Saving Wolves

See on Scoop.itForty Two: Life and Other Important Things

I wish that I could wave a magic wand and make the world a kinder place for animals; cats, dogs, cows, pigs, sheep, horses, whales, dolphins, elephants, animals used in laboratory experiments — you get the picture, right?

Animals are awesome.

Animals should have legal rights — they should be better protected and defended.

Everyone has issues they’re passionate about, and this is one of mine.

No animal needs our help more than wolves.

Wolves are being killed, slaughtered, mutilated, exterminated.

My tugboat man and I drove up to Sacramento so that I could testify at the Fish and Wildlife Service‘s wolf delisting hearing on November 22. He was there to make sure that I stayed out of jail. It’s kind of a joke but not really. Being around hunters and others who enjoy killing animals makes me so mad that you can almost see me explode with RAGE. The smoke-out-of-the-ears kind of rage. The kind of rage that has no filter. THAT kind of rage.

I’m sure that I’m one of the most skeptical people in the world when it comes to the reasons why our government is motivated to do ANYTHING, but this particular issue boggles my mind to a crazy degree.

This horrible and scientifically flawed idea that wolves are in a position to have recovered enough numbers to be formally removed from the Endangered Species List is what has driven thousands of Americans to protest, speak out, argue against it, and do whatever they can to continue to protect these beautiful creatures from certain extinction — again.

A hunter who kills a wolf belongs to a subsection — a microcosm —  of a human being whose sole purpose in life is the extermination of a species.

It’s scary, people. Really scary.

From what I understand, funded in part by the Koch Brothers’ smoke screen organization, American Prosperity Group, ranchers and hunters have declared an all-out war against the wolf — any wolf, Gray Wolf, Red Wolf or Mexican Wolf, coyotes, any and all predators that they incorrectly believe threaten THEIR skewed right to breed, grow, and eventually murder their own cattle and sheep.

Current research indicates other successful non-lethal options to protect their “investment” animals — living and breathing creatures whose sole existence is to breed and grow to one day be killed — yet another reason why we don’t eat meat.

What this potential delisting has helped to unleash is a group of sadistic hunters who are entrenched in zoosadism.

Zoosadism is a term used to refer to the pleasure that an individual gains from the cruelty to animals. SEXUAL PLEASURE. Zoosadism is getting sexually excited by causing harm to animals and is considered a form of animal abuse. Have you seen all those horrible photos on the internet? Zoosadists are true sociopaths.

At the hearing, one of the first speakers was Chief Caleen Sisk of the Winnemem WintuTribe of American Indians near Mount Shasta. She received much deserved applause and shouts of support when she said that the wolf had long been a spiritual figure for her tribe.

“The wolf is our teacher,” she said, explaining that its extended pack relationships served as an example for human families. She compared the hunting of wolves out of fear to the killing of American Indians.

There were so many amazing speakers who spoke with intelligence, passion, dedication, and concern for the wolf.

Selfie cos hub takes horrible pics.

WIth 500-600 attendees, and the knowledge that there was a videographer who recorded all the speeches as official government testimony, you’d think I would have been nervous, but I’ve always had plenty of public speaking confidence (some might call it chutzpah,) — especially with five-inch heels and a Chanel on my arm.


“It is past time to take the words of Gandhi to heart: “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”

Why is the term “delisting” synonymous with hunting, blood sport, and the murder of a species?

Is this the only barbaric method “good science” has for “species management”?

Instead, let’s call it what it really is: government sanctioned murder.

De-listing really means that it’s OK to hunt, torture, and destroy species and is really just legalizes more brutality.

We cannot allow the current administration to give up on wolf recovery for the gray wolf OR the Mexican wolf or relinquish species survival to the states.

I’m from here in California where we have excellent habitat but no wolves and I absolutely do NOT support any (Fish and Wildlife Service’s) proposal to delist the gray wolf, a barely recovering endangered species that’s currently being slaughtered for political gain.

We need to manage wolves and other wildlife in a healthy and sustainable way so that future generations can enjoy the benefits of our rich wildlife heritage. However, management cannot mean the hunting and murder of a species.

That the irrational and enduring hostility to wolves still exists, and that hundreds of more wolves will be killed — is wrong and the cruel methods allowed for hunting and trapping wolves are deeply disturbing and sociopathic, egregious, and inhumane.

Our own life changing visit to Yellowstone in August fulfilled my     dream to see the wolves of Lamar Valley.

