I’ll tolerate them, if they tolerate me

Editor:

I am sorry to hear about Frank Sutliff’s misfortune with the ATV riders (ATV riders’ abuse burns rural landowners, Feb. 7).

I do not condone this action, which gives all ATV riders a black eye. Most ATV riders are responsible people and would like to respect farmers’ property, although it is hard to trail ride and not be on private land. Most of us spend several thousand dollars for ATVs and accessories and enjoy riding them.

I don’t condone riding on farmland but not all land is farmed. I will tolerate mud on the road, look out for farmers’ livestock on the road, give them time to get big equipment on and off the road, if they tolerate me trespassing on their unfarmed land – after all, we are all neighbors.

Ohio has an ATV registration system in place for a fee. I would prefer the Farm Bureau help get county, state, federal and large land holders to open up areas for ATV riders to ride, to be paid for by licensing fees from the state. Large land holders could get property tax incentives for opening up their land for riding.

If there were places to ride, there would be less trespassing and would help the farmer with fewer laws. Many farmers and Farm Bureau members are ATV riders. Not all of us can own large tracts of land to ride on, but we are willing to pay a license fee to support public riding areas.

Donald O. Furler

Marietta, Ohio

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