish a venue would close the lake for a professional tourney. The repercussions would alienate the very base touring pros need to survive.