After the spear hunt: We must fight to protect Canada’s iconic bears

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/after-the-spear-outrage-we-must-fight-to-protect-canadas-iconic-bears/article31447415/?utm_source=Shared+Article+Sent+to+User&utm_medium=E-mail:+Newsletters+/+E-Blasts+/+etc.&utm_campaign=Shared+Web+Article+Links
by JULIUS STRAUSS
Contributed to The Globe and Mail
Published Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2016 3:34PM EDT
Strauss is a B.C.-based bear viewing guide and member of the Commercial Bear Viewing Association

The killing of a black bear by a U.S. hunter with a spear this week in Alberta has caused public outrage.

What has shocked is not so much the cruelty involved – the bear survived its initial injuries and ran off into the forest only to die later – but that the bear had been baited, and the act was legal.
The hunter, Josh Bowmar from Ohio, went on to celebrate the feat by posting a video of the killing on YouTube replete with footage from a GoPro he had attached to the spear.

Another hunter said Mr. Bowmar had “cojones” for being willing to approach the bear on foot, as it rummaged around a baited barrel that had been put out specifically for the purpose.

For a small minority, such a feat is something to crow about on social media.

Whether it is the trophy hunting of grizzly bears in British Columbia or the spear-hunting of a baited black bear in Alberta, there are sites on the internet that pore over the details of the kill, boasting of the endeavour.

Increasingly, however, there is a chasm between this small minority and the rest of Canadians who see such practices as outdated and morally repugnant.

Alberta banned the grizzly hunt more than a decade ago after the number of bears in the province fell to dangerously low numbers. But it still sanctions hunting black bears with bait.

In neighbouring British Columbia, trophy hunters still shoot between 250 and 300 grizzly bears a year. In B.C. the arguments against grizzly hunting have become increasingly persuasive in recent years.

Bear-viewing, a growing industry in which tourists pay to visit specialized lodges where they can safely watch wild bears, is now worth more than ten times to the province what grizzly hunting is.

A recent poll found overwhelming opposition: around 90 per cent of British Columbians have said they want to see grizzly hunting banned.

The government has so far stuck to its guns, so to speak. It maintains that the hunt is scientifically sustainable.

But even that argument took a blow recently when official figures showed that a hunted population in the Southern Rockies had dropped by 40 per cent in less than decade under government management.

As provincial elections near in British Columbia – they are due next spring – both the NDP and the Liberals have been jockeying for position with the electorate.

The arguments over whether grizzly hunting in B.C. should be allowed to continue, and whether black bears in Alberta should be baited and killed with spears, are raging in small circles.

Environmentalists are understandably furious with present policies and some warn that without change certain bears populations will disappear forever.

Trophy hunters fear that any erosion of their rights to shoot bears will lead to a wholesale onslaught by the government on their rural lifestyles.

Wildlife managers, meanwhile, spend days in endless meetings debating minute changes to hunting zones, seasons and what they term allowable harvest.

Meanwhile, out in the real world, attitudes have changed.

Many Canadians were incensed last year when a U.S. dentist shot Cecil, a prized African lion, who was lured out of a protected area and killed for its pelt.

They are ready to accept culling in areas where animals overpopulate, but bears never do that because their biology means that they have fewer cubs in times of poor food availability. Most would certainly condone killing an animal in self-defense.

Alberta has now promised to ban spear hunting – but that’s not enough. The concept of killing a bear – an animal that is so iconic – just so its skin can adorn a sofa is something the majority now finds unacceptable.

It’s time that Canada did better by its bears.

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Animal rights activists upset over man killing bear with a spear

http://www.guns.com/2016/08/16/animal-rights-activists-upset-over-man-killing-bear-with-a-spear-video/

(VIDEO)

 

An American who carried out a hunt in Canada is facing the wrath of animal rights activists after he posted a video capturing the kill on YouTube.

Josh Bowmar, who lives in Ohio, used a spear to slay a black bear, which is legal in Canada. Bowmar was immediately met with criticism after posting the video, but he was also quick to fire right back.

Masha Kalinina, of Humane Society International, said the animal was “heartlessly slaughtered for fun.”

“No-one could argue there is any skill involved here, no exhibition of hunting prowess, and certainly this has nothing to do with conservation as trophy hunters often argue,” Kalinina added. “This is pure selfish blood lust, a desire for a thrill and a trophy at the expense of an innocent life.”

