RSS

Author Archives: dvoight09

Patricia Randolph’s Madravenspeak: The best nature killers can buy: Attend April 10 election to save cranes and more

IMG_0065

Dawn Huczek/Flickr

“We’re in the end game (of species extinction) all around the world.” ~ E.O. Wilson, Pulitzer Prize-winning Harvard scientist

The DNR/Wisconsin Conservation Congress election of two delegates in every county in the state is Monday, April 10, at 6:30 p.m. There are also 88 advisory questions to vote on, including ones to initiate a sandhill crane hunt, regulate high-capacity wells and factory farms, suspend sand fracking mining permits, oppose expansion the Enbridge pipeline right-of-way from Superior to Delavan from 80 to 280 feet wide, and more. Locations in every county and the entire questionnaire can be found on the DNR website here. And there is more information on this election and vote in the last Madravenspeak column.

Other questions include:

• Extend the bow-hunting deer season from mid-September to Jan. 31; extend the turkey and pheasant hunts and fisher trapping seasons.

• List collared doves as an unprotected species and monk parrots (should they happen to fly into Wisconsin) as a nuisance species.

• Eliminate standards on barrel lengths of handguns used to kill; deregulate the size of pellets in pellet guns; let any size shot be used on wildlife.

• Otters: The DNR admits “there are challenges in estimating the otter population because they are an aquatic species that is difficult to survey.” Yet they maintain that after giving every trapper two otter kill licenses, there are miraculously still 13,000 otters in the state. They want to eliminate that as a population goal (so hunters can kill them all without others noticing).

• Open more closed areas to trapping beavers and otters.

• Increase opportunities for upland game hunting and trapping and open more former wildlife refuges.

• Some state park lands were closed to deer hunting mid-Sept into November for safe hiking — resolution would end that.

One interesting question is: “Would you support the WCC and the DNR working to offer an online option for the public to provide input on the questionnaire? The elections of the WCC delegates would remain in-person at each Spring Hearing location only. “

This could make it easier for all citizens to have input, but it would remain input on a largely hunter/trapper agenda. It is issues like the sandhill crane hunt that bring non-hunters to the “hearings” and then they learn about the election. Without the issues to attract attendance, it is unlikely the election would ever include representation of the 90 percent of us who do not kill.

One solution is to put the questionnaire online, but only if the DNR develops a statewide education and outreach campaign and only if the election of WCC delegates is included on the ballot in each county as a part of the regular elections held statewide the first Tuesday in April, a week before the WCC event. That would involve candidates campaigning and discussing issues in advance, which is not the case now.

The Conservation Congress was created in 1935. According to the DNR’s website, “The purpose was to provide Wisconsin citizens with a local avenue for input and exchange concerning conservation issues. Prior to 1937, all fees, seasons, bag limits and regulations were established by the State Legislature.”

In 1972, Gov. Patrick Lucey signed legislation to make what is in actuality a hunting lobbying group the sole public advisory to the DNR, Natural Resources Board and Legislature on our public lands, water and wildlife.

The DNR had been financed by hunting and trapping licenses from inception and was well established as primarily a killing business by the time 1972 rolled around. So the DNR, along with the Conservation Congress, never made any effort to open the election to the general nonhunting public.

This system is unsustainable and must be democratized so that living wildlife are valued.

In the article “Half of the world’s species could become extinct by 2100,” Feb. 27, 2017, the organizers of the Biological Extinction conference held at the Vatican that week said, “The living fabric of the world is slipping through our fingers without our showing much sign of caring.”

Organizer and biologist professor Peter Raven of the Missouri Botanical Garden warned, “By the beginning of the next century we face the prospect of losing half our wildlife. Yet we rely on the living world to sustain ourselves. It is very frightening. The extinctions we face pose an even greater threat to civilization than climate change — for the simple reason they are irreversible.”

“The world seems not incapable but rather unwilling to take the necessary steps to ensure a sustainable future — not for the Earth, but for ourselves. If forecasts are confirmed, and 30-50 percent of the planet’s species will be wiped out by 2100, we’ll all be to blame. Oh, and we’ll all suffer.”

