I am asking all voters who haven't already sent in their ballots to vote NO on Proposals 1 and 2, Both of these proposals involve the threatened extinction of Michigan wolves. Two years ago, we who supported the value of keeping our wolves safe, submitted over a quarter of a million signatures to put the issue on the ballot and won. However, the current Michigan legislature found ways to bypass our victory.
In the 70s, the wolf was almost decimated in the state of Michigan so the ESA gave them protected status. From a measly three wolves counted in the entire state, the population grew to 650 by 2013. So how did the state celebrate their recovery status? By Michigan's governor Rick Snyder signing legislation declaring wolves fair game for hunting.
To combat that decision, a March 13 petition calling for a referendum to undo the call to arms and protect the wolves garnered more than a quarter of a million signatures. But not to be defeated, the Michigan legislature did an end-run around the public outcry by handing power over to the unelected Natural Resources Commission (NRC) to decide which animals can be hunted.
As a regulatory body, any decisions made by the NRC are not reversible by public vote. Proposal 2 is even more alarming because it is designed to give a seven-member body appointed by the governor the ability to remove any or all species (except mourning doves) from the protection list. They need no public vote for or against; they can just arbitrarily remove them.
Unlike deer hunting where people eat their kill, wolf hunters are individuals who want to hunt them only for their heads or hides—not for food, and not to control individual animals who come into conflict with people. PA 290 and PA 318 already allows for the removal or killing of problem wolves, which is the most effective method of dealing with conflicts.
Please consider voting “no” on both Proposals 1 and 2.
– Sybil Diccion
Main Street, Morenci