Letter copied to Bears Matter and reproduced with permission:
Subject: Super, Natural British Columbia and trophy hunting
Date: March 25, 2016 at 11:14:55 AM PDT
Dear Minister Bond,
I’ve lived and worked in British Columbia all my life and every day am grateful to have been born here. The recently launched Destination B.C. materials showcase our province’s people, the animals, the communities and pristine wild spaces and I think “yes, this is what my home looks like”.
But there is a glaring disconnect between what the material portrays of B.C. wildlife and the continued legal practice of trophy hunting in this province. It’s a serious schism. Killing wild animals for sport or trophy is a violent, disrespectful practice that certainly wouldn’t be included in tourism materials. This highlights a glaring misalignment of attitudes toward our wild species that needs to be remedied.
Trophy hunting does not hold social license with the majority of people who live in B.C. Opposition is gaining traction in the media and in public awareness. Convincing arguments against trophy killing run along economic, ecological, social and ethical lines. I assure you that opposition to trophy killing is not going to go away, but the government can get ahead of it and what better time than at the launch of a revamped showcase for Destination B.C. A bear that is shot can only be viewed once; a bear that is photographed can be viewed over many years, by many people. In every way, all of our wild species are worth far more alive than they are dead.
Someone in government must take action to end the needless suffering of animals who are good enough to advertise but not good enough to protect from trophy hunters’ guns. That person can be you, Ms. Bond.
On April 1st, the Spring hunt opens and trophy hunters will be scouring the woods hoping to “bag” the finest specimens of big game; animals who will suffer excruciating pain upon death, whose genes will be removed from the gene pool and whose loss will weaken the viability of the entire ecosystem of which they are part. All in the name of ego satisfaction for a few trophy hunters.
It is financially smart, ethically right and rationally consistent to ban merciless trophy killing of wildlife. They deserve to live free in their natural habitat, as they appear to do in BC tourism materials.