Attend your county vote and run for election.

There will be suggestions for humane answers to the questionnaire posted on the Wisconsin Wildlife Ethic website before the election.

For more info on cranes, see here, here, and here. The International Crane Foundation, located in Baraboo, has provided information on the proposed hunt here.

This column was originally published in the Madison CapTimes on April 9, 2017.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on April 10, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

WCC QUESTIONNAIRE – SUGGESTED ANSWERS

The link to where the humane “cheat” sheet for the Wisconsin Conservation Congress (WCC) meeting tomorrow April 10 can be found here (use browser option to view), complete with copy and paste options. Please consider attending as there are so many important issues on this year’s agenda. Every vote counts!

Please keep in mind that the recommended answers to the questionnaire are suggestions. Also note, some questions really don’t have a humane answer (those identified with a question mark). At the end of the day, we only ask that you read through the questions, suggested answers and make your own decision.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on April 9, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

WPatricia Randolph’s Madravenspeak: Vote April 10 on a crane hunt, factory farming, frac-sand mining, pipeline expansion and more

IMG_0064

Pixnio Free Images

“The least I can do is speak out for those who cannot speak for themselves.” ~ Jane Goodall

Monday evening, 6:30 p.m., April 10, the 83rd statewide county elections of delegates will be held to elect representatives to voice our will in governing our public lands, waters and wildlife. Find this year’s policy proposal questionnaire and your county location here on the DNR website. There you can learn how to propose change (make a resolution), and how to run for one of the two open delegate positions in your county, with candidates announcing their candidacy only the night of the election.

There are a wide variety of issues that should attract most citizens to attend and vote, since they directly impact most of our lives. Madravenspeak will provide a second column, April 9, explaining more about this election and the aggressive agenda up for public input.

Some of the issues up for the April 10 vote are:

• Vote whether the Legislature should initiate an annual sandhill crane hunt. Watch two minutes of this crane hunt video to send you and your family flying to your local county meeting to protect our cranes. This one night makes all the difference.

• Vote whether to repeal Act 1, the 2013 law deregulating mining in Wisconsin. Large-scale mining and mining waste projects threaten thousands of acres of Wisconsin forests and wetlands, groundwater and navigable waters.

• Concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) pose great risks to air quality, groundwater and river systems. Do citizens support legislation to require the DNR to suspend applications where pollution should be studied by tribes or local government agencies?

• High-capacity wells are currently approved with no notice to area residents and limited consideration of impacts to surface waters. Do citizens support notice given to residents in a 2-mile radius when high-capacity well applications are made — and suspension of permission when damage is done to area wells, wetlands or surface waters?

• Enbridge Pipeline Corporation wants to expand its right-of-way from 80 feet to 280 feet and run pipeline down the entire state from Superior to Delavan. This increases tar sands movement through that pipeline, endangering thousands of acres of forests and communities with inevitable spills. Do you oppose this expansion?

Last year’s election and vote had the usual low turnout. Only 4,363 citizens turned out to vote, primarily from the hunter/trapper/hounder special interests who designed this election, which essentially is hidden from the nonhunting public with complicity of the DNR.

Ralph Nader says that if 1 percent of the population organized for change, we could lead the way to a fair and democratic future. According to the 2016 census, Wisconsin had 4,457,275 voting-age citizens. If 1 percent of you attend this election and vote, that would be 44,500, or 10 times the usual attendance. We could transform this annual vote to to represent all of us in humane relationship to the web of life that supports us and each other.

For those concerned about saving the last third of wildlife and non-human life on earth, there are many issues of importance. A few more  (to be discussed in the next column) are:

• Monarchs have declined 90 percent in the last 20 years due to Farm Bureau and legislative support of using poisons on our food supplies. Do you support the DNR encouraging the planting of milkweed?

• Hunters continue to litter tons of lead shot in wetlands and at shooting ranges, voting continually to keep using it. It poisons untold thousands of wildlife in the most painful way. Do you support a voluntary program for hunters to clean up their lead shot on our public lands used as shooting ranges?