Bowmar, however, ensured that the bear, which he described as “extremely nutritious,” was not wasted in any way. Likewise, Bowmar said those scoffing at his hunt should be ashamed of themselves for “for trying to kill a heritage that has existed for over a million years.”

Not only that, Bowmar detailed the skill involved in such a hunt, despite Kalinina’s claim that there was none involved.

[ The Mirror ]

Death Toll Update

PETITION UPDATE

Peace for Geese Project

AUG 16, 2016 — Wildlife Services killed 578 geese in King County and 287 on Lake Washington in 2015. Shooting has become their preferred method of killing, but they also conducted two round-ups on Lake Washington where they gassed to death geese and their goslings. The numbers for 2016 will not be available until next year.

In a report to members of the Interlocal Agreement, Wildlife Services stated that they hazed and harassed 3,892 geese in King County. The techniques used included “working dogs, boats, paintballs, and firearms.”

In a decreasing trend, egg addling dropped to just 292 eggs. Clearly, egg addling is not a priority. It is obviously much easier to shoot geese or round them up and gas them instead of addling eggs to prevent their development.

Exact details concerning Wildlife Services killing in the Puget Sound area and Washington State Parks continues to be either non-existent or sketchy at best.

The report also stated “2015 represented the 29th year of Urban Waterfowl Management efforts in the greater Seattle area.” In a vicious cycle of killing, year after year, geese continue to be killed in our parks. And of course, few if any members of the Interlocal Agreement will take any responsibility for the killing. They seem to think that they are not responsible for the killing even though they have all collectively paid for it under the agreement.

Members of the 2015 agreement included: Washington State Parks, Seattle, Bellevue, Kent, Kirkland, Mountlake Terrace, Renton, SeaTac, Woodinville, Port of Seattle – Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, Tacoma MetroParks, Tukwila, and the University of Washington.

Data released by the United States Department of Agriculture shows that Wildlife Services destroyed over 2.7 million animals in 2014. It is time to stop the war on wildlife!

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Zero Percent Contained — Blue Cut Fire Explodes to 30,000 Acres, Forces 82,000 People to Flee

robertscribbler

Rising temperatures. Deepening drought. Worsening wildfires. Such are sadly the new climate realities for the State of California in a record hot world.

*****

Yesterday, amid 100 degree heat, blustery winds, and on the back of a devastating drought that is about to complete its fifth year, a dangerous wildfire sparked in the Canjon Pass in San Bernardino County. Originating near highway 15 at 10:30 AM Tuesday, the blaze fed on the heat, strong winds, and bone-dry brush. In just two hours, the fire had exploded to 1,500 acres in size. Fanning out, it began to threaten homes and buildings within this well-known section of Southern California.

(Tuesday feed tracking the early hours of the Blue Cut fire provided by CBS News on Youtube.)

By early afternoon, emergency officials were scrambling to get ahead of the fire. More than 750 firefighters were mobilized as neighborhood after neighborhood emptied…

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Grizzly Group Takes Aim at Trophy Hunting, Sets Sights on Provincial Election Candidates

Above the stone fireplace in the comfortable Saanich home, photos of grizzly bears are pinned in a casual collage.

Cubs are shown frolicking in the grass, a curious bear stands on his hind legs looking through a camera lens and, jarringly, at the top, is a massive grizzly lying lifeless in the grass, eyes closed, claws digging into the dirt, as two jubilant hunters smile into the camera.

The photo, typical of those found in hunting magazines that promote the chance to travel to Super, Natural B.C. to kill grizzles, provokes a visceral response among hunt opponents and a newly-formed group wants to harness that gut reaction.

Justice for B.C. Grizzlies is led by a small core of volunteers who, for years, have tried to end the trophy hunt by arguing the facts — such as the uncertainty of population numbers, studies that show bear viewing generates far more in visitor spending than bear hunting and — what should be the clincher for politicians, but, curiously seems to be ignored — polls clearly demonstrate that British Columbians are overwhelmingly against the hunt.

In the leadup to next spring’s provincial election, the group is aiming for hearts and minds by asking B.C. voters and political candidates to consider the hunt from a moral and ethical stance.

We are the moral high ground. We are not the scientists,” said Barb Murray, who has fought against the hunt for more than a decade.

We can speak with our hearts…We all have a heart and a brain and we know wrong from right. Tweet: ‘We just have to stand up & be counted and make our politicians be accountable to the majority’ http://bit.ly/2bkTYEX #bcpoli #trophyhuntWe just have to stand up and be counted and make our politicians be accountable to the majority on this ethical issue.”