At 6:00 a.m., a few miles outside our camp at Slough Creek, we followed others to a bison carcass, and our efforts paid off with a multiple sighting of many wolves, including 755.

There was an overwhelming sense of awe among the dozens of us who silently watched him cross the road and then a collective sigh of relief when he disappeared safely over the ridge.

Those same wolves are being murdered the instant they cross that invisible border out of the park. It’s absolutely insane.

WE hold the power to ensure that we’re not the last generation to view a wolf in nature; not confined in a zoo, or most importantly, not dead after being tortured and then displayed as a “trophy”.

The truth is that wolf recovery is far from over.

According to many leading scientists, we’ve entered into an era of mass extinction, which will not have run its course until biodiversity levels are less than twenty-five percent of what they are now.

I’m here to push back against this culture of extinction.

I’m here because of the legacy I want to leave behind for our children.

More than thirty years ago, I did my small part to advocate for the addition of wolves to the Endangered Species List.

I wrote letters and joined forces with groups dedicated to protecting the wolf from certain extinction and it’s shameful that we’re back to the beginning.

It appears that the last thirty years have culminated in the nurturing of this species’ growth for the single sacrificial purpose to provide animals for thrill killing hunter/murderers and that’s why continued protection is even more necessary.

Our collective legacy will not be celebrating wolf recovery, but rather their unnecessary deaths will become your ONLY legacy.

Do NOT delist the gray wolf. Outlaw all hunting of wolves.”

Cleveland Amory: “Hunters should be hunted themselves, to prevent hunter overpopulation and to undo the effects of inbreeding.”

Marilyn Armstrong‘s insight:

Destroying wolves is one of so many things we are destroying. We need to stop killing our world one species at a time. There is a reason the animals were created before humans. They deserve a piece of nature, to be safe, to live, love, breed and hunt as they were meant to. Please – We are not owners of the earth. We are just residents, no more or less than the wolves and whales and eagles. And trees. We have no right to destroy it all and we will pay dearly for it.

Please visit Enchanted Seashell at for the entire story.

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Categories: #animals, Ecology, Legal Matters, Nature, Politics

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24 replies

  1. I read this post this morning, when I still had a small part of my sanity left. Seeing as how that is gone, I would just like to note that I recall you write a very moving several paragraphs that I did quite agree with. Thanks to people like you, wolves and similar animals have a fighting chance. You should be very proud of that, dearest Marilyn!


    • Honestly I don’t think they really do have a fighting chance. I think they are doomed as are all large predators around the world and all large land animals (like elephants and rhinoceroses too). But I feel obligated to keep trying, for whatever it’s worth.


      • I think it’s a valiant effort, if nothing else. Better than standing by and doing nothing, that’s for sure.


        • Well, it doesn’t take much courage on my part to reblog her speech, but she went down to Sacramento and actually stood up and spoke. That’s more effort than most people every manage.


  2. It shouldn’t come as a surprise that I love animals way more than people. Some claim that we are at the top of the food chain, the most intelligent species on planet Earth. I’ll not get into that argument here but suffice it to say I respect animals more than humans as well. I’ve watched plenty of apocalyptic scenarios in movies and I think I would survive just fine if half the planet’s population were suddenly not here. I think animals would fare even better.


    • Dan Brown’s “Inferno” proposed a solution. I thought about it and said … “you know? Thats not a bad idea, actually.” Just cut the earth’s population down by 1/3 or more, painlessless by attrition and give earth a chance. Pity that’s not what’s happening.


  3. A very thought provoking discussion. I think I will always be a meat eater but I hate the idea of hunting for sport. Not that there is anything really sporting about shooting an animal at long range with a great big gun. Here in Tasmania our Thylacine (Tasmanian Tiger) was hunted to extinction. A unique marsupial gone forever. I don’t want to see the wolves,or elephants, tigers or any other wild creature go the same way.


    • Sadly, I think all our large predators … and elephants which are just big and in the way — and then of course, there’s the ivory — are doomed. Not because you and me don’t care, but because they are inconvenient.


  4. I understand both sides, I don’t have the education of either of you.
    The problem with wolf packs out here is the cattle they attack. There is plenty of land and wild game however many of the wolf packs have found cattle easier.
    Okay, most ranchers would not mind losing a head or two. Often it’s more than that. With the easy kill comes selective eating. Once a wolf pack would pick the carcass clean. Now the eat selective parts and they kill again. Ranchers lose cattle to Bears, broken legs, disease plus the wolf. There is not a huge profit mark. Plus how the wolf is killing and leaving meat is making many ranchers angry.
    I also understand that these awesome animals must be protected. They need diverse DNA to flourish. I also don’t believe the ban should be lifted yet. Ranchers do need help somehow.
    I found the zoosadist term repulsive and uncalled for in her argument.
    This needs rational people to find a solution.


