Letter to the editor: Squirrel Scramble not way to introduce youth to nature
To the editor:
With regard to the Tonganoxie squirrel hunt story in the Feb. 6 edition of the paper (Lawrence Journal-World) I must ask: So some people see killing 2,000 or more squirrels in a single day as good old-fashioned fun? And not just any squirrels either, but the heaviest and healthiest — those best able to survive and keep the genes of the species healthy?
So this is how some of us introduce our children to nature and ecology now? No wonder the natural world is in trouble, let alone the state of humanity.
Compassion begets compassion and cruelty grows as you feed it. Yes, cruelty. It is cruel to harm something weaker than yourself simply because you can. It is cruel to kill something simply for your own pleasure. There are many of us sickened by this “hunt” because of how it affects the animals alone. We feel that their lives and place on the planet are important and should be respected, but I realize some people only care about human life and are not troubled by this unnecessary slaughter.
To them I just say, remember that contempt for the life of a vulnerable animal can quite easily lead to contempt for the welfare of weaker humans. As Ghandi said, “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
The people who participated in this bit of cruelty Saturday in Tonganoxie made us all poorer in spirit.