We’re to be ‘proud’ for protecting a bloodbath? (By Whitehorse Star on November 29, 2013 at 5:07 pm)

Slaughtering seals is cruel, inhumane and unethical. The European public has spoken loud and clear. For ethical reasons, they do not want what the seal industry is selling – the body parts of seals.Period!

Yukon MP Ryan Leef, on the iconic (?) CBC on Monday, said:“We are proud to protect a traditional, sustainable and historic way of life for Canadian sealers across this great country.” And all this makes the slaughter of hundreds of thousands of seals annually ethical, Mr. Leaf?

Is it not inhumane to slaughter these animals? You cannot force the public in a democratic society to support what they don’t want to support. Get it?

This ban has sparked an interview, again on CBC, with a Dawson fashion designer who uses fur that belongs to wildlife for human desires – fashion. She said she does not use seal body parts in her business, and is not concerned that the fur industry will suffer from an import ban as well.

I am sure the fur industry, too, will some day become banned from exporting animal parts to the world. This fashion designer went on to say that fur is humanely harvested, and fur harvesters are stewards of the land, and fur is a green product.

She did not back this use of language with any logic. And I have become used to CBC North hosts not asking tough questions that deconstruct the ethics and language used by the animal use industries.

CBC: Is it your mandate to support, condone and glorify the exploitation and killing of non-humans? The public, not the animal, uses industries, and all its spokespeople will decide what they will or will not support when it comes to the well-being of sentient beings.

For the animals!

Mike Grieco
Yukon Wolves
Whitehorse

Ethics’ win over economics has made a historic statement (By Whitehorse Star on November 29, 2013 at 5:06 pm)

Congratulations to the European Union (EU) for banning all seal products because of the beyond description wholesale slaughter of between 325,000 and 500,000 baby harp seals off Canada’s east coast each year.

It’s about time that ethics got one over on economics, even though the hunt was never economically sustainable to begin with.

Another big pat on the back to the World Trade Organization for honouring their right to do so.

No country has a moral or legal obligation to take part in something it finds reprehensible.

No country can be forced to buy something its citizens don’t want, need and find disgusting. These are sovereign countries, and they can purchase or refuse to purchase anything they want.

Not sure why the CBC or Ryan “Window Dressing” Leef and the government try to incorporate the Inuit into the yearly genocide off the East Coast.

The Inuit don’t take part in that slaughter of baby harp seals.

That hunt is the reason for the EU ban, not some Ma and Pa operations selling some ringed, bearded, hooded, and harbour seals in the Far North.

It’s unfortunate that they lose that income from this ban, but they had nothing to do with it nor the reasoning for it.

The EU is not going to reverse a ban based on the East Coast’s annual slaughter supported by all of Europe to compensate for a few northern communities.

The Inuit do take harp seals as adults. And, according to reports by the North American Marine Mammal Commission, the only reason they do kill them is for dog food.

They are not killing three-week-old baby harp seals for a few grams of white fur, nor selling petrified penises to aphrodisiac snake oil salesmen in China.

The only plant that even provides this product was, until last week, in Dildo, Nfld. and Labrador. I kid you not.

There are no indigenous people involved in the cause for the EU ban nor any other ban involving seals. Seal bans are a result of the East Coast slaughter of babies.

Even Greenland has a ban on Canadian seal products for moral reasons – and their people are perhaps the most traditional hunters on this planet. Denmark also.

Our biggest trading partner, the U.S., has had a 100-per-cent ban for years.

Russia has even outlawed it, and countries like Taiwan.

Thousands of pelts rot in warehouses as I type this, and have for years.

The slaughter off the East Coast is a make-work project for political stroking. It loses money every year, and can’t even pay for the costs incurred.

Now, someone might ask, “Well, what do the indigenous people of Newfoundland think about this hunt and do they take part?”

No, they don’t, because they are extinct.

The Beothuks were wiped out by the Europeans. In fact, they had a bounty put on their heads, much like the bounty their descendants now place on the seals.

So congrats again to the sovereign people of Europe. A historical statement was made. The first of its kind.

Maybe even an evolutionary moment.

Kevin Sinclair
Whitehorse

If this cruelty was exposed, trapping would be banished (Whitehorse Star, Dec 6, 2013)

Re: “Veteran trapper leery about compulsory signs” (Whitehorse Star, Nov. 29).

So a trapper laments making signage mandatory on traplines. You would think one was imposing something cruel toward humans who set traps for one reason, and one reason only – to kill wildlife!

And according to the article, Frank Johnstone doesn’t like the idea of having to place signage on his traplines because it would hurt business. And the article went on to say, “because as soon as a wolf saw such a sign, it would be gone.”

A proposal for mandatory signage was put forward by members of the public because dogs and other “non-target” animals have been victims of the trapping (something I have been saying for years).

And it appears to me, judging by this article, Frank Johnstone and Graham Van Tighem of the Yukon Fish and Wildlife Management Board are not only making light of this fact, they seem to find it amusing, too.

If this is the case, perhaps these men could explain to the public exactly what is so entertaining about non-humans which become victims of traps.

Remember: Frank Johnstone, back in January 2008, had a wolf skull delivered to my home by a friend of his for apparently educational reasons.

