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Michigan: Lawmakers Found a Way Around Wolf Hunt Petition Drive

Animals  (tags: Michigan, Wolves, Hunters, protection, crime, cruelty, death, animals, AnimalWelfare, abuse, wildanimals, sadness, slaughter, killing, wildlife, environment, animalrights, habitat, humans, ethics, animalcruelty, society, suffering )

- 2133 days ago -
"Who are the stakeholders?" he said. "Is it just hunters? Are hunters the only ones who should be consulted on whether and how we should hunt some type of creature?"


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roxy H (350)
Monday May 20, 2013, 9:25 pm
The approval of a wolf hunt for November and December came after Gov. Rick Snyder this month signed into law a bill by state Sen. Tom Casperson, a fellow Republican, that leaves decision-making on such hunts to the appointed Natural Resources Commission and the Legislature.

Casperson’s Senate Bill 288 effectively thwarted a petition drive to have a statewide vote on the wolf hunt in November 2014. Spearheaded by the Michigan chapter of the Humane Society, more than 253,000 petition signatures were gathered throughout Michigan in support of a referendum.

“When it became very clear the Michigan public feels very strongly about this and is eager to vote on it, Sen. Casperson introduced a bill that nullifies the public’s voices and puts it in the hands of the Natural Resources Commission,” said Jill Fritz, state director for the Humane Society.

Casperson, from Escanaba, said his bill follows Proposal G, passed overwhelmingly by Michigan voters in 1996. That ballot initiative called for the Natural Resources Commission to regulate the taking of game in Michigan and to use “sound scientific management” in decision-making on hunts.

Casperson criticized the Humane Society of the United States for the money it poured into the wolf referendum petition drive, including a TV ad campaign.

“Our concern is really where we’re headed with outside organizations coming in with money that start using our system to dictate policy in our state,” he said. “I can’t even fathom how we can have an honest discussion on how to manage wildlife over sound bites on television. I don’t think that’s a good direction for Michigan to go in.”

Trish Marie of Grand Blanc gathered petition signatures with her family earlier this year.

“I’m not an outside special interest group,” she said. “I was born, raised and lived my entire life in the state of Michigan.

“My husband, my daughter, my niece, my sister, all of us circulated petitions — only to see our efforts laid to waste by special interests within the Legislature, who used legislative hijinks to get around our successful petition drive.”

Marie said her 26-year-old daughter now looks at her state representatives “with a very jaded eye that she didn’t have before.”

“This is basically saying to our young people, ‘Stay on Facebook. Party. Don’t go out there and get involved in your government.’ Because they are going to find a way to do what they want anyway.”

John Vucetich, an associate professor of wildlife ecology at Michigan Technological University, said the establishment of a hunt and derailing the referendum petition violates key tenets of the North American Model of Wildlife Management, a set of principles followed by many hunting organizations and wildlife professionals.

“In the very best scholarship it is abundantly clear that wildlife management is some kind of judicious balance between science and democracy,” he said. “They are really running roughshod over the democracy part.”

Vucetich added that another tenet is that wildlife is held in the public trust.

“Who are the stakeholders?” he said. “Is it just hunters? Are hunters the only ones who should be consulted on whether and how we should hunt some type of creature?”

Ironwood resident Sandy Lahtinen also opposes the hunt.

“It’s too soon,” she said. “They’ve just been taken off the endangered species list. Let’s see what happens ... what happens with the hunts in Minnesota and Wisconsin. What’s the rush?”

Ironwood resident Al Clemens said the referendum effort was driven by “tree huggers trying to mess our end of the U.P. up.”

“They don’t have any idea what’s going on,” he said. “Wolves were shot and trapped almost into extinction for a reason. We can see why.”

Past Member (0)
Tuesday May 21, 2013, 11:40 am
thx Roxie:))

mar l ene dinkins (264)
Wednesday May 22, 2013, 12:55 pm
thx Roxie!!!!! also noted!!!!!and signed!!!!

Donna G (42)
Wednesday May 22, 2013, 12:59 pm
So, does this mean that the Natural Resources Commission couldn't be petitioned? If I interpreted the story correctly, it seems like the activists have a different target for their petition now.

roxy H (350)
Wednesday May 22, 2013, 1:01 pm
What it means is the lawmakers threw the petition in the trash pretty much, and slapped the people in the face

Roseann d (178)
Wednesday May 22, 2013, 1:08 pm
If you want to know the frightful anti-democratic, GOP vision for America...look no further than Michigan....This is the crap that you sure don't see in those Pure Michigan commercials.

Killing Wildlife Indiscriminantly - PURE MICHIGAN


June M (136)
Wednesday May 22, 2013, 2:01 pm
thanks roxie

Christine Stewart (134)
Wednesday May 22, 2013, 4:04 pm
Boycott the livestock industry until they stop advocating the slaughter of our wildlife!

Leslene Dunn (84)
Friday May 24, 2013, 12:38 am
These poor poor animals - if I had loads of money I would have come over and rounded all these beautiful animals up and placed them in a heavily guarded sanctuary. Then I would have rounded up a task team and let them hunt these bastards down without any mercy being shown to them. They must feel the pain and suffering these animals have to feel. What in God's name is wrong with these monsters. I could easily put a knife through every one of them without any regrets.
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