When Will Anchorage Residents Admit Moose are Plain Dangerous?

Letters to the Editor / Anchorage Daily News / April 9, 2004

On the urban moose issue brought up by Paul Vogel's trail incident and the stomping of young Cade Scholz, and rehashed by Craig Medred's Sunday column, "Hold your fire; moose are a fact of life on city trails" (April 4) and many other editorials, I have a question: What will it take for our city to realize that the protection of human life is more important than the protection of wildlife?

Mr. Medred's statement that "dangerous encounters with moose can always be avoided" is absolutely untrue. Three years ago, my son was attacked in the front yard of my Dimond-area home. He walked around the corner of the house, head down and didn't see the mother and baby moose right on the other side. He was stomped in the head and the back, and was found minutes later by the friends he was with. He didn't have the luxury to turn and run, or take a "wide detour" around the moose. Instead, we had to live through the horror of that discovery, of frantic CPR and months of rehabilitation. No, my son's attack could only have been avoided if our government had done something to keep the moose population in our city under control.

I'm tired of debates that value the life of an ungulate over that of my son, over any human. If our loved ones were being harmed at this rate by human "bad guys" we'd never stand for it. But because these potential killers have fur, they've somehow become sanctified and untouchable. Shameful.

-- Sue Johnson / Anchorage

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