Born Free USA Blog
by Will Travers,
Chief Executive Officer
What can you say about a big-hearted bloke who has rescued dolphins, tigers, elephants and more and whose parents once helped a lion cub from a department store by caring for him in their backyard and engineering his rightful return to Africa? You can safely say that he's got great animal instincts! In 1984, Will Travers joined his parents — "Born Free" film stars Virginia McKenna and Bill Travers — to form what became The Born Free Foundation. With knowledge, passion and compassion dripping from his every word, Will's blogs are sure to make you embrace our crusade to Keep Wildlife in the Wild ®.
The U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance has announced that Born Free USA is one of the Top 10 anti-trapping organizations in the country.
I am overwhelmed with emotion. We are humbled to be honored in this way, and so very grateful. There are so many people to thank, but I will try to be brief in my acceptance remarks.
I wish to thank our senior program associate, Monica Engebretson, for her diligent and comprehensive work on this issue. She helped orchestrate our undercover investigation of the horrors of trapping, “Victims of Vanity”; oversees our innovative Trapping Victims Fund; and spearheaded our annual celebration of fur free fashion, fffashion.” She also is fond of reminding us that for every targeted animal trapped, at least two and probably many more non-targeted animals — including dogs and cats — are injured or killed by these indiscriminate devices.
I also wish to thank Adam Roberts, Born Free USA’s executive vice president, for his careful stewardship of our trapping programs and campaigns. He often talks to the media about trapping, including last year with CNN’s Jane Velez-Mitchell. Our creative and development staff members have publicized that work and ensured that we have the funding to continue it. Thank you, team.
And of course I would like to thank my mother, Virginia McKenna, for her constant support and for helping me launch a lifetime of advocacy for animals, including those whose lives are interrupted and often ruined, with immense pain and for no legitimate reason, by trappers.
Lastly, of course, I must acknowledge the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance. Thank you for placing us in your Top 10. Thank you for believing in us. Although we would have preferred you had ranked us higher than No. 6, in so doing you have inspired us to redouble our efforts to bring about the end of trapping. Thanks to you, we now are more committed than ever to that goal.
And I must say that your continued trumpeting of the rights of trappers, and how they play “an important role in sound wildlife management practices and helps numerous wildlife species, including song birds and waterfowl populations,” is really inspired. Using satire to mock what obviously is a cruel, senseless, outdated, ignorant and hateful practice is a clever way to get across the message that trapping must end.
I am so impressed by your satirical approach that I am tempted to try it myself. But you do it so well, without any hint that you are kidding, that I am not sure I can rise to your level.