Readers’ Forum



Dear editor:

On 01/13/14, the Times Observer ran an article regarding the permit to hunt an endangered black rhino, in the African nation of Namibia, that had been auctioned off by the Dallas Safari Club in Texas.

The money raised is supposedly going toward protection and conservation of the species. It seems insane to me that an animal will be killed in the name of protecting the species. I just don’t feel that the ends justify the means. There are many other ways, to raise money for conservation that don’t include cruelty. This hunt is for one reason, and one reason only – a trophy.

The Safari Club’s executive director states the rhino is old, male, and nonbreeding, thus making it O.K. to kill him. Also, hunting an animal on a reserve is far from sportman-like.

Where is the sport in chasing an elderly animal in a fenced area? There are less the 5,000 black rhinos in the world, and fewer than 1,800 in Namibia, where the hunt will take place.

Every single one of them is important. It makes me wonder what kind of person would want to kill a rare and beautiful animal just for fun. In order to bring the “trophy” into the United States, the person must get a permit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Please write to them and ask that this permit be denied. The address is U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Attn. – Dan Ashe, Director, 1849 C Street NW, Washington, DC 20240. Let them know that killing in the name of conservation is unacceptable and that anything that increases the chances of a species becoming extinct is just plain wrong.

Please do whatever you can to stop this inhumane practice and help save the black rhino. Remember, extinction is forever. It will be an extremely sad day when your grandchildren and their offspring can only see the image of an animal in books, because they are extinct. The planet is for all of us, including the animals.

Thank you for listening,

Renee Tower