Tuesday, May 29, 2012

What Happens if the Hunters Were the Hunted?

--> -->Crying Wolf


I recently attended another excellent forum at May Day put on by 3CTC, a left-wing environmental organization here in Minnesota.  Barry Babcock of the Mississippi Headwaters Canoe Club from ‘up north’ talked to a gathering of 25 on why the ‘war on wolves’ must be stopped.  

If you haven’t heard, the extraction industries best friend, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources – actually Department of Exploitation of Natural Resources (“DENR”) is now handling a ‘wolf hunt’ in Minnesota.  This was pushed through by a bi-partisan group of legislators and eagerly signed by ex-Dayton magnate Mark Dayton.  Now in Minnesota up to 400 wolves will be ‘taken’ or ‘harvested,’ as they like to say in extraction-land, in two seasons each year, starting November 3, 2012.  Since there are only 3,000 wolves in Minnesota, I would imagine in about 6 years we should see complete extinction.  Of course this comes from a Federal decision that went through Congress and the Obama administration, chaperoned by the extractive industries best friend, Interior’s Ken Salazar.  Other states are now seeing the same thing.

Babcock pointed out that behind the clueless hunting groups, the politicians grubbing for cheap votes and the DENR lie the extractive players in Minnesota – the taconite, mining and lumber industries - who will benefit by removing wolves from land so it can be mined, roads put in and land cleared.  


Of course, no self-respecting extractor will admit that he has any intention of ‘harming wolves.’  God forbid!  The DENR’s Shimek is no exception.  Congress also maintained that this would be better for the wolves. Of course, hypocrisy and logic know no bounds when involving bourgeois politicians.  Well, as Babcock carefully pointed out, the Indian reservations up north think otherwise, and now Red Lake and White Earth are both banning any wolf hunting on their land, and instead are creating refuges for wolves.  As Babcock put it, “Indians are better conservators of our natural resources than the white man.”  Especially some white men.  


So outside the reservations, what can we do?  I listen to wolves howl outside Ely cabins, and know that, like the Cuyohoga, the buffalo and the American eagle, not everything disappears.  Though the frogs in northern Minnesota are almost gone.  Can we arm the wolves to make it a fair fight?  Well, unfortunately, wolves do not have opposable thumbs.  It worked in “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” but it won’t work with wolves.  However, reading the book, “Rage & Reason” by Michael Tobias will perhaps provide an answer.  This book would turn any red-blooded American into a raging vegetarian.  Read it and weep.  The hero of Tobias’ book would lie in the woods and kill the wolf hunters one by one.  


And I heard about it at May Day Books - the “Finn Hall” of Minneapolis

Red Frog, May 29, 2012


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