President Trump Holds Off on Allowing Reversal of Wildlife Rule For Trophy Hunting…

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said Thursday that permitting elephants from Zimbabwe and Zambia to be brought back as trophies will raise money for conservation programs in the region.  President Trump has put that decision on hold:

No-one outside Africa wants to see elephants hunted.  Local poachers are killing thousands of elephants.  The goal of the Wildlife Service conservation effort is to increase the live value of elephants which are currently being killed by locals.

Elephants are endangered.  In the aggregate current conservation approaches are not working, except in areas where they are viewed as having high value to the community.

If elephants are not valued as a financial commodity by the locals, they have no disposition/incentive not to kill them. The goal of conservation is to increase the value of individual elephants to the local community, more valuable than the poaching value, thereby protecting ALL OF THEM from human slaughter. –Elephant Census Report

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284 Responses to President Trump Holds Off on Allowing Reversal of Wildlife Rule For Trophy Hunting…

  1. darth641 says:

    If the objective is to protect large species from extinction in Africa, then regulated (and very costly via fees & taxes paid by the hunters) is one of the best ways to do that…the same way we manage the deer and other populations in the US. If left unchecked, elephant, lion and other herds would grow too large and overgraze, resulting in starvation.

    I costs money to manage the herds and police against poaching. If you are an African nation with a limited budget and a population that is living hand to mouth, then the concerns of “do gooder” westerners ain’t high on your priorities. However, if wildlife management can be funded by regulated hunting and also by the way, bring tourism jobs to the area, it’s a win for all involved…including the endangered species.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Jenny R. says:

      Have a nice, healthy habitat full of nice, healthy diverse populations of animals and you get not only the hunting industry but also the photo safari industry as well 😉
      Basically, we are asking the Africans to become the conservers, the shepherds if you will, of their wildlife — well, the shepherds deserve to be paid for their labors; they deserve to be able to provide for themselves from their labor. They deserve their lives too.
      To ask them to do it for free is not only not pragmatic, it’s kinda vicious.

      Liked by 1 person

    • KPomeroy says:

      Are elephants really in danger of becoming overpopulated? I doubt it. But I think there are two sides to the overpopulation-leads-to-starvation theory.

      First let me say, this theory is a rationalization proposed by people who enjoy killing animals, which is cruel and insensitive beyond my comprehension. But for those who do not enjoy killing, there are scientific studies that support the idea that animal populations reach a natural maximum, beyond which they slow or even stop reproduction. The group eventually reaches a balanced stable population level where there is no starvation. Of course, this theory would be a disappointment to the blood-lovers, who deep down surely feel terrible each time they kill. At least my brother-in-law, who used to hunt and then quit, said the hunters only pretend to enjoy it, but actually it’s a horrible experience.

      Like

  2. applevista says:

    As a conservative I too am against hunting and shooting elephants. We don’t hunt and shoot jackasses; The opposing party mascot.

    Like

    • Jenny R. says:

      Nah, we just ship them (along with horses and mules) to Mexico on double decker trailers, to have a horrid thirsty, beaten existence until it gets knifed in the spinal column and hung (still often living) by its back feet until it’s belly is sliced open in some Mexican abattoir.
      Because we have found ourselves opposed to slaughter equids in the U.S.

      Or we just allow the excess to live lives of abuse and starvation…or pay to round them all up and keep them in federal holding facilities (until some of them get sold off, often to wind up in aforementioned Mexican abattoir).

      The Bambi-ization of animals will be the death of them — I compare it to the “green energy” movement.

      “Yep, it’s okay to send this little guy to Mexico to get slaughtered in a torturous fashion, just as long as it’s not in my backyard…but please, think of the noble, beautiful elephants and their cute babies!”

      Liked by 3 people

  3. auscitizenmom says:

    I am torn about this. One the one hand, I can’t help but wonder if this whole discussion was started by some Obamanians expecting to make a lot of money off of it. And, on the other hand, it is true that the locals kill the elephants and help the poachers.

    Like

    • I know it’s tough auscitizenmom, but human nature and economics being what they are – it all boils down to results. What does the data indicate? Supply/ Demand + compassion =? I don’t have any data in front of me, but I do understand basic economic principles, which tell me that the incentive to protect elephants boils down to financial interests moreso than how cute they look to poor African ppl.