The hunt is outdated and archaic, pointed out supporter Val Murray.

It’s 2016, and stopping the hunt is morally and ethically right,” she said.

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Justice for B.C Grizzlies will officially launch in September and members will then start the hard work of pinning down politicians and candidates and bending the ears of friends and neighbours.

Supporters will be asked to sign a pledge to actively lobby to end the hunt, and ask candidates in their riding where they stand.

The group will work alongside others fighting the same battle, such as Raincoast Conservation, the David Suzuki Foundation and Pacific Wild, but will take a different approach in hopes of attracting those who have not thought about the morality of killing an apex predator — listed as a species of special concern by the federal Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada — in order to put a head on a wall or rug on the floor.

In 2001, in the dying days of the NDP government, a moratorium was imposed on trophy hunting until more scientific data could be compiled, but, as soon as Gordon Campbell’s BC Liberals were elected, the moratorium was rescinded.

That decision has stuck, despite the growing distaste of British Columbians and a 2004 European Union ban on imports of all B.C. grizzly parts after an analysis found the hunt was unsustainable.

Polls show the number of people who oppose the hunt is steadily growing, with an October 2015 Insights West poll finding that 91 per cent of British Columbians and 84 per cent of Albertans say they oppose hunting animals for sport. The margin of error for B.C. is plus or minus 3.1 per cent.

Along the way, hunt opponents have gathered some high profile support, including Martyn Brown, former chief of staff to Gordon Campbell and former deputy minister of tourism, trade and investment.

Brown agrees that putting pressure on politicians and political candidates is the way to “make the B.C. government bow to the wishes of the 91 per cent of British Columbians who say they don’t support it.”

Grizzly Group Takes Aim at Trophy Hunting, Sets Sights on Provincial Election Candidates http://www.desmog.ca/2016/08/15/grizzly-group-takes-aim-trophy-hunting-sets-sights-provincial-election-candidates  @christyclarkbc

Photo published for Grizzly Group Takes Aim at Trophy Hunting, Sets Sights on Provincial Election Candidates

Grizzly Group Takes Aim at Trophy Hunting, Sets Sights on Provincial Election Candidates

Above the stone fireplace in the comfortable Saanich home, photos of grizzly bears are pinned in a casual collage.

desmog.ca

  • Smog Canada, Brown wrote “In our hearts, most of us know that the grisly business of trophy hunting is not right. Rather, it demeans us as the planet’s apex species.”

So, why does the Christy Clark Liberal government insist on continuing the hunt?

The two main arguments are that the grizzly population is healthy, with an estimated 15,000 bears, and the hunt puts money into the economy.

But government estimates of population numbers are based on models and expert opinions, not a count of bears, and many researchers believe numbers are much lower — possibly in the 6,000 range — and kills much higher than the approximately 300 grizzlies killed by hunters each year that the province reports.

A study by Raincoast Conservation Foundation, Simon Fraser University, University of Victoria and the Hakai Institute, which analyzed 35 years of grizzly mortality data, found kill limits are regularly exceeded.

At least nine sub-populations of grizzlies in B.C are on the verge of disappearing and, in addition to the hunt, grizzlies face disappearing habitat, poachers, and vehicle collisions.

The current hunt subjects grizzly populations to considerable risk. Substantial overkills have occurred repeatedly and might be worse than thought because of the many unknowns in management,” Raincoast biologist Kyle Artelle said after the study was published in the peer-reviewed journal PLOS ONE.

Following the Raincoast study the David Suzuki Foundation and the University of Victoria Environmental Law Centre requested an investigation by Auditor General Carol Bellringer, who agreed to look at whether the province is effectively managing the grizzly bear population.

Bellringer is expected to issue a report in the spring and hunt opponents are crossing their fingers it will be released before the election.

They are also hoping that the departure of Energy and Mines Minister Bill Bennett, who has said he will not run in the election, will help their cause.

Bennett, a key member of Clark’s cabinet, has been a strong supporter of the hunt.

On the financial front, a study by the Center for Responsible Travel, in conjunction with Stanford University, found that, in 2012, bear-viewing groups in the Great Bear Rainforest generated “more than 12 times more in visitor spending than bear hunting.”

Bear-watching also directed $7.3-million to government coffers compared to $660,500 from hunters and created 510 jobs a year compared to 11 jobs created by guide outfitters.