• Trapping is allowed year-round by landowners and their agents on their land, however the use of cable restraints (wire snares) is currently only allowed from Dec. 1-Feb. 15. Do you want a DNR rule change to allow them to snare wildlife year-round?

• Wisconsin is one of few states that allows the running of packs of dogs on free-roaming animals, year-round, including bear, wolf, bobcat, coyote, fox and raccoon. It allows this abuse without regulation or charging a fee. Since other states ban this obscenity, hunters flock here from other states to run their dogs on our wildlife free of charge. Would you like to expand dog-killing and harassment of wildlife to other states with reciprocity agreements so that Wisconsin hunters can torment wildlife in other states in exchange for hunters from outside torturing our wildlife? Would you like to charge hunters from other states for torturing our wildlife in this uniquely cruel way? Or continue to let them do it free?

The most important part of this election and vote is the election itself. No humane or democratizing policy proposals can make it through the hunter stranglehold to the questionnaire if we do not have general public citizen diversity represented by elected delegates.

After citizens have had time to look over the questionnaire, I welcome inquiries from citizens interested in stepping up to run for candidacy. You are the leader life is seeking.

ACTION: Call Senator Ron Johnson 202-224-5323 and Senator Tammy Baldwin 202-224-5653 to withdraw legislation de-listing wolves from Endangered Species Act protection.

This column was originally published in the Madison CapTimes on March 27, 2017.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on April 2, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Patricia Randolph’s Madravenspeak: Human ability to destroy nonhuman life exceeds all expectations

IMG_0061

throra/Animal Photos!

Humanity now demands over 50 percent more than what the planet can regenerate.”~ Global Footprint Network

The last time I wrote about how “Wisconsin Hates Wildlife,” in 2011, the World Wildlife Fund had estimated that “the population of birds, fish, mammals, reptiles and amphibians has plummeted 35 percent worldwide in the last 35 years.”

Starting with their self-serving age-old lie that killing is “conservation,” the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources is out to “conserve” the last third of that wildlife into the annals of extinction history.

Human abilities to destroy life have exceeded all expectations and WWF now states, “There will be a 67 percent decline in global populations of fish, birds, mammals, amphibians and reptiles from 1970 levels by the end of this decade (in three years).”

Doubling the kill in just a fourth of the time is no doubt due to that busy opposable thumb (or trigger finger) and our prized “reason.” We are the special species set apart from all others. We can rationalize almost anything.

We are such a violent and “sportive” species that half of all species are likely to be extinct by the end of this century. We may be one of them, since oceans are predicted to be fish-less (dead) by 2048, and as ecosystems collapse, war will likely ensue to consume the last scraps of life left.

Now, thanks to accelerating efforts by the Wisconsin DNR, similar agencies in other states, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the new secretary of the interior (Ryan Zinke, an avid hunter), Trump’s pick for secretary of agriculture (Sonny Perdue, an avid hunter), and farm bureaus and ranchers, this longtime effort to kill wild creatures is killing off life on earth. Farm bureaus facilitate poisoning our food systems with chemical soups wiping out birds, bees, insects, bats and amphibians throughout the network of life. Dirty-energy billionaires are in control of the federal government. Legislators have focused great efforts on opening former wildlife refuges to lead shot and shooting ranges and are hellbent on killing the few wolves left that might balance CWD, bubonic plague, Lyme disease, and artificially high populations of deer and elk — farmed, of course for heads on walls.

Wyoming courts are set to allow hunters to kill wolves on sight.

The Wisconsin Farm Bureau, upset about that about 2/10ths of 1 percent of livestock are killed by wolves before making it to the slaughterhouse (USDA figures), sent their president, Jim Holte, to petition legislators in Washington to put the Wisconsin DNR in control of the state’s wolves. Ninety-five percent of the livestock that die before the slaughterhouse, die from subsisting in horrific unhealthy conditions, not from attacks by wolves.

The Wisconsin Farm Bureau, upset about that about 2/10ths of 1 percent of livestock are killed by wolves before making it to the slaughterhouse (USDA figures), sent their president, Jim Holte, to petition legislators in Washington to put the Wisconsin DNR in control of the state’s wolves. Ninety-five percent of the livestock that die before the slaughterhouse, die from subsisting in horrific unhealthy conditions, not from attacks by wolves.