      If we’re after results then we must make the best decision for the best and most realistic reasons. Take welfare for example: from a juvenile perspective it feels better to just feed hungry ppl, but from a realistic perspective, if we actually go this route, it just incentivizes and encourages the recipients to loaf and collect a check. Game Theory… Our brains developed to take the easiest route possible – conservation of energy.

      Liked by 1 person

      • auscitizenmom says:

        Isn’t the saying about giving a man a fish will feed him for the day, and teaching him to fish will feed him for his lifetime?

        I had an ongoing argument with my husband for years. I said if a man is laying in the street, hungry and sick, you bring him in, feed him, and help him heal. If he goes back out and lays in the street again……….let him. He said I was hardhearted. But, eventually he told me he finally realized why I said that. He needs to take responsibility for himself.

        Liked by 4 people

        • Yep, I agree. My Wife and I volunteer for stuff all the time because charity is a huge part of our life philosophy – we’ve fed, clothed many ppl over the years, as well as huge toy drives around the holidays, but since we actually care what kind of impact we make we have to do these things with full understanding and intentionality.

          This is growth for us, and it makes perfect sense now that we are older. I think that this is a key difference between Liberals and Conservatives – immediate gratification vs. true impact. As it relates to the wildlife ruling, it’s just as important, and to be honest I didn’t think it all the way through until I read SD’s post. Thanks for the follow through SD and fellow Treepers, as always!

          Like

          • auscitizenmom says:

            I remember reading some years ago about the forest fires in the West. The environmentalists had made the forestry service stop their control burning in the forests. The results have been fuel for the horrible fires we see. I don’t know if that has changed, but I know it contributed to a lot of fire damage of the very forests they said they were trying to save. Sometimes people need to know what they are talking about.

            As far as helping people goes, we definitely need to. We just don’t need to make them dependent on us.

            Liked by 2 people

            • progpoker says:

              The Tahoe National Forest is full of trees that were decimated by a beetle invasion. The EcoNazis won’t allow the affected trees to be removed while there is still some value. They’d rather leave them as fuel for the next super fire that they’ll blame on Climate Change. So tired of the crap!!

              Liked by 2 people

      • Jenny R. says:

        I think that one of the things that is a problem for Americans (and others) is this notion of “they’re so cute”.
        I like elephants; they’re fascinating creatures. I want them around even though I will likely never see one in the wild.

        But I also think foxes, coyotes, and wolves are fascinating creatures and want them around too — and I get to see those in the wild (in truth, only coy-wolves from time to time here). They’re babies are cute too (we used to have a vixen and her kits that would come out and play under the streetlights…trust me, very cute and charming to watch). And while I’m willing to live with them, I wouldn’t find it cute of them, or noble, to eat all my livestock or threaten my family. Black bears are another good example. Ask a rural American if they hate the animals (you’ll find many don’t) or if they have a healthy regard for just what a wild animal can do to you (many do). Ask them if they have a problem with hunting (most don’t some would like all wild animals wiped out from their area — because they’ve had problems with them).

        Cecil the lion and Elton the elephant are only tres, tres adorable to us because we don’t have them in our gardens or walking down our streets, munching our crops and threatening our families — many Africans have to live with that, and they don’t find them all that cute. We are asking them to do something we ourselves don’t do…and blaming them for basically having the same thoughts we do when we are in the same situation. We can afford to Bambi-ize elephants (some of us can afford to still Bambi-ize deer…because we don’t have them wandering through our gardens; notice that stops when people actually have to live with them; another example: fox hunting, how awful, but setting poison out for them when they come in and start to raid our urban pet chicken coops is ok…and poison is far worse a thing I might add).

        Which means the Africans will continue to kill these animals, just like we do ours, whether we like it or not — the only way to rectify the situation as I see it is to give the Africans some incentive to not kill them all off…just like we do here (or not do…we’ve got issues of our own when it comes to wildlife management).

        Liked by 2 people

        • The Jimmy Jack says:

          They’re setting them on fire somewgere – I️ think India bc of how they destroy crops. It’s easy for us to say they’ve should be protected at all costs when the people who live with them are starving.

          Liked by 1 person

          • margarite1 says:

            Zimbabwe wasn’t starving before the white farmers were driven out – are they starving now?

