Activists hurting hunters, fisherman

Published in Windsor Star, March 23, 2011

Re: Sealing a dead industry, by Chrissy Vanderheide-Stolarski, March 18.

It is disingenuous and hypocritical for activists like Ms. Vanderheide-Stolarski to campaign around the world to destroy consumer markets for seal products and then argue that the seal hunt is not worthy of government support because it no longer brings in much money.

In these difficult economic times, it is disgraceful that selfappointed activists feel justified in attacking the livelihoods and cultures of people they have never met, people who actually live close to nature. I don’t think that Atlantic fishermen or Inuit hunters need lessons about respecting nature from urban activists.

ALAN HERSCOVICI, executive vice-president, Fur Council of Canada, Montreal, Que.

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The Government still values seal hunt

My letter has been published in the Edmonton Journal on Tuesday, September 21 2010

RE: “Attempt to change world’s view futile,” by Sen. Mac Harb, Letters, Sept. 10.

Sen. Mac Harb has every right to oppose the seal hunt, even if he is the only member of the entire Canadian Senate to do so.
His claim that “the EU is simply banning a product its citizens don’t want,” however, is self-serving poppycock.
If Europeans didn’t want seal products and weren’t buying any, as the senator claims, surely there would be no need to ban their import?
More to the point, if countries started banning everything some lobby group opposes, there wouldn’t be much left of the world trading system.
This would be especially devastating for Canada, a resource exporting country, which is why the Canadian government has launched a World Trade Organziation challenge against the EU’s arbitrary trade ban — and they are to be commended for it — because, as the senator rightly states: hard-working Canadians deserve real support.

Alan Herscovici, executive vice-president, Fur Council of Canada

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Time to speak up!

When i hear self-appointed “animal-rights” activists claiming that it’s better for nature to wear synthetics (i.e., non-renewable petroleum) than to wear fur (a natural renewable resource), I cringe!
When i hear activists preaching “respect for nature” to aboriginal or other trappers who actually live on and from the land, I fume!
When i see sanctimonious protesters attacking the livelihood and culture of hard-working trappers, fur farmers and craftspeople, I rage!
When i see members of the European Parliament pompously voting to ban the import of (highly abundant) sealskins from Canada, while refusing to stop overfishing of endangered Mediterranean tuna in their own waters…. i start a blog!
As someone raised in the fur trade, I have been saddened (and often angered) by the false and misleading campaigns waged by self-appointed “animal-rights” activists.
I began documenting the anti-ecological (and anti-human) impact of these campaigns in my book “Second Nature: The Animal-Rights Controversy” (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, 1985; General Publishing, 1991).
Twenty years later, the extremism of the animal-rights movement has only intensified.
It is time to set the record straight about these misleading and damaging campaigns — and about the true social, cultural, economic and ecological contributions of the fur trade, this remarkable Canadian heritage industry.
That’s why i am launching this blog.
I hope you find these musings interesting, and i invite you to add your comments!

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