The Wisconsin DNR is certainly doing its part to perpetuate wildlife killing. A few years ago hunter enthusiasm was flagging. Although hunters were encouraged to kill from wheelchairs if necessary, they were aging out. Allowing year-round killing seasons and packs of dogs to pursue wildlife keep wildlife watchers from meeting or caring about wildlife.

Four years ago, the DNR started a “more-killing-needed sale” and offered $5 licenses as an incentive to recruit and train new trappers and hunters. Over the past four years, women were attracted to $5 raccoon mittens and children held up dead trapped animals like stuffed toys. 10,000 new trappers were trained and wildlife from our woods headed to Toronto auctions as Chinese and Russian supply dwindled due to their woods emptying.

Even with 60 percent of large mammals now threatened with extinction, and six of the eight species of bears on the endangered list for over a decade, 109,000 applicants to kill black bears in Wisconsin is the norm. The DNR says more wolves and bears exist, based on anecdotal evidence. They plan to allow hunters to kill another 5,000 bears this fall, mostly spring cubs and yearlings. It is a half-million-dollar-a-year bear sale.

Meanwhile the Vatican met recently, and is evidently on the creator’s side. The Pontifical Academy of Sciences held a “Workshop on Biological Extinction: How to Save the Natural World on Which We Depend.” They find: “Among the changes that are detrimental to the continued existence of biodiversity are the clearing of land for agriculture and urban development; the introduction of alien species, including weeds, pests, and pathogens worldwide, for the last 500 years, at a dizzying rate; hunting and gathering animals and plants at an unsustainable rate for consumption, building materials, or as medicine; and global climate change.”

The PAS president stated recently, “The question is now not so much how our children and grandchildren will fare, but whether the world will be able to function sustainably during the remainder of our own lives.”

Petition to stop trophy-hunting of giraffes here.

Contact legislators here against Alaska opening national refuges to shooting hibernating bears with their cubs, shooting grizzly bears from airplanes, killing wolves and their pups in dens, and the use of steel jaw traps and wire neck snares.

This column was originally published in the Madison CapTimes on March 12, 2017.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on March 30, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Patricia Randolph’s Madravenspeak: The fatal ‘con’ in conservation

IMG_0055

Chris Pousser, Freeimages.com

“(T)he wild creatures inhabiting our world are every bit as much the sentient beings we humans are.” ~ Richard Thiel, retired DNR wolf biologist, forward to “Wild Wolves We Have Known”.

Cathy Stepp, DNR secretary, who campaigned for Donald Trump, leads the DNR in an anti-science crusade, dumping science, along with life on earth, into the trash bin. In a January interview with the Wisconsin State Journal, she said she would be glad if the Trump administration “dials down ‘strangling’ federal requirements that have been imposed on the DNR.”

She has presided over scrubbing the DNR website of climate change science and has weakened regulations of concentrated animal farms polluting Wisconsin waters, hunting and trapping, and established a free-for-all for running packs of dogs on our wildlife.

The federal government is purging its website as well. A Humane Society Legislative Fund petition, “I Will Stand and Fight for Animals!,” says, “The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) abruptly purged its website of documents and records related to enforcement of the Animal Welfare Act and Horse Protection Act, essentially covering for puppy mills, roadside zoos, and other animal abusers.”

The same petition reports that the Republican-controlled House of Representatives “voted to overturn a rule that prohibits killing wolf pups in their dens, spotting grizzly bears from aircraft and then shooting them after landing, and other cruel forms of trophy hunting on Alaska’s national wildlife (so-called) refuges.”

This is Republican “conservation” — the “con” being the destruction and hatred of all that is natural and sacred.

The grand “con” is the exclusion of the 90 percent of the citizens who pay for public lands and have zero say in governing them or in any decisions about wildlife. That is and always has been the exclusive dictatorship of the hunters and trappers, who are 10 percent of the public. Funding the agency from killing licenses is the game and total control of wildlife and public lands by those who destroy life is the shame.

