Mark Richards writes:
Someone alerted me to this post of yours. There are some errors I want to correct.
Your link to the "text" of Palin's Active Management-Airborne Shooting bill is actually a link to an op-ed I wrote about that bill, as co-chair of the Alaska chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers. And we were not "appalled" that grizzlies were also "killed by mistake". In other op-eds I/we had expressed that one of the reasons we opposed the snaring of "black bears" was because in sympatric ecosystems in which grizzlies were also present it would be impossible not to also catch some grizzlies.
(Maybe one thing I should clarify about the current black bear snaring program west of Anchorage is that they (Fish and Game) are trying to tranquilize and release any caught grizzly bears. Last year (2009) 8 were caught, 5 were released, 3 had to be killed. This year all were successfully released, about 10% of the catch again was grizzly bears.)
Don't get me wrong, I'm very glad you at least are trying to get some of this information out there. I continue to be just amazed at the hypocrisy of the whole "Mama Grizzly" meme that Palin continues to use. I haven't seen her new reality show, but I did read some excerpts and it boggles the mind that the ex-governor who started us down the road of killing real mama grizzlies and her offspring in bear snares can get away with such outlandish doublespeak.
Ex-governor Palin completely stacked our own department of Fish and Game leadership (even created a new leadership position for a family friend) to where just this past spring they did a complete and amazing 180-degree position shift on how they wanted to manage certain bear populations. Their position is summed up with this statement from a proposal ADFG submitted this spring to our Board of Game: "It is the department's intent to use trapping as a management tool for black bears and grizzly bears where hunting is not sufficiently effective to achieve population management goals." (More on this in another op-ed I wrote.)
The thing about bear trapping is that it doesn't distinguish between black bears or grizzly bears, or sows with cubs or cubs. It will definitely catch sows that have cubs, and in the end the entire family must be killed. All this talk of how mama grizzlies protect and fight for their young ... imagine a mama grizzly trapped in a bear snare by the foot, her one or two cubs with her uncaught, or one of the cubs trapped by a foot and how angry mama would be. This all came about because ex-governor Palin made it so.
In the history of Alaska since statehood, never has our own Department of Fish and Game ever condoned, let alone proposed that we start trapping bears to boost moose populations, that we go out and trap mama grizzly bears with cubs, and cubs. Yet the media allows Palin to continue to get away with this whole mama grizzly meme as if she is some protector of mama grizzlies herself and feels somehow aligned with them.
It's a shame that "Sarah Palin's Alaska" doesn't show the truth about what our ex-governor has done by going out across Cook Inlet from Anchorage and filming a trapped mama grizzly with her two cubs nearby, or one of the cubs caught while and angry mama grizzly stands ready to protect them. That's the program she put in motion and it continues next summer. And she has tried hard to ensure it happens in many other areas of the state.
The things she gets away with - the lies, the utter outright hypocrisy ... it's truly astounding,
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