Needless killing of bear cubs reflects dark side of our species
Last week, I received a call from a frequent caller (who was terribly upset) to ask if I had heard that "they" had killed the two baby bears. He's not able to use a computer and has never grasped that few such atrocities can be reported in Canada without me hearing about it, many times over.
The cubs, hyper-cute, had been featured on Twitter under the hashtag #sofreakingcute. They were photographed in a wheat bin, nestled in the grain while awaiting the return of mom. But, mom was found dead nearby. These were brown bears, popularly called grizzly bears in North America, and are listed as "threatened" in Alberta, where this happened. "They," in this case, refers to officials represented by the Alberta Division of Fish and Wildlife of the Ministry of the Environment and Sustainable Development. Think "oilsands" and pipelines. Yes, THAT Alberta.
Then, the caller asked me a simple but powerful question: "How could they? How could anyone do such a thing?" What he does not know is that I have struggled with variations of that question all my life, back to when I did things I'd now never do, and can't really say why I did. Oh, we were treated to the usual disclaimer by a "senior officer" who said, "As of Friday morning, we hadn't found a zoo to take them, so unfortunately, they were put down. As much as that's distasteful for everybody involved, it was the best thing for these little gaffers."