The overwhelming conclusion is that bear viewing in the Great Bear Rainforest generates far more value to the economy, both in terms of total visitor expenditures and gross domestic product and provides greater employment opportunities and returns to government than does bear hunting,” says the study.

However the Guide Outfitters Association of B.C. is a powerful lobby and a generous contributor to the Liberal Party.

Between 2011 and May 2015 the association contributed almost $37,000 to the Liberal Party and a little over $6,000 to theNDP.

Jefferson Bray, owner of the Great Bear Chalet, in the Bella Coola Valley, in a letter to Bellringer, wrote “This global obscenity continues because it is lobbied, bought and paid for.”

Although the Guide Outfitters Association of B.C. is the voice of those arguing to keep the grizzly hunt, the bulk of softer support comes from hunters who belong to the B.C. Wildlife Federation, who are afraid the end of the grizzly hunt would be the thin end of the wedge, said Barb Murray.

But Justice for B.C Grizzlies has no problem with those who hunt for food and the group has hunters among its’ supporters, she emphasized.

I am a hunter and I have never shot a bear,” said David Lawrie, a former forests engineer with the B.C. government and an inaugural member of Justice for B.C. Grizzlies.

And, when it comes to the government being capable of providing us with the number of bears, I don’t believe it. They can’t even provide us with the number of trees in the annual allowable cut and trees don’t walk,” Lawrie said.

This summer, the Wildlife Federation supported a call by Green Party leader Andrew Weaver to require trophy hunters to pack out edible meat from grizzly bears, but the support was immediately dismissed by hunt opponents.

If Weaver’s bill is somehow approved, most of the muscles of the bears will be transported out of the bush and dumped into landfills in B.C. and beyond, while their heads and hides will continue to be transformed into rugs for living rooms and prizes for trophy rooms, “ Raincoast executive director Chris Genovali and Raincoast guide outfitter coordinator Brian Falconer wrote in an op-ed in the Times Colonist.

Weaver’s bill died when the session ended and a Green Party spokesman said Thursday that, ideally, Weaver wants to see a complete ban on grizzly trophy hunting in B.C.

As the government made it clear that is not on the cards, Andrew tabled the bill as an interim measure with the goal of making trophy hunting more costly and regulated, especially for out-of-province hunters,” Mat Wright said in an email.

The major hope for reversing the legislation lies with the NDP and, so far, the party has not decided where it is going with the contentious issue.

Environment critic George Heyman said in an interview that discussions have taken place in caucus and will continue once summer vacation is over.

We will be letting people know our decision before the election,” said Heyman.

We understand that over 90 per cent of British Columbians oppose it and we are taking it very seriously,” he said.

It is obvious many British Columbians do not trust the government’s numbers and conservation is the first principle for theNDP, Heyman said.

We understand the importance of conserving this iconic species and we will make a responsible decision,” he said.

Which is exactly what Justice for B.C. Grizzlies wants to see.

Image: Princess Lodges via Flickr

Powerful Cyclone to Blow Hole in Thinning Arctic Sea Ice

robertscribbler

Back in 2012, a powerful Arctic cyclone smashed the sea ice with days of wind and powerful waves. This year, a storm that’s nearly as powerful threatens to make a similar mark on late-season melt. With a very unstable Arctic weather pattern in play, there’s an outlier possibility the dynamic is setting up for something even more dramatic by late August.

****

Earlier today, a strong gale roared up out of the Laptev Sea north of central Siberia. Feeding on the abnormally warm, moist air over the Barents Sea and the hot air over northwestern Siberia, the storm collided with comparatively cold air over the central Arctic. The differences between hot/cold and damp/dry air can really bomb out a storm system.

Arctic Cyclone

(Storms, heat and moisture feed up through a high-amplitude wave in the Jet Stream over northern Europe and Siberia and into a developing Arctic cyclone over the Laptev Sea during…

View original post 1,055 more words

For Louisiana, the Rains of Climate Change Fall Hard — More Heavy Storms Expected to Hit Central U.S.

robertscribbler

Imagine, for a moment, that the Earth’s atmosphere is simply a big storm-generating engine. Imagine that the ignition trigger for this engine comes in the form of heat rising off the land and ocean surface. And imagine that the engine’s fuel is water vapor evaporated by that heat.

Keep the level of heat and water vapor constant, and you’ll get a continuous, steady stream of storms firing off. But increase the heat and water vapor content, as we have over the past 137 or so years, and the storms that engine produces become a whole hell of a lot more powerful.