            The Indians ought to figure out a better way to deal with their crops other than setting elephants on fire for fun. So outrageous!

            Liked by 2 people

      • darth641 says:

        The data indicate that a well run hunting/culling program, not only manages herd sizes to keep them healthy, but also fund themsleves thrugh licensing fees. It also gives th lovcal populace a reason to view the animals as an asset, as opposed to economic threats (elephant overgrazing) or mortal threats (lions eating their kids).

        Liked by 1 person

  4. redridge45 says:

    Agree Sundance, same nonsense with wild horses. Ah, living in Wonderland!

    Like

    • Matthew Musson says:

      Notice that Black Bears and Alligators have returned to 19th century numbers because they are now respected and treated as a valuable resource.

      Like

    • Jenny R. says:

      I happen to like the wild horses and think they’re ok in manageable numbers (horses evolved on the N. American continent, so they are very suited to living there). However, the way we are managing them (actually, not managing them) is not helping the horses, the ranchers, the taxpayer, or the environment.
      Of course, we outlawed the domestic slaughter of equids because “omg! so horrible” — now they face going to Mexico, which is an even more horrid fate. Happens to our domesticated equids too; pretty horrible. This could have been avoided if certain laws about the transport and handling of them had been put into place — they cannot be handled the same way pigs and cattle are; they aren’t the same sort of animal and to do so is pretty inhumane (animals do deserve some consideration after all — the pigs and the cows do too; I suggest reading Temple Grandin).
      This is rather the same thing with other wild animals — I happen to like them and will cope with having them around, even if it means taking some precautions. I’m not a fan of the “kill them all” crowd. But there has to be some working compromise.
      People have to be willing to compromise and hit a happy balance — it won’t be winning everything you individually might want, but it will be a win of a sort for everything…and that’s probably the best outcome.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Michael says:

    “If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and man.”

    ― Mark Twain

    Liked by 4 people

  6. Founding Fathers Fan says:

    The solution is to adopt an elephant and take it home as a pet. 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  7. theresanne says:

    Maybe Europe should import all the elephants and send all the migrants back to their homelands in Africa. At least that would cut down on the rape epidemic.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Rainer says:

    The population of Africa will double to 2 billion by 2050, and if the current birthrates continue, will double again to 4 billion by 2100. The elephants are doomed, and so are the open-border liberal democracies of Western Europe and North America.

    Like

  9. Andy says:

    Sundance, with all due respect… once you fall back to the ideological position that the best way to protect a species is to allow the exploitation of them by hunting and killing, you have already lost the argument (and the battle) for their conservation. President Trump has taken exactly the right action here, and I trust he will decide to continue the ban on this repugnant trade!

    Liked by 1 person

    • William Friday Buckley's Ghost says:

      The only problem with your position is that 99% of the elephants are killed by Native African poachers sometimes just for the tusks. By allowing wealthy hunters to take a few under strict guidelines like no females and l paying hundreds of thousands of dollars the government can afford to provide more rangers, wardens and protected parks for the animals. The problem is basically the locals are doing all the killing and how are YOU going to stop that?

      Liked by 1 person

    • Andy says:

      William, the locals are doing all the killing to sell the tusks and other body parts to FOREIGNERS, not African locals. So, YOU AND I must pressure our representatives in government to re-double efforts to shut down the illegal trade in these body parts, and use our nations’ influence in Asia to shut down the domestic markets for these products as well. I’m sorry you don’t seem to be able to see that more death and payment by (disgusting) wealthy foreigners for the privilege is not the way to help Africa’s struggling elephants… our wonderful President Trump is clearly on the right track here!

      Like

  10. Pharnham says:

    I don’t think romanticism about animals in foreign countries should guide domestic policy. There are no elephants in America, and elephants have no impact on anything American. It isn’t conservative I don’t think to meddle in the affairs of foreign nations, or seek to make them conform to our notions of animal welfare.

    Conservation of our domestic species is a valid American concern, but not of a foreign species with no strategic or commercial value to Americans. America should not presume to be the conservator of the planetary natural realm.

    Like

    • Andy says:

      Pharnham, sticking your head in the sand is no way to help create a better world… especially on an issue such as this, which requires no financial or military effort whatsoever by the United States, in order to make a difference.

      Like

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