It took several letters to the editor and one news article thanks to the Star’s reporter, Chuck Tobin – “Man wants answers behind skull inserted in his mailbox”, Star, Feb. 6, 2008.

Mr. Johnstone was named in this article but declined to comment until more than three weeks after his wolf skull “gift” ended up in my mailbox.

And back in the day, Johnstone said he would not allow me to visit his deathline – pardon me, trapline – with a camera or computer.

Flash forward: the trapping industry is to me like laboratories that experiment on animals – very secretive.

And if members of the public really knew and documented what went on in this cruel industry, trapping would be abolished for good. As it should be!

And if trapping is so humane and wonderful, the trappers have nothing to hide – no pun intended. Right?

Perhaps Environment Yukon could disclose its list of non-target or “junk” animals due to the results of using body-crushing conibear traps, leg-hold traps and strangulation snares.

Imagine: trapped and killed sentient beings referred to as junk? Truly appalling!

Save animals from horrific injuries and ultimately death – lets abolish trapping altogether! It’s the humane, ethical thing to do.

For the animals!

Mike Grieco, Whitehorse

Take note, you wolf-killers: dogs have killed more kids (By Whitehorse Star on December 6, 2013 at 5:09 pm)

One would think that when you have the beyond-partial local CBC radio station as your de facto lawyer that you would use the time spent with them wisely.

The first thing that might have benefited Mr. Clayton Thomas was to admit he knows very little about that which he kills but simply views the animal as some bizarre means to an end.

It gets tiresome after a while, like it’s some kind of default special knowledge; ergo, they know something nobody else knows because they are said to be trappers and hunters.

This does not give them any kind of insight on the animals they kill. It’s ridiculous and totally false, and nothing proves it more than this supposedly knowledgeable individual.

Raised in Teslin, they say. So? And that means?

Nothing, that’s what.

He does not get any points for having omnipotent knowledge of wolves because he’s from Teslin, or knows how to kill one.

Whoever the judge is, I hope he will at least consider the facts concerning wolves and not folklore and nursery rhymes, or he might want to build his next house out of brick.

Fact of the matter is, and always has been, is that one’s child is in more danger from the family pet than he or she is by any wolf.

Not one death of a human has ever been recorded by a wolf in Yukon. That’s what always rings so loud and clear in many, if not all, of these cases.

The elephant in the room is always the ignorance and stupidity of all these so-called “trappers/hunters” caught in the act of or charged with breaking the law.

I have many friends who are hunters, for the record, and all of them feel the same way about Thomas’ actions as I do.

You can’t use safety as a defence when safety was not an issue, which is supported by over 300 years of documentation and evidence.

You can’t just declare something which is a fact a non-fact because you need a fact to be false to get the benefit of the doubt.

To do so is an admission of guilt. End of story.

Kevin Sinclair
Whitehorse

P.S. About 35 children have been killed by dogs since 1982. No children have ever been killed by a wolf.

Shot bear was taken unfair advantage of. By Whitehorse Star on May 29, 2013

Re: “Shooting of bear hurt a lot of people” (Star, May 24).

The legal destruction of yet another bear is a deadly indication of “wildlife management” gone wrong!

Is the Department of Environment truly serious about addressing human/wildlife conflicts with respect to bears?

If so, why are they issuing permits to kill/destroy (they call it “harvest”) bears soon after and prior to hibernation? Is this ethical?

How is killing when you don’t need to kill, respecting wildlife?

Regardless of one’s opinion/position on hunting (killing) , these bears have been habituated to humans who showed no threat to them.

The person who killed this animal took full advantage of this situation and destroyed his life.

Bears and other wildlife need and deserve protection from humans. And humans need to lose the right to kill them if the department truly backs its words with respect to protecting wildlife. Being hypocritical is killing wildlife.

Guns don’t kill wildlife; people kill wildlife, with guns!

Mike Grieco
Whitehorse

Let video tape tell the true story By Whitehorse Star on May 31, 2013

Re: “MLAs protest Alaska-set show’s Yukon namesake” (Star, April 26).

This is an open letter to independent MLA Darius Elias and Environment Minister Currie Dixon.

Trapping animals is cruel and inhumane by nature – no matter if it’s done in Alaska, Yukon or some other planet.

Other than the fact that traps are not selective – as they can and do pose the same cruel and sad fate to “non-target” animals.

How exactly do trappers in Yukon end the life of victims of the trapping industry after potentially being restrained for days by strangulation snares or leghold traps? If their lives are not ended by gunshot, then how? Are they not clubbed to death?

Do trappers step/stomp on the victim’s neck or head? How, then? Inquiring minds want to know.

Or, are you deliberately trying to mislead the public that trapping wild animals in Yukon is not cruel and inhumane by nature?

Perhaps you could have real Yukon trappers permit full video footage on their traplines – and the public can decide for themselves exactly what the trapping industry is built on.

Mike Grieco
Whitehorse

http://www.change.org/petitions/dogs-are-they-really-man-s-best-friend-stop-dog-sledding-stop-animal-abuse?utm_campaign=petition_lonely&utm_medium=email&utm_source=guides

Canada is really a disgusting place when it comes to canine slavery. Please boycott/do not patronize ALL sled dog tours.

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http://www.animaladvocates.com/watchdog-blog/frozen-to-death-shy-but-happy-dorado-now-in-a-happier-place/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/sleddogwatchdog