REACTIONS are coming in to the return of Canberra’s kangaroo cull. First out of the blocks were the Animal Protectors Alliance:
Numerous opponents of the ACT government’s kangaroo slaughter promise to continue their annual protest against what they describe as an ‘obscene, mindless massacre’.
Robyn Soxsmith, spokesperson for the Animal Protectors Alliance (APA), is furious the government has announced yet another slaughter this year. The slaughter begins this evening.
This morning, Ms Soxsmith asserted:
“Once again, the ACT government has ignored all the scientific evidence which shows that kangaroo populations do not and never have needed to be culled, because they control their own populations – far better than humans do.”
“Once again they have ignored the statistical data that shows eastern grey kangaroos to be in alarming decline across their entire range.”
“Once again they have ignored the eye witness accounts of extreme cruelty during their annual kill-fest, especially to young at foot who are orphaned to starve to death by the hundreds.”
“They have still never answered the 2013 evidence from their own burial pit where a young kangaroo had been shot, stabbed, bludgeoned before dying of suffocation and/or blood loss.”
“They still haven’t answered the incontrovertible documented proof provided by the APA that last year they shot on public land outside the reserves, without giving the public any warning they were doing so. It’s only pure dumb luck no-one was killed.”
The recent conviction of an elderly man for hindering the massacre has only made the protestors even more determined.
“Chris was maintaining a lawful vigil in a place where he had every right to be. He was determined to break no laws. When he heard the shrieking of a wounded kangaroo, of course he tried to get the rangers to do something about it, how could he not? Now he has a criminal record.”
‘This is no longer just about the kangaroos. This is now about the basic human right to engage in lawful and peaceful protest.”
Asked what the public could expect from the opponents, Ms Soxsmith said:
“Protestors will be out in force, some maintaining a vigil, while others will attempt to hinder the shooting with their usual tactics.”
“What I can guarantee is the presence of protestors outside the reserves, though I can also guarantee they won’t always be visible.”
The Animal Justice Party was not far behind:
The ACT Government is continuing to ignore non-lethal alternatives to the unnecessary slaughter of thousands of kangaroos in public reserves in the nation’s capital.
National President of the Animal Justice, Party Professor Steve Garlick said today that the ACT Labor Government and the Greens had ignored calls to use well-researched and well-used non-lethal wildlife management practices instead of cruelly shooting, beheading and bashing to death the country’s national emblem.
“The government is refusing to use such proven non-lethal wildlife management measures as wildlife corridors, translocation and fertility control and has instead opted for a lazy policy of brutal cruelty towards a gentle and inoffensive animal. In so doing, the ACT Government panders to the ignorant and dangerous in our society,” he said.
“If there is a scientifically proven ecological need to control these animals, and we don’t believe such a need has as yet been demonstrated, there is a far more humane and responsible way to do it. The government and the Greens are fully aware of this.
“Alternative humane measures need to be implemented and the government needs to be transparent in all that it does in managing kangaroos.
“It must also abandon its current practice of sneaking culling announcements out at times when it knows they will be missed by much of the community.
“The ACT Labor and Greens coalition government has made obfuscation an art form, reduced environmental and budgetary accountability and belittled rigorous scientific debate through its promotion of ongoing killing sprees of kangaroos”.
This highlights a seriously disturbing weakness in leadership character that requires urgent action if the community’s values of compassion, honesty and creativity are to remain steadfast.
At the forthcoming federal election and the October ACT election the Animal Justice Party will be calling on the ALP and the Greens to show cause why their lack of moral concern for animals should not be rejected by the ACT community and communities everywhere across the nation. This is a vital national issue if we are to have a smart and compassionate Australia. The alternative is unacceptable.
In the end, the way we treat animals in the ACT and throughout the nation is a reflection of the way we regard ourselves as humans in the community world at large.