Last Thursday, the Associated Press distributed the following story on a new federal board:
Trophy hunters pack Trump wildlife protection board
From the article:
Trophy hunters are packed on a new U.S. advisory board created to help rewrite federal rules for importing the heads and hides of African elephants, lions and rhinos. That includes some members with direct ties to President Donald Trump and his family.
A review by The Associated Press of the backgrounds and social media posts of the 16 board members appointed by Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke indicates they will agree with his position that the best way to protect critically threatened or endangered species is by encouraging American hunters to shoot some of them.
The next day, another AP story looked more closely at the board's membership:
There's little indication dissenting perspectives will be represented on the Trump administration's conservation council. Appointees include celebrity hunting guides, representatives from rifle and bow manufacturers, and wealthy sportspeople who boast of bagging the coveted "Big Five" — elephant, rhino, lion, leopard and Cape buffalo.
Most are high-profile members of Safari Club International and the National Rifle Association, groups that have sued the Fish and Wildlife Service to expand the list of countries from which trophy kills can be legally imported.
One of the members described in the AP story is Steven Chancellor:
According to Safari Club member hunting records obtained in 2015 by the Humane Society, Chancellor has logged nearly 500 kills — including at least 18 lions, 13 leopards, six elephants and two rhinos.
In early 2016, records show Chancellor filed for a federal permit to bring home the skin, skull teeth and claws from another male lion he intended to kill that year in Zimbabwe, which at the time was subject to an import ban imposed by the Obama administration.
Yes, he will be serving on Trump's wildlife protection board.
As the editors of the Intelligencer often do, they didn’t publish either of the AP reports preferring instead to run a short editorial. At first glance the title for this morning’s editorial, “Protect Endangered Species in Africa,” suggests that it questions the Trump board’s make-up and without any elaboration, the editorial notes that “critics say too many of the panel’s members are trophy hunters.” It’s conclusion, however, is firmly in support of the Trump board:
Trump’s advisory board should be judged, then, not on its members but on whether it suggests the effective conservation measures that are vital.
If you read the AP articles, this is a sham of a board. That our local “newspaper” defends it suggests how much it supports anything that this president does. Maybe there are newspaper chains that are more pro-Trump than Ogden Newspapers. If there are, I’m not familiar with them.