Earlier this year the Sportsmen’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement (SHARE) Act (H.R. 2406) passed the US House of Representatives. The sponsor of this bill is Senator Lisa Murkowski, (R-AK), who first introduced it in September, 2015. The SHARE Act is an outright assault on animal welfare and conservation. Having passed the House, it now has reached the floor of the Senate, and, knowing it is extremely controversial, some of members of Congress are trying to bury it within another seemingly harmless Bill. They have attached this extreme anti-wildlife bill as an amendment to the Energy Policy Modernization Act (S.2012). If this bill is passed, the damage to wildlife and conservation will be dramatic and far-reaching.
The Animal Welfare Institute is fighting the passing of this bill, which would be a clear assault on wildlife worldwide. On May 20 they contacted members and humanitarians to ask for their help. Now you can make your voice heard and help stop it by simply clicking on this link and navigating to the “Contact Your Legislators” box to send an email to your State Senator. By simply typing in your address, the name of your senator will pop up. You can even personalize your letters in a box provided by AWI, who will then forward your email for you.
What will the SHARE Act do, should it be passed into legislation? Here’s a quick list:
1. Slaughter of elephants will be ramped up; elephants will lose their current protection by the US Fish and Wildlife Service to crack down on the illegal ivory trade and poaching would multiply.
2. Polar bears will be again under attack. Although they were listed under the Endangered Species Act, the SHARE Act will grant a waiver to trophy hunters to allow importation of polar bear carcasses.
3. Bison living in Grand Canyon National Park would be shot and killed if the National Park Service is compelled to allow this as part of their management plan.
4. Wolves who are federally protected in Wyoming and in the Great Lakes region would have that protection removed, allowing them to be hunted and trapped.
5. Migratory birds would also be allowed to be shot; right now they are protected.
Further, trapping would be defined as a form of hunting. The steel-jawed leg-hold traps and other forms of torturous snares would become legal. This imperils not only wildlife but also public safety and companion animals. There are other parts of this legislation which will jeopardize everything conservationists have long championed. There is nothing ‘sportsman’-like about this Bill, if you truly care about life, animals and the environment. Here again is the link should you wish to voice your opinion to your State senator. AWI is continually fighting against the exploitation of threatened and endangered species, and encourages humane, non-lethal wildlife management.