Born Free USA Blog
by Adam M Roberts,
Chief Executive Officer
When it comes to animals, Adam Roberts not only talks the talk, but also walks the walk. Since beginning his animal advocacy career in Washington, D.C. in 1991, Adam's ambition, tireless involvement, and profound knowledge of conservation and wildlife issues have cemented him as a go-to voice for protecting animals — and he has elevated Born Free USA to the respected and impactful organization that we know today. Adam's compassionate, informed, and forward-thinking blogs will surely motivate you to join us in our fight to Keep Wildlife in the Wild.
Tom Venesky wrote last Sunday in The Times Leader of Wilkes-Barre, PA, that:
- Trapping keeps animals from being hit by vehicles.
- Traps are “the best tool to manage furbearer populations.”
- Trappers were misrepresented by Born Free USA in its recent undercover investigation.
- He knows best.
It doesn’t, they aren’t, they weren’t, and he doesn’t.
If you were told that you would live to be 95 years old, you might very well be pleased.
If you also were told that your entire life would be spent in one small house, with no excursions anywhere for any reason, and if you have mates you’ll have no say in who they are or how long you will be together, and you’ll be ordered around and punished by members of an entirely different species, and tourists will pay to stare at you every day, you might very well be discouraged.
The idea that bears are being farm-raised and permanently embedded with devices that remove their bile, until they die young, perhaps gratefully because of their horribly painful and restricted lives, just so that some person with an ailment fancies it will make him feel better, appalls me to no end.
To have a wild bear shot for fun seems … if not worse, no better.
If a video were to be filmed of me after watching the YouTube video “I Just Swam with a Siberian Tiger Cub,” it would be titled, “I Just Got Nauseated Watching Animal Mistreatment.”
On Monday in Southern California, at the end of a seven-hour meeting that lasted well into the wee hours, the West Hollywood City Council agreed unanimously to ban the sale of fur clothing — news that, in light of the unspeakable suffering and slaughter caused by trapping for the fur industry and coldly dispatched at so-called fur farms, makes me say:
About “bloody” time.
Though we’ve innately known it for some time, scientists are now declaring the harmful effects of using chimpanzees in movies and television — not just for the chimpanzees, but for humans, too. When chimps are anthropomorphized and depicted as engaging in human behaviors (buying insurance, eating sandwiches, driving cars, etc.), people are more likely to believe that chimpanzees are not endangered and that wild populations are steady and healthy. They also may start to think that chimpanzees are suitable “pets.”
We’re only one week into September but already we’ve heard reports about two major law enforcement actions that symbolize the widespread, vicious destruction of wild elephants. In Zambia, police in Ndola made three arrests tied to the confiscation of 166 pieces of ivory that were to be transported out of the country. More than 5,000 miles away in Malaysia, 695 elephant tusks destined for China were seized in Kuala Lumpur — the third of three summertime seizures there that totaled more than 1,750 tusks.
Although the general outlook for elephants these days is frightening — by some estimates, about 100 are killed every day in Africa to satisfy the bloody, illegal ivory trade — there have been bits of good news lately: last month, Kenya’s ceremonial burning of hundreds of confiscated illegal ivory tusks, and last week the conviction in the Republic of Congo of a Chinese national who had attempted to smuggle ivory items (five tusks, 80 chopsticks, three carvings, etc.) to China.