    • The problem is the same world wide and ALL large predators are endangered for the exact same reasons. Human beings raise goats, cattle and sheep. Large predators eat them. Not to mention all the trophy hunters who kill because they want to hang a head or a pelt on the wall. Them I could really do without. They don’t eat what they kill and they don’t kill to eat. They just kill.

      Everywhere on earth, the predators are disappearing. They don’t see why they can’t eat the big tasty cow or goat or sheep.

      When they are gone, they are gone forever. We’ve taken away the places they lived. We will see the end of wild tigers in our lifetime, maybe within the next few years. Left without protection, I think we’ll see the end of wolves, too.

      Who needs protection more? Really? We (humans) are going to win every battle — and ultimately, will lose the war.


  5. As a hunter in my formative years and a Fisheries and Wildlife biologist in Idaho wolf country, my opinion is that this complex issue is more than giving grandiose speeches to captive audiences. Understanding the complexities of population management when a species is reintroduced is more a management practice issue than demonizing this “culture of extinction”. Liberals and Conservatives alike don’t seem to grasp the real issues that confront species but default to bizarre emotional outbursts grounded in non-science. Emotionally I agree with you. Scientifically I can’t as you have no argument that supports any theory. Your rants are based on an emotive need to bolster your identity. Calling hunters thrill killers/hunter/murderers is a shameful generalists rant. I grew up in a family where we had to hunt in order to eat. I did not experience what you call zoosadism (really?).
    One of the first things I learned in Wildlife Management was that SPECIES GO EXTINCT AND HAVE BEEN FOR MILLENNIA. It has happened as long as our climate has changed and will continue to happen. Yes, the rate is increasing thanks to “progress” but is as incessant as it is inexorable.

    When dealing with issues that rile your emotions it takes superman/woman effort to remove yourself from the equation, and TRY to ask LOGICAL questions. I guarantee you that the USFWS does not make decisions lightly and cover all of their bases. They have to. They have been sued too many times.
    I want to walk down that righteous path of anger where you so boldly seem to go. I have wolves on my property and love them. I have purchased thousands of acres of habitat that is placed into permanent protection for ESA species. I understand the fight and feel deeply about it. Just do something tangible, not emotive. You get nowhere.


    • First, this is a reblog. I didn’t write it. I have no problem with hunting for food. What exactly does hunting wolves have to do with feeding your family? Species go extinct, but humans beings are causing the extinction of a huge number of species by killing them and/or eliminating the habitat they need to survive. That isn’t “nature” doing it’s thing. It’s human beings doing ours. We presume we have the right to cut down, kill, “manage” other species because we own the earth. Well, I don’t think we own the earth. We are the current dominant species. We are killing our environment and everything in it. Not necessarily out of malice, but out of insensitivity, ignorance and arrogance. And stupidity.

      I don’t think that treating subjects with chilly lack of emotion is inherently superior. We ARE supposed to feel, you know? We aren’t just brains and the rest of the body is there to support it. Emotions are as much a part of us and as valid as anything else. Tempered with knowledge, emotion is why we bother to venture out of our comfort zone and try and protect the environment and its creatures for no better reason than we believe it’s important, believe that other creatures have rights too.

      Yes, species go extinct. And if we continue to exploit and destroy the world in which we live, we will be one of the species. And we will deserve it.

      The woman who wrote this took the time to fight what she — and I — believe is a bad law. You get paid to do a job. She didn’t get paid. She did something out of conviction while you are merely protecting your paycheck and your employer. The government has made some VERY bad laws, some exceptionally dim-witted and short-sighted laws. And that’s WHY they’ve been sued so many times.


      • Protecting a paycheck? Yur funny. I have done more for wolves and wildlife than you can ever dream of accomplishing with your rants. I have purchased well over 10,000 acres of fee-title lands and was responsible for the development of the Regional Fish and wildlife hydroelectric mitigation program that includes purchasing millions of acres of habitat for all wildlife species, earning 30k per year while you travel the country taking pictures.
        My point is that if you manage a species, say elk or deer so States can make some money to support their various natural resource programs then it follows that you must manage for the reintroduction of predators. If you don’t manage then you have no elk, deer, jobs, programs etc. No one says that this is right, or that wolves should take precedence over ungulate prey species, it is just the way it is without sounding like a “robot”. So make effective change by either using your well-earned vacation blogger money to buy habitat or seek legislation that impacts the management and subsequent allowable take of ungulates. There is just too much money and jobs that are dependent upon the hunting industry. It is not right it is not wrong, it just is. Try living in wolf country with a bunch of rednecks that want to shoot every last one while you are actively protecting them, then we can have an honest and knowledgeable conversation.


