The Bear and Me

I used to do the odd spot of fishing in Lesser Garibaldi Lake.

One day I was walking down the trail holding my fishing pole and a brace of trout when I happened upon a black bear walking up the trail. I figured that I'd toss the fish at him and poke my rod in his eye if he charged. No need, Mr Bear stepped off the trail and cantered past me, following the contour of the mountain. When a black bear runs close by you, it sounds like a horse, the ground shakes.

I like to think that a bear and a human might sometimes share some creature comradery --- at least when he isn't hungry --- but I was happy enough to settle for indifference on that day.

By and large, I think that most people are quite hostile towards those who advocate comradery with wild creatures. For example, I was watching a video put out by the Discovery Channel. It was a part of the "Planet Earth" series, called "The Future --- Saving Species". A recurrent theme went along the lines:

"With so many poor people in the world, can we justify saving animals?"
The guilt trip behind this question is that if you're for other animals then you're against poor people. And I'd agree, but not in the way that most people imagine.

The honest answer to this question is that the major reason we have so many poor people is because the planet is overpopulated by semi-intelligent bipedal apes and the main reason that other animals need saving is because the planet is overpopulated by semi-intelligent bipedal apes.

So I do side with other species, humanity must lower its rate of reproduction.

Discovery Channel just couldn't say that. Not PC, I guess.

On the other side of the comradery ledger, sometimes we cull other species; wolves in Alberta, coyotes in Nova Scotia, whales in Japan, seals in Newfoundland, Kangaroos in Australia and rabbits everywhere. Good stewardship, don't you know? Their populations were getting out of control... It's the only humane thing to do. We're doing them a favour.

I guess it is an indication of their animosity, or indifference, that our planetmates don't return the favour? I'm sure that we'd all get along much better, if only they were more humane.