Thursday, February 5, 2009

Ashley Judd Attacks Sarah Palin for Brutal Killing of Wolves

Actress Ashley Judd stars in a new campaign targeted at Sarah Palin's alleged "anti-conservation agenda" and her promotion of the killing of wolves and bears in Alaska.

Defenders Action Fund launched the campaign today with a new Website, EyeonPalin.org. In a video, Judd condemns Palin for promoting the aerial killing of wolves and even accuses her of suggesting $150 bounties for the severed forelegs of killed wolves.

"Now back in Alaska, Palin is again casting aside science and championing the slaughter of wildlife," Judds recites somberly.

"Palin even proposed a $150 bounty for the severed foreleg of each killed wolf. And now she is encouraging even more aerial killing. it is time to stop Sarah Palin and stop this senseless savagery."

I read this comment on the Christian Science Monitor and it sure rings true:

"So it’s the WOLVES that are decimating the moose and caribou populations? I guess people are the only ones allowed to feast at the table? How pathetic. I have no issue with getting your own food, in fact I encourage it. But taking out your competitor is typical human behavior. Offering 150 bucks for an appendage takes me back to shouts of “bring me his head!”
They shoot from helicopters, often wounding these animals and leaving them to suffer, trying to drag themselves to cover, while the “hunter” picks off the rest of the pack. And pups? Forget about it! Entire dens are usually beaten to death with a rock or shot in the head. What was it…14 pups in one outing last year? Predator control? I don’t think so."

This is from the Seattle Times I found today and explains what might be the outcome of killing off Predators like Wolves:


Wolves last roamed the Olympic Peninsula nearly a century ago. A controversial new study argues the absence of these predators has led to dramatic and often destructive shifts in the area's ecology.

Roosevelt elk splash through the Hoh River in Olympic National Park. Since wolves were eradicated in the early 1900s, some scientists say, overbrowsing by elk has damaged the forest understory and increased riverbank erosion, threatening the ecosystem.

Oregon State University researcher Robert Beschta says the forest understory in the Hoh Rain Forest is unnaturally open, and few young trees have survived to maturity since wolves were killed off and elk multiplied.

But the loss of the stealthy predators in the early 1900s left a hole in the landscape that scientists say they are just beginning to grasp. The ripples extend throughout what is now Olympic National Park, leading to a boom in elk populations, overbrowsing of shrubs and trees, and erosion so severe it has altered the very nature of the rivers, says a team of Oregon State University biologists. The result, they argue, is an environment that is less rich, less resilient, and " perhaps " in peril.

"We think this ecosystem is unraveling in the absence of wolves," said OSU ecologist William Ripple.


Just like Joe the Plumber, Sarah Palin continues to be in the news.

Although Ms. Palin may not prefer to be lumped in with Mr. Plumber Mr. Wurzelbacher, both were a part of the Republican presidential campaign, both are active now in Republican politics, and both are getting a lot of news attention.

Palin, as the governor of Alaska and possible presidential candidate, and Wurzelbacher as adviser to the GOP on the economy (not to mention war correspondent, author, country western singer, and plumber).

Defenders of Wildlife

Regardless, on Monday, the environmental advocacy group Defenders of Wildlife went after Governor Palin for her support of a predator-control program in Alaska.

The reason they’re focusing on her? It’ll make news. According to a statement from the group, she’s a high profile target.

“Sarah Palin isn’t fading into the background, so neither are we,” said Defenders Action Fund President Rodger Schlickeisen in a statement. “Given her known political aspirations, the American public deserves to know what she’s doing in Alaska, and about her extreme anti-conservation policies.”

The policy in question is aerial hunting. Specifically, shooting wolves from helicopters. Defenders calls it cruel. Palin calls it wildlife management.

Eye on Palin

Defenders launched a new website (EyeonPalin.org) and actress Ashley Judd is cause’s spokeswoman.

“I am outraged by Sarah Palin’s promotion of this cruel, unscientific and senseless practice which has no place in modern America,” Ms. Judd said in a statement. “Because she is apparently determined to continue and expand this horrific program, I am grateful that Defenders will aggressively fight to stop her. I am proud to be a part of that effort.”

Predator control

Palin doesn’t see it that way. Although the practice might seem akin to throwing dynamite in a lake for catching trout, in Alaska, they call it predator control.

She says the new commercial perverts the issue.

“The ad campaign by this extreme fringe group, as Alaskans have witnessed over the last several years, distorts the facts about Alaska’s wildlife management programs,” Palin said in a statement.

“Alaskans depend on wildlife for food and cultural practices which can’t be sustained when predators are allowed to decimate moose and caribou populations. Our predator control programs are scientific and successful at protecting vulnerable wildlife.”

“Shame on the Defenders of Wildlife for twisting the truth in an effort to raise funds from innocent and hard-pressed Americans struggling with these rough economic times,” the statement concluded.

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