08 February 2006

Conservation, Texas-style

I've always thought of Texas as a truly alien land, possibly biased from an early age from watching those odd "dream" episodes of Dallas. But this takes the biscuit. Something I've learned since arriving here is that the American male is always right. This seems to be a country built on the alpha male (not that there aren't alpha males in other societies, they just bug me more here). And it doesn't matter what experience or knowledge you have here, if you cannot shout as loud as the alpha male, no one will pay any attention to you. The alpha male will find his viewpoint to be absolutely correct and infallible, failing to take into consideration any obvious logical and moral flaws it may have.

"What species has the Humane Society ever saved?" [Erice White] asks.

"They just want to save one animal - perhaps called Bambi - but we have a long-standing record of saving entire species and entire habitats. Hunting is the only way to generate enough dollars to do it."

Several things jar about this quote. For one, the point of a "Humane Society" is to seek out and prevent undue cruelty to animals. It's besides the point to accuse them of not saving a species; it's not their mandate. And to say so is to throw in a red herring. And I'm not sure these ranch safaris can accurately claim to save "entire species" nor "entire habitats", as what they must have are small breeding colonies, which will eventually (soon) result in a highly inbred population, plus I wouldn't call an American ranch a natural habitat of species such as the antelope.

Besides, as humans have advanced beyond the rest of the animal kingdom and no longer need to fear starvation or death-by-bear, what does such hunting satisfy other than the craving to kill?

2 comments:

Michelle Knight said...

Just a general post to say "Hi!" - been following your blog on and off for a while. You could suggest that they replace the live animals with paper ones; worked for me at the range :-) It would save them staff costs, and they could then use the land for the reserve they profess supporting.

Oops, coming up to 8:30 here. Back to work :-( U.K. may be nannied, (wonders when Blair is going to give out free adult nappies on the NHS for citizens) but at least we're all good at hooking up VCR's!

bramble said...

Hi Michelle,
Thanks for popping in. I like your suggestion; but perhaps with Texan-Americans, gigantic animatronic replicas would work better. (Although you've now got the image of origami animals in a firing range stuck in my mind!)

As you can probably tell from this late reply, this blog has been more off than on recently, but I hope that will change soon. So keep those comments coming...

Cheers,
akatsukira