        • I am sorry if I misunderstood your employment. You sounded like you were working for the government.

          I STILL didn’t write the post. It’s STILL a reblog

          That being said, I agree removing the wolves from protected status is effectively a death sentence for them. I too read books. I see numbers. I understand statistics. You are not the only person around here with an education, though you do seem to think you are. I am capable of interpreting information. I’m glad you are protecting wolves, but how in the world does removing their protected status help them?

          Wolves do not significantly impact the numbers of ungulates as far as I can tell. Wolves, coyotes, deer, elk, moose … they all lived together fine before we got involved. Your position is illogical. Until they were put under protected status, wolves were being hunted from helicopters in Alaska using automatic weapons, trapped using the most hideous inhumane traps and poison. We were well on our way to eliminating the last of them in the lower forty and moving forward to eliminating them in Alaska too. You can throw as many numbers at me as you want, but as long as humans with guns and traps, hatred and greed as their motivators are determined to wipe out every last wolf from the face of the earth, they need protection. More than they have now, not less. You said it yourself.

          “Try living in wolf country with a bunch of rednecks that want to shoot every last one while you are actively protecting them, then we can have an honest and knowledgeable conversation.”

          I don’t have wolves, but we have coyotes. Lots of them. And bobcats, fishers and the bears are working their way down towards us. All are effective predators. We also have, despite predators (and an open season for hunting) an over-abundance of deer. Unlike wolves, coyotes have adapted well to living around people and seem to be extending their range. Down east, we live with losing pets and chickens and sheep and deer. Nobody goes crazy over it. Nobody demands the elimination of all the coyotes. Or bears. Or anything else. There are plenty of hunters around New England … but they bag their deer and seem to feel that’s enough. They don’t need to wipe out a species.

          Nothing you said disproves my point — that there is no reason (other than greed) for reopening hunting season on wolves. I really don’t care if wolves impact the hunting industry. They can cope with reduced profits. It’s a rough world and they can take their lumps along with everyone else. I’m tired of having MY world raped for someone else’s profit.

          Insulting me isn’t making your point — especially since I didn’t write the post and don’t need to defend a position I never took in the first place. It just makes you just sound mean-spirited and arrogant. Are you? Really?

          And finally, as a disabled retiree struggling to survive on social security, I’d be curious to know what you figure I’m in a position to do, other than put out some free publicity for people who are trying their best to do what they believe is right.


          • I don’t disagree with you, I just get pretty cranked up sometimes. I am a “living in the trenches kind of guy”, not yakking about it. Tired of having your world “raped” is rather egocentric, but I can say that after a lifetime of committed work in this arena I agree with that. If that makes me mean spirited, ok, but not by design or intent. Unaware sometimes? Yes.


            • I get worked up too when I’m passionate about something. I kind of thought maybe that was what was going on. I recognize the symptoms.


            • And yeah, I’m 66 and my health sucks. I remember when my generation “created” Earth Day. We were going to CHANGE THE WORLD. What did we do? Really? Mostly, aside from raising a bit of awareness on a few issues, many of which we seem to have abandoned anyway — we made denim a fashion fabric.

              I used to go out and do things. Sadly, I don’t have that choice available to me anymore. And damn it, it IS my world. It’s not ONLY my world, but it’s the only world I’ve got. The things we do in the name of making an extra half a percent of profit … I wonder if we will ever be able to fix what we’ve broken. I won’t be alive to see the outcome of the mess we are making. Maybe that’s just as well.

              We crossed in the ether there …

              Where ARE you? I am in Massachusetts, the rural middle. I’m assuming you are somewhere west of here? I wish we were younger, not quite so poor and a lot more spry. You have NO idea how VERY much I would like to take you up on your offer.


  6. I agree animals are awesome and so are animal rescues. It makes me so sad that people are so far removed from their fellow creatures that they think half the stuff that happens to animals is ok. 😦


  7. The negative tag on wolves comes from Hollywood where you have all these movies of wolves attacking people.


  8. A little night music for the kids..


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