In this context, in the last few days record atmospheric and ocean-surface heat helped to produce some of the highest water vapor levels ever recorded over Louisiana. This extreme moisture content, in turn, sparked some of the worst flooding ever seen for the state. From the Pacific Standard:

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Young Tumps Go a-hunting Again

Trump brothers’ hunting trip a cautionary tale on animal rights

Trump brothers’ hunting trip a cautionary tale on animal rights

Donald Trump’s sons are going hunting again.

Evidence of their previous exploits have made the rounds on the internet.

One of the most disturbing images was that of Donald Jr. posing for a photo with an elephant tail in one hand and a knife in the other. Most Americans are against big game trophy hunting (86 percent disapprove, with nearly 60% claiming it should illegal), but this photo provoked particular outrage.

And how could it not? Elephants are some of the most sophisticated and interesting creatures God has made. Everyone knows about their amazing memories and intelligence, but did you know they recognize themselves in a mirror, thus proving self-awareness? That they develop deep friendships, not only with each other, but sometimeswith other animals?

Did you know they even mourn their dead, returning to the grave-sites of deceased relatives and friends to handle their bones?

For the last couple generations, animal activists have blamed religious traditions as bearing particular responsibility for ideas and practices which could lead to treating these animals as mere things to do with as we please. But this couldn’t be further from the truth, and even animal activists like Peter Singer now see religious traditions as allies in the fight for animal protection.

This is not surprising when we consider that gross mistreatment of animals took place long before religion was on the scene in the development of Homo sapiens, and it is driven today mostly by what Pope Francis calls the secular “use and throw-away culture.”

There is no sense in which our secular culture formed the Trump boys to understand that these creatures are gifts from God, and that God limits our use of them to such that it fits within a divine plan.

No, instead animals are understood to be mere things or products bought and sold in a marketplace. If you’ve got the money-as the Trumps surely do-then you can even use elephants and throw them away.

I’ve tried to raise awareness about how the Roman Catholic moral tradition critiques contemporary practices when it comes to how we treat animals, but I’ve focused mostly on how we eat. The one good thing to come of the Trump bros killing these animals is that it has raised cultural awareness with regard to a different set of practices.

It is interesting to note that the Church has, over the centuries, fairly consistently condemned sport hunting of animals as against God’s plan for creation. Recall that in the first pages of the Bible, all animals (human and non-human) in Eden were vegetarian, and animals were brought to Adam “because it was not good man should be alone.”

After sin enters the world, God gives limited permission to eat animals in Genesis 9, but early Christians understood that this permission did not extend to other practices. Recall, for instance, that Christians were forbidden from attending the Roman games when animals were slaughtered merely for the blood-thirsty entertainment of the crowd.

In Jerome’s commentary on Psalm 90, he equated Esau’s sinfulness with his being a hunter, and claimed that in “the Holy Scriptures we do not find any saints who are hunters.” St. Cyril of Jerusalem specifically called sport hunting “the pomp of the devil,” and urged fellow Christians to avoid even watching it, much less participating in it.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that Catholics may use animals for things like food and clothing, but with two important restrictions. First, we must treat animals with kindness. Second, we must never “needlessly” cause them to suffer or die.

Whatever one thinks about the broader discussion of how we treat animal protection, and more complex questions about the morality of our eating habits, the morality of sport hunting is cut and dried. Because it is done for entertainment, and not anything remotely resembling need, it is immoral. Period. End of story.

The Catholic Church is a powerful witness to the protection of vulnerable and voiceless life in other moral and legal contexts. We should also honor the parts of our tradition and teaching, which call us to be a voice for the vulnerable and voiceless animals killed by the likes of the Trump brothers.

B.C. Black Bear

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/coquitlam-fines-bear-attract
ants-1.3719678> Be bear aware: Pick ripe fruits from trees or pay a fine,
says City of Coquitlam to property owners

A 10-year-old girl is in hospital with critical injuries after a bear attack
in Port Coquitlam, B.C., Saturday.

Conservation Office inspector Murray Smith said the girl was attacked by a
female black bear with her cub.

The incident took place near Shaughnessy Street and Lincoln Avenue at about
5 p.m. PT., according to B.C. Ambulance, not far from a popular trail along
the Coquitlam River that leads to a nearby watershed and wilderness area.

Smith said conservation officers killed the sow when they found her.

