Schumer steps into river border mess

New York’s senior senator is dropping in at the Antique Boat Museum in Clayton this morning to call on both the US and Canadian border protection agencies to figure out how to protect the fishing and tourism industries from tightened — and confusing — border enforcement along the St. Lawrence.

Canadian officers boarded, searched and seized Roy Anderson’s boat  as he and a friend fished, unanchored, on May 30th.

The officers fined Anderson $1000 dollars on the spot. He paid by credit card to get his boat released.

Anderson later said he was fishing under the common belief that anglers didn’t have to check in at Canada customs as long as they haven’t anchored or docked the boat.

The US State Department later said the Canadian officers were well within their legal authority.

The problem is, the international border snakes along the middle of the St. Lawrence.  Law-abiding people who live on or visit the river — on both sides of the line — have for centuries paddled, rowed, sailed and motored pretty much at will, except for wartime.

In boating and fishing circles from the Thousand Islands to Massena, the Canadian seizure and fine was seen as pretty much a game-changer.

One US fishing tournament — the NYBASS Tourney, scheduled for July 23 in Massena — has pulled competitors back from Canadian waters just in case. Others tournaments are threatened.

Schumer wants a plan to prescreen fishing tournament participants that would allow them to fish on both sides of the border.

I hope they do. Now what about everybody, and everything, else along the river?

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6 Comments on “Schumer steps into river border mess”

  1. If Clapton is God, Warren Haynes is Jesus says:

    “Law-abiding people who live on or visit the river — on both sides of the line — have for centuries paddled, rowed, sailed and motored pretty much at will, except for wartime.”

    “Except in wartime.” But we’re at war on the northern border. It’s called the Drug War. A war in which Schumer is a huge enabler. From advocating the use of aerial drones along the border to bringing ever more federal DEA agents and resources to sites along the St. Lawrence/Lake Ontario.

    I find it ironic that he now has an issue with the Canadians essentially fighting that same war. In my opinion Schumer is a great example of everything that is wrong with politicians. A career politician who says and does anything for a vote and never misses a photo opt.. Claims he’s fighting for the little guy all the while bought and paid for by monied interests on Wall Street and Corporate America.

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  2. stillin says:

    Touristm…with our “neighbor” Canada. Last night, on the way to bluesfest to hear Stephan Marley of the famous Bob Marley family, my daughter and I were brought into Canadian Immigration. We left for this concert with enough time to get to the show, but thanks to Immigration/Customs…we were delayed more than half an hour. Neither of us have any records, law problems etc. I told them we were going to the 9 pm show. Immigration asked us questions like “how did we know eachother”, our passports sitting there with the obvious same last name. We look exactly alike. Had either of us lived anywhere else ever in our lives. What was the reason we were pulled in there and consequently missed the first half of the show we had bought tickets to. I love going to Ottawa and Montreal’ but I am fed up with the crap at the border.

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  3. Bret4207 says:

    Well, if Chucky is involved it’s almost certain nothing good will happen.

    Stillin, I’m not saying this is the reason, but if you’ll recall everyone got all up in arms when law enforcement “profiled” people. So now there’s supposed to be no profiling, looking for and detaining people that fit a certain demographic that is inclined to be a problem- young Arab males buying one way tickets for instance. So instead of using common sense you and grandma and your kids get detained…all to please the ACLU, etc.

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  4. Lucy Martin says:

    A Canadian friend (who knows nothing about this particular incident, but understands a great deal about politics) offered an interesting perspective. She suspects Canada could be stepping up enforcement of regulations–at the behest of the U.S.

    After all, Canada does a lot of things to please its neighbor, to a degree that becomes a sore point among Canadians, at times.

    Which country has most insisted on tightening everything to do with border security, hmm?

    US politicians along the border who favor a more relaxed relationship may be an isolated minority. The US (as a whole) is, perhaps, insisting on plugging all those pesky gaps.

    Is Canada taking heat for merely doing as it was asked? And finds it impolite or undiplomatic to reply that Americans need to make up their own mind on what they actually want?

    I am not sure you can really get a straight answer on this, much as people deserve one.

    But it wouldn’t be the first time good sense and common civility were deemed less important than some larger concept of national security, debatable as that may be.

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  5. Pete Klein says:

    The drug war is a joke. Must everything in this country be a war on something, everything and anything?
    Legalize the junk but don’t tax it the same way cigarettes are taxed or we will just have the war on bootleg drugs.
    This used to be the land of the free and the home of the brave but is now fast becoming the land of willing slaves and cowards.

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  6. stillin says:

    I agree with Pete Klein, feeling more and more like a ginormous plantation to me everyday….and it’s wearing thin with me.

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