The absurdity that the DNR calls “science” includes just asking trappers how many animals they killed, how many they think are left to be killed, and what methods each used in trapping. This is absurdly bogus. Trappers have every incentive to overestimate the “stock” of animals left so that they can keep killing, and every incentive to under-report their kill, especially of endangered species, pets and birds. The DNR survey states that 8,000 trappers actively trapped — described as 40 percent of the 20,000 trappers trained by the state. Of those who responded, 7.1 percent reported that they used snares. Twelve percent reported that they caught an average of 2.5 dogs and “released” them. (One wonders how many half dogs were released.)

Trapping in 2015-16 was down from the year before, as seen on page 5 of the Wisconsin DNR Fur Trapper Survey. 341,757 animals were trapped and a quarter of trappers hunted the same animals and shot another 35,733 foxes, coyotes, and raccoons. The total 377,490 animals (reported anecdotally) equates to an average 47 animals killed by each trapper.

That’s Republican job creation, but it turns out that the trapper pays much more than he gains. The Wisconsin Fur Buyers Report states that the total pelt value for 2015-16 was estimated at a little over $1.25 million. 284,395 skins were reported sold by Wisconsin trappers, two-thirds to out-of-state buyers.

Multiply 47 animals killed by each trapper times $4.43, and each trapper took in an average of $208.21.

The DNR report, eager to tout the contribution to the economy of clearing the woods of life, says, “The average trapper incurred $318.50 of expenses on such things as traps, lures, gas, and a license.” That means that it cost each trapper over $100 more than each earned as revenue, plus spending a reported “5 million trap nights” or 625 trap hours per trapper.

None of this makes any sense. Little money, lots of time. Obscene suffering caused

Born Free, an organization fighting to end trapping, “has documented through a comprehensive review of scientific literature that trapped animals may suffer severe physical injury, psychological trauma, thirst, hypothermia, and predation. They may remain in traps for days or longer before dying or being killed — often by bludgeoning so as not to damage the animal’s valuable pelt.”

Michael Moore has offered up to 10 ways to fight back. Number one is essential. As regularly as you brush your teeth, “THE DAILY CALL: You must call Congress every day. Yes – YOU! 202-225-3121. It will take just TWO MINUTES! Make it part of your daily routine, one of those five things you do every morning without even thinking about it.”

Call to save our wolves. Call to end trapping. Call to end the hunting war on wildlife and war on other people. Call to demand action to curtail climate change and mass extinction. Call to save life on earth and our own species. Light the fuses now and keep them burning every day.

Please sign and network these two petitions:

Petition to stop the Air Force from dropping bombs on hundreds of whales and dolphins near the Hawaiian Islands.

Petition to ban trophy hunting of the last 700 grizzly bears in Yellowstone.

Originally published in the Madison CapTimes on February 26, 2017.

 
2 Comments

Posted by on March 17, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Patricia Randolph’s Madravenspeak: Canned lion hunts an example of human cruelty

img_0045

Photo by Dave Richards. See his website at onsafari.co.ke/

“When I get over on the other side, I shall use my influence to have the human race drowned again, and this time drowned good, no omissions, no ark.” — Mark Twain, “On the Damned Human Race”

There will be no God’s mandate for an ark this time. Man is taking the rest of life out with him. Steve Bannon and Donald Trump are giving what Chris Hedges calls a “Christianized fascist” push to planetary extinction and climate chaos.

Man’s dominion turned domination of other animals is a Christian perversion. One can choose what one wants from the Bible. My hunter neighbor tells me, “There are animal sacrifices in the Bible — we are supposed to kill them.”

Most religions do make man the center of the universe.

Driving into Madison early on a Saturday morning, I listened to a BBC hour devoted to parsing out the plans of Bannon, power beside the throne. They referenced various statements by Bannon working “to blow up the establishment” with his method being constant chaos. Bannon is quoted as saying, under his plan, they can rule for 50 years.

Rule what is left. Some short lives are focused on delusions of power.

