Last week, the Vancouver Sun published their strongest op-ed to date on ending the trophy hunt for grizzly bears. Here's an excerpt:
"if public demand is such a key driver in changing the way government does things, why isn’t the province moving swiftly to ban trophy hunting of grizzly bears? Surveys — real opinion polls, not self-selected posts to a government website or submissions from stakeholders with a vested interest — show the vast majority of us are strongly opposed to the practice and its sanction by provincial authorities.
Popular support for trophy hunting of grizzly bears is now in free-fall and the vast majority of British Columbians want government to put a stop to it.
In 2008, 73 per cent of us were against the hunt. By 2013 the opposition had risen to 87 per cent. Furthermore, a whopping 91 per cent of the province’s hunters agree that where First Nations impose hunting bans or restrictions within their traditional territories, hunters should abide by those wishes and by any traditional laws or customs, a reminder the majority of homegrown hunters are ethical, thoughtful and sensitive to the issues.
It’s equally important to remember it’s not hunting to which so many British Columbians take exception, it’s a particular and limited kind of hunting that is not about obtaining wild meat in a sustainable, environmentally sound way, but is about killing large predators for purposes of self-gratification and self-aggrandizement."
Their final question is one we've also asked ourselves many times since starting this project:
"Given the economic benefits from the bear-viewing industry are so much greater and so much more sustainable; that the brief seasonal employment provided by a tiny cadre of guide-outfitters is so marginal; that the revenue claims for the hunt are so dubious; and that we don’t exactly have a vast surplus of grizzlies — even at the most generous estimate, humans out-number the bears by about 270-1 — why, exactly is the province so reluctant to do what British Columbians want done on this file?"