Sunday, March 30, 2008

Wolf Kills To Begin Again

A Yahoo! news story today has spelled out some distressing news about the Gray Wolf.

Gray wolf hunts planned after de-listing

In a remarkable and oft-repeated example of how much the United States Government doesn't care about the sacredness of life, and how much people do care about money, Gray Wolves- once on the endangered and protected list, are now off, and an army of morons is preparing to hunt them back onto the list.

In the Yahoo! story I linked to, there is a pretty telling quote. It reads:

Wildlife biologists estimate there are now 41 breeding pairs in Idaho, in 72 packs. If that number falls below 10 breeding pairs, or 15 during a three-year period, the wolves could be brought back under federal protection.

It's outrageous to me that 15 breeding pairs in Idaho is considered "endangered" for the Gray Wolf, but 41 isn't. One would imagine that they'd be taken off the protected list only after they had expanded in population a bit more. But before these (and many other) perplexing questions are asked, we might as well level the playing field and just say what's really going on: these proud and powerful creatures, whose spirit has been part of the continent of North America since time immemorial, are a danger to the contrived and overblown hunting industry. The myth is that they depopulate elk and deer populations, thus preventing bored idiots from hunting them for sport, and from bringing revenue to the states.

How terrible that doctors and lawyers from the city might have their hunting vacations trod upon by other creatures that actually need to hunt to live, and who never kill for sport! Imagine it!

It goes deeper- how people are choosing to deal with this "problem" is reflective of the distance people have grown from the simple animistic duty we all have to respect life, and to respect the well-being of the animal nations that live alongside us. Farmers claim (as they have always claimed) that wolves destroy and harass their farm animals, and indeed, the government has given farmers a free pass to shoot as many wolves as they can claim are "stalking" their livestock.

So money and guns once again take the center stage of human thinking on these matters of spiritual importance. Why not just get dogs? Since very early times, humans have used herd dogs and sheep dogs and just dogs in general to protect their livestock from wolves. It worked then, it would work now. Instead of going straight to bullets, why not re-engage the rules of nature, and have these canine creatures place each other in check, as they will? Why not consider better ways to contain and protect livestock?

These people are really wrapped up in the myth that they "own" land and that they have the moral ground to decide life and death for other creatures that have been living on this land far longer than they. We may have papers saying that we have the legal right to stay in a place, but we don't "own" land in any sense beyond the shallow perceptions of our ownership-obsessed society. And we certainly don't have the right to hunt creatures onto endangered lists, when the real issue is our lack of flexibility and creativity for learning to co-exist with them.

Farmers were the original cause of the wolf exterminations of the last three centuries- to "protect livestock", wolf populations were excoriated as "pests" and "intruders" and hunted to near nothingness.

The Master Spirit of Wolves will not be an advocate for humanity on the day that our species is represented before the powers of life. If humans can't think more systemically and ecologically about how they approach this matter (and don't get me started on the other animal nations that have suffered at our lack of wisdom) then perhaps we don't deserve the friendship or advocacy of the spiritual powers that we refuse to live in harmony with.

If you want to find out more about this travesty, and find out what you can do to help, EarthJustice has an excellent informative article about it, and lots of contact numbers for environmental protection groups that are fighting for the wolves. You can see it all here:

EarthJustice Press Release

And long live the fighters!

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