Man has had a substantial run of ruling the planet. It is a story of destruction, cruelty and failure. Humans are so out of balance that we have caged and fenced most of the other species of any size or utility by the billions: laboratories, feedlots, factory farms, puppy mills, pet trade. Wild animals — deer, turkeys, bears, coyotes, wolves, crows, ducks, mourning doves — are shot or bled out by men who enjoy killing just about anybody large enough to hit. Fur “bearers” suffer the obscene torture of trapping. Oceans, predicted to be fish-less by 2048, are trawled and long-lined, with billions of tons of “by-catch” tossed back dead into plastic-polluted waters acidifying with warming.

The figure I have heard in illegal wildlife trade is $22 billion, but since it is hidden, it is hard to calculate. What is sure is that with 60 percent of large mammals threatened with extinction, the market for them has gone ballistic — both in legalized killing and illegal trade. Demand for lions, tigers, giraffes, elephants, cheetahs, wolverines, jaguars, leopards, wolf species including gray wolves, and bears is spiking.

The skeletons of 800 lions are scheduled to be shipped from South Africa to the Far East to be used in folk medicine. The bones are the remains of captive lions killed in fenced hunting enclosures on farms raising 6,000 to 8,000 lions for “hunters” to kill as they are paraded out in front of them. Last year an attempt to protect lions at the Convention of International Trade in Endangered Species failed.

The 20,000 free-roaming lions remaining in Africa are threatened by hunting and the Asian trade, now replacing tiger bones with lions, as both species hurtle toward extinction. Botswana stopped all lion hunting in 2013 because of precipitous decline in lion populations.

South Africa’s private lion breeding business practices encourage cub petting and pictures and then pricey canned hunting as the cubs grow larger (like farm petting zoos’ connection to slaughterhouses). There are pictured catalogs for the male lions: $30,000, $28,500, $25,500, and on down. Females can be killed for $7,000. Prices include accommodations, packing and shipping, transportation and cash bar available (for bragging rituals).

In “Blood Lions” and “Dead Lion Walking,” documentary-makers investigate the canned lion hunting industry, citing hundreds of the captive animals shot by wealthy hunters every year in a business worth millions of dollars.

The Department of Natural Resources has its own captive wildlife breeding facilities. Over 400,000 non-native pheasants are hand-raised annually to be thrown out the day before the pheasant hunt. The Boys and Girls Club of Janesville’s annual fenced pheasant kill fundraiser, held this year on Saturday, Feb. 11, teaches young people that benefiting from killing tame birds is normal and acceptable.

The DNR licenses canned hounding facilities, thinly veiling killing wildlife with dogs for fun, seven days a week, 16 hours a day. The wildlife who suffer and die in these local facilities are foxes, raccoons, rabbits, coyotes, bobcats and baby bears. The DNR cares so little for our wildlife that they do not even enforce Legislature-mandated quarterly reports, nor do they look at them.

In his call to resistance, “Make America Ungovernable,” Chris Hedges describes the Trump/Bannon regime of “Christianized fascism” as venerating “a demented hypermasculinity that includes a sacralization of violence, misogyny, a disdain for empathy.”

Mark Twain said it this way, “I bring you the stately nation named Christendom, returning bedraggled, besmirched and dishonored … with her soul full of meanness, her pocket full of boodie, and her mouth full of hypocrisies. Give her soap and towels but hide the looking glass.”

Sign a petition to save wolves.

This column was originally published in the Madison CapTimes on February 15, 2017.

 
2 Comments

Posted by on February 21, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Patricia Randolph’s Madravenspeak: Get active now to save Wisconsin’s wolves

img_0044

BING IMAGES

A young wolf

“Native Americans were certain that wolves and many other creatures were people.” ~ John Vucetich, Michigan wolf biologist

Richard Thiel, retired Wisconsin DNR wolf biologist, debuted “Wild Wolves We Have Known: Stories of Wolf Biologists’ Favorite Wolves” at the International Wolf Symposium held in Duluth, Minnesota, in 2013. Twenty-three wolf biologists wrote stories about their experiences working with wolves — work that transformed them into wolf advocates.