“The bear wouldn’t leave the location with a lot of human presence at that
spot, and so the bear was destroyed,” he said.

The cub is still at large, he said, and people are being asked to stay away
from the area for the time being.

Smith said the officers are looking into the bear and cub’s conflict history
to see if they had exhibited a loss of fear of humans. Depending on what
they discover, the cub may also be killed.

He said it wasn’t yet clear what had provoked the attack.

“These situations are very challenging for everyone involved,” he said. “We
want to make sure that we keep bears wild and we don’t let them get too
comfortable in our communities.”

He reminded residents in the area to remove attractants like garbage and
fruit from trees.

.
<http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/coquitlam-fines-bear-attract
ants-1.3719678> Coquitlam ‘bears’ down on residents who leave out wildlife
attractants

blackbearcubs

Cows, Culture and the Search for Wildness in the American West

http://us7.campaign-archive2.com/?u=afe7d7387151def1a9ab883cf&id=8d6ec885eb&e=

by Stephen Capra

If one desires today to hike as far as they can away from civilization in the American West, they may find magical vistas and great streams that carry glacial water from our highest peaks. With luck they may see the tracks of a grizzly or hear the howl of a wolf. They may lose any sense of a path or trail, but what they will never lose, short of the boundaries of a National Park, is the constant piles of cow manure or the intersection of bovine that remind the hiker, the explorer, that there is no wildness in the West in 2016, but rather one large continuous stock yard of greed and stupidity, one that is in reality the graveyard of biodiversity.

Summer in the West is beginning to slowly yield to an approaching fall. The cows of the high country are beginning their slow migration across clear streams that come from receding glaciers. Wildlife Services remains busy poisoning, shooting and destroying the wild heart of our of our predator species that were designed to manage and keep in balance that which we call wildlife. Yet, the clowns of the West, those that remain the least evolved- the rancher, continue their occupation of the lands that once sang wildness and conveyed harmony and balance.

Wildness is not simply a word; it is not a place or a construct of the imagination. It is a heartbeat, a realm, a place of perfection that is the collusion of space, wildlife, quiet, sky, earth and water. It is a dimension known to few and treasured by many. Perhaps because it is so special, it is feared. To walk in the land of the grizzly, with a storm raging and cross a river swollen with a recent rain, is to sweat hard and risk, it is to allow yourself the sense of being one with a primordial force, it is the chance to breath and smell and cleanse yourself of the burden of life in a modern world.

Over time the ranching culture has stained our lives in the West. We began with a Native American culture, one that reflected the harmony and freedom that we search for today. In the base fear that defined the Americans of Manifest Destiny, we promoted control, control of a people, control of wildlife, control of wildness. In such an environment, the ranching culture was conceived and flourished. Today the DNA of that misguided venture lives on in our State Game Commissions, in our National Forest and Bureau of Land Management decisions. It is part of the demented culture of trapping and it resonates with so many Western lawmakers in their desire to kill the wildness that is the birthright of all species.

Nowhere is that more obvious, than in our western relationship to the cow. No species has ever defined genocide more clearly; no species has cost us more in blood or treasure.

If we are to ever rekindle the magic that is wildness, it must begin with ending the occupation of our Western lands at the hands of our bovine invaders. We must work to make our lands wild once again and remove the stockyard taint that we find even in our wildest realms. We must stop the slaughter of wolves, bears, coyotes and those species that define wildness at the hands of a people and culture that fears freedom.

We must put large swaths of land off-limits to cattle and clear our waterways of their giant footprint. As the earth cries out for our help, we can with a determined heart transition into a new West. One perhaps closer to the vision of John Wesley Powell, who viewed lands through the prism of watersheds: one that sees our public lands as a shared domain, not a trough for a fear-based group to exploit.
It’s ironic; we began in the West with Eden. Now we must work like never before as the curtain begins to close on our chance, to fix, cajole, fight for and remix that which we have tried so hard to destroy.

The blood that has so saturated our western soil must be the fertilizer that can create a stronger and better future. The culture we have grown up with must be changed, the killing stopped. From what we eat, to how we manage our lands, the shadow cast by the setting sun makes clear, our search for wildness is in jeopardy, but its fate is clearly in our hands.

The time is now to follow the mighty bear to the high ridge and soak in the wildness that is the energy that allows us to fight for a new West.

http://us7.campaign-archive2.com/?u=afe7d7387151def1a9ab883cf&id=8d6ec885eb&e=