Your bleeding heart blogs, comments, and photographs of butchered lobos are wasted on those who should be taking notice. In fact these outcries provide a particular and peculiar self-satisfaction to those who participate in this noble sport of wolf hunting…wait.
Sport? I must be clear on the precise meaning of the word before I fling it about. This is only one definition, there are plenty more…most with the same characterization.
Sport: Noun, an activity involving physical exertion and skill in which an individual or team competes in play against another or others equally equipped in an environment designed to provide a level playing arena.
I can’t honestly say that I recall seeing any wolves or wolf videos that showed them in possession of high-powered semi-automatic assault weapons with scopes that can pick out footprints on the moon. To be fair and clear, I’m not saying there aren’t any…just that I haven’t seen them. Come to think of it I’ve never seen a wolf flying a helicopter over a pack of humans in order to “pick off” as many as it could in as little time possible…but then I may have missed that one too.
To truly call this a “sport” we must take the two equally equipped with what nature has provided them combatants and put them in a level playing arena. Any idea what will happen to the unarmed hunter in this scenario? Probably nothing…there are only two documented cases of wolf attacks on humans that resulted in fatality in history but 327 people in America have died at the paws and jaws of domesticated dogs in just the past twenty years. And if you’re a bear or cougar hunter…well, never mind. It’s probably best not to level the playing field.
Man is the only animal that kills for pleasure or “sport” and, surprise of surprises, man doesn’t always restrict himself to other species. Yet it seems we pride ourselves on how far we’ve come from being animals. Ain’t evolution grand? Actually it is…except for those out there that appear to have skipped a rung or two on their way up the ladder. These folks are the braintrusts that will quickly point out the statistics and videos of the harm these noble animals create but are just as quick to debunk outnumbering statistics that justify the wolf’s place in the eco system. In researching the wolf for my new book I watched a lot of videos regarding their behavior and, in doing so, saw many examples of man’s inhumanity, cruelty, and plain ignorance. One video featured a wolf that had been caught in a leg-trap. When the hunter approached, the wolf crawled to its feet and began wagging its tail, sensing a rescuer. Said rescuer had a beer in one hand and a rifle in the other. Three shots were fired, two into the hind quarters inflicting unnecessary pain and finally the third into the head…after an appropriate length of time spent swigging beer, mugging proudly for the camera, and laughing at this poor animal trying to stand. These are images that I know will stay with me forever even though I could never watch them again. Another that will probably haunt me for a while is one where a girl, perhaps five years old, is standing over a raccoon pointing a handgun at its head while Dad encourages her. His voice is clearly heard in the background: “Come on shoot, it’s only an animal….” What kind of father does this? I suppose it would be one that skipped a few rungs. The cruelty that this man shows not only to the animal but to his daughter is unforgivable. Teaching a five-year-old that a life, any life, is worthless is a crime.
Yes I’ve heard the plight of the cattle ranchers in Montana and the like and certainly I would expect they would take measures to protect their stock but this seemingly all-out massacre of wolves is ludicrous. Hunting them into the high ranges by helicopter and slaughtering dozens at a time isn’t about protecting stock, it’s about ego and proving your suspect manhood…crawling into their lairs and shooting or gassing pups isn’t manly or macho, it’s simply killing for no reason…and holding up your prized over-sized phallic black weapon while proudly grinning over a wolf carcass that, at the very least, suffered a countable ten bullet wounds is just plain sick.
The Russian parliament is debating a flat out ban on this type of hunting…they beat us to space and they’re winning this race too. There are countless petitions for people who wish to speak out against this mindless possible extinction, at least one here in British Columbia. It seems that the majority is no longer being as silent on this issue and it’s about bloody time. We can only hope that when society and/or government finally realizes that this world can ill afford to lose yet another species there will still be a species left to save.
Forgive me my introduction, obviously now is not the time to “give it a rest”…I just wanted to get this off my chest and grab your attention…as do these folks:
Stop the British Columbia Wolf Hunt!
Grey Wolves Should be Protected, Not Hunted!
Exposing the Big Game
Good Wolf facebook
Rescue the Mexican Gray Wolf
Wolf Angels facebook
There are, of course, many more sites dedicated to the preservation of the wolf. Take a little time to check some of them out and add your support if you are so inclined…thank you. I shall climb off my soapbox now.