The introduction, written by John Vucetich, is a call to human empathy, invoking the moral obligation of man to recognize the fellow humanity of wolves. He writes how knowing individual wolves changed his own life. While acknowledging that humans possess capabilities that wolves do not, he writes: “But it is an entirely separate concern to ask, is a wolf a person?” He poses that wolf possessing these traits — “sensory consciousness, memory, dreams, intentions, personality, emotions — certainly qualifies as being an actor in the world, as the experiencer of a life.” He affirms, “It is perfectly right to treat our dogs as people.”

Vucetich documents that wolves, who are extremely loyal to family, lose one in four family members to death every year of their lives. He adds, “Trust me — just as your family dog knows when you are gone for the weekend, so too does a wolf experience a missing sibling or parent.”

Suffering is a commonality among species.

The word “hierarchy” derives from the Middle English word “ierarchie,” meaning “order of holy beings.” Vucetich: “Developing a healthy relationship with this ‘order of holy beings’ is quite a challenge. One great development in this relationship was the widespread realization, during the 20th century, that humans are not the only kind of organism that deserves our moral consideration…. Not so much because it serves us to treat the non-human world well (which it does), but for its own sake.”

He points out that wildlife are treated as “populations” to be managed, denying individual animals any significant value. He says: “Another approach is to deny that populations and ecosystems have any significant value.”

Vucetich continues that too often we are “harming innocent manifestations of life to pay the price for (our) harming some other manifestation of life. Do two wrongs really make it right? This relationship with the great hierarchy of life is perverse…. I do not know precisely what that (healthier) relationship should look like, but I’m pretty sure it involves greater respect for life at each level in the great hierarchy. And the solution almost certainly involves better understanding of individual organisms.”

This awakening, calling for our moral responsibility to fellow beings, is new within the scientific community. Citing the intensely social lives of wolves, Paul Paquet, a Canadian wolf biologist, states bluntly that it is immoral to kill wolves, period.

Randy Jurewicz, a Wisconsin wolf biologist, recently retired from the DNR and is now free to say that wolves do not “need” to be hunted at all since their populations are self-limiting.

Wisconsin U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin, a Democrat, has joined Wisconsin’s Republican U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson in co-sponsoring Johnson’s Senate bill to remove Endangered Species Act protections from Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota and Wyoming wolves: H.R. 424 and S.164.

In Wisconsin, delisting would mean using packs of dogs and traps — anything goes for killing combinations.

Eight of nine Wisconsin citizens polled in a 2013 Mason-Dixon poll do not want wolves hunted, and nine in 10 oppose the use of bait, traps, and packs of dogs to trophy kill wolves.

Who is Baldwin representing?

Repeated emails requesting an interview with Baldwin and Freedom of Information Act inquiries into how much funding she receives from hunting organizations and the NRA got no response.

I spoke directly to Rep. Mark Pocan, D-Madison, asking him how we could protect our wolves. He replied, “Double down on calling your senators and representatives and organize.” He cited the women’s march on Washington and the coalitions being built to resist the destructive aggression of the Republican takeover.

The DNR has forsaken all credibility by scrubbing its website of climate change references and purging the wolf committee of all humane representation on wolves’ behalf. The incompetence of the Trump administration described by Paul Krugman is also applicable to the DNR: “Blind ideology, blind loyalty, contempt for knowledge, nuance and expertise, and lack of ethics are the values…”

The Center for Biological Diversity issued a press release and video including this quote: “The new Congress is the most extreme and anti-wolf our country has ever seen, and members wasted no time in attacking endangered wildlife,” said Collette Adkins, a senior attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity. “This bill promises to undo hard-earned progress toward gray wolf recovery that has taken years to achieve. Without federal protection hundreds of wolves in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan will once again suffer and die every year.”

Citizens can send a letter opposing this legislation from the center’s website.

Please network that it is urgent to call Ron Johnson (202-224-5323 or via his website), Tammy Baldwin (202-224-5653 or via her website), and Rep. Sean Duffy, R-District 7, co-author of the house bill (202-225-3365) voicing vehement opposition to these political, anti-science bills.

Organize with wolf advocates. Hold wolves in your hearts and act now.

Originally published in the Madison CapTimes on January 29, 2017.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on February 18, 2017 in Uncategorized