Late last year, a state law was approved allowing the Natural Resources Commission to create a wolf hunt, if they deemed it warranted. Recently, though – ahead of a formal recommendation by state wildlife officials as to whether a wolf hunt should take place or not – a coalition called Keep Michigan Wolves Protected submitted over 235,000 signatures to state election officials. If a little over 161,000 of those signatures are deemed valid, the new state law would be temporarily suspended, and voters would then decide the fate of the wolf hunt in November of 2014.
Keep Michigan Wolves Protected’s Director is a woman by the name of Jill Fritz, who also happens to be Michigan’s Director of the Humane Society of the United States. I found it as no surprise that the HSUS would be involved in this particular issue, considering the success they had when they put Michigan’s now extinct dove hunt up for a vote. I’m sure they were overjoyed then to know that Michigan hunters would sit idly by, while they promoted their agenda and allowed the uninformed public to decide the issue, rather than letting wildlife biologists and sound scientific evidence make the call. With that previous experience in their pocket, I have no doubt that they felt very confident before starting this recent wolf petition process.
If these petitions are deemed valid, and if this issue is brought before the voters in November of 2014, the question remains, though, as to whether Michigan’s hunters will stand idly by and watch another hunting opportunity become extinct based on emotion and a “I don’t hunt wolves, so why do I care” mentality; or will they step up, make the facts known, vote this issue down, and allow scientists to make the call as to whether a wolf hunt takes place, not a group of anti-hunting whackos who purposely name their organization to creatively confuse and manipulate the public into thinking they’re about saving puppies and kittens in a shelter?
Michigan United Conversation Club’s Executive Director, Erin McDonough, “believes that HSUS has vastly underestimated the intelligence level of Michigan’s residents and has grossly overestimated this state’s tolerance for out-of-state extremists attempting to buy election results.”
I hope she’s right.
But based on what I witnessed of hunters during the dove hunt fiasco, I’m afraid we’re about to see another hunting opportunity decided by the uninformed public, and not by sound scientific management.
I can only hope that I’m wrong.