Soon the Humane Society of the United States, (HSUS) will initiate their anti-bear trapping, hounding and baiting signature gathering effort. If they are successful in gathering the nearly 60,000 signatures necessary to place the question on a referendum ballot, the debate will begin in earnest and at certain times will be very emotional on both sides. Our organization will oppose their efforts.
It is extremely important sportsmen and women and the public do not confuse the actions of HSUS with our local animal shelters and the important work they and their volunteers do for our communities.
The HSUS is a national animal rights group that specializes in animal rights litigation and using the referendum process to promote their agenda. They raised $130 million dollars last year to promote that national agenda and gave just pennies back to actually support local animal shelters. Their political tactics can be ruthless as our organization learned earlier in the year, read here.
The HSUS uses their money for mostly political purposes; to the contrary, local animal shelters do the work of angels caring for abused and neglected animals. My wife volunteers at one of our local animal shelters and we support them financially. It is very important that all of us continue to support our local animal shelters and do not confuse the two organizations.
It is likely that five million dollars will be spent during the referendum campaign and most of that money by HSUS. If I had one wish during the campaign it would be that the HSUS would abandon their referendum efforts and donate the millions to local animal shelters. The positive difference that money could have on the lives of thousands of animals and their care givers is endless.
David Trahan, a former Maine state legislator, is the executive director of the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine