2016-08-19

Gaurdians of the Grizzly

grizzly

I have been drawn in to the work of GOAL—a tribal coalition to protect the grizzly. GOAL is nearly 50 Tribal Nations united in the cause to protect the sacred grizzly bear, the defense of tribal sovereignty, and the preservation of indigenous spiritual and religious rights. Currently all of the proceeds from our Wild Within cards are going to this organization. I encourage you to spend some time on their website and donate if possible. You can also write letters to policy makers(see contact info below) and let them know you stand behind these Tribal Nations and demand that they be heard. Below is a sample letter I wrote if you’d like to use as a starting point.

President Obama

Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell

Director of the US Fish and Wildlife Dan Ashe: dan_ashe@fws.gov

The fact that we are discussing the removal of the grizzly bear from the Endangered Species Act should be seen in a positive light, considering that should indicate they are no longer in immediate risk of extinction. However, I don’t see it in a positive light at all. We still have a lot more work to do to ensure their long term survival. With talk of trophy hunting before the protections are even lifted is deeply troubling. Our current efforts should be placed on creating corridors (protected lands, animal bridges and tunnels) from Yellowstone to Yukon so that these bears can exist—not on a protected island—but an expansive ecosystem. As a keystone species they play a vital role in the overall health of our land. And let’s face it, when it comes to our environment, we need all the help we can get. I stand in solidarity with GOAL, a tribal coalition of nearly 50 Tribal Nations in support of keeping protections for the grizzly. I want to encourage you to listen and work with these Tribal Nations on this matter. Not only do they recognize the critical role they play in the overall health of our environment but they also honor the spiritual role as well. Stripping the grizzlies from the land, strips the spirit from the people, myself included. Allowing people to trophy hunt is a gross disrespect of Native American culture and all who hold wildlife sacred. These tribes contain so much knowledge and experience in regards to coexisting with wildlife that we can certainly learn from. Their wisdom is truly valuable and I hope you will strongly consider their voices when it comes to policy making.

Want to go even further? Write a physical letter to Obama, Jewell and Ashe. Comment here with your physical address and I’ll send you three Wild Within cards for free, addressed to Obama, Jewell and Ashe.

 

 

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