A Board of Wildlife Would Offer Solutions Board
of Game Never Can
to the Editor / Anchorage Daily News / March 27, 2004
Hunters have a right to hunt. The objection
by many people is to gearing wildlife management to achieve
the goals of hunters above all others. Alaska's wildlife
is too valuable to be set aside for one exclusive user group.
Many Alaska hunters feel that the current Board of Game does
not represent their views.
While this flurry of debate about wolf control is occurring, the majority of
Alaskans -- non-hunters and wildlife viewers -- are watching from the sidelines,
unable to influence the Board of Game.
These people have the right to know that the wildlife they love and respect is
being managed in a manner that preserves and protects the integrity of the ecosystem.
They have a right to equal access to wildlife regions without fear of injury
or intimidation. They have the right to express their beliefs without being ridiculed
and demeaned for being overly sentimental or emotional. Above all, they have
a right to have their voices heard. The wildlife of Alaska belongs to them as
much as anyone. Their right to play a role in the decision making process regarding
the state's treatment of wildlife must be honored.
Until a level playing field is established that respects all values, there will
continue to be wildlife wars. A Board of Wildlife can bring peace and fairness
to the wildlife management process of Alaska.
-- Maury Mason, Executive Director / Alaska Wildlife Alliance / Anchorage
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