Bear referendum requires educated decision
To the editor:
This year’s Question 1 wants to ban the use of bait, dogs and trapping bear in Maine. I feel it is cruel to use foot hold snares because you might not get back to your trap for 24 hours and the bear is suffering all this time. We shouldn’t want any animal to suffer. Even though they are animals there are humane ways to kill them without them suffering a long time. However the big cage traps are not cruel because they don’t hurt the animal in any way.
I do not think hunters should be allowed to bait bears with any food. This is not really hunting or fair because some hunters actually want to go out and hunt like my dad and I do. I think it’s more fun to track the animal and just walk through the woods looking for signs of bears in the area.
Baiting bears is like cheating on a test. There is plenty of time during the season to go out and track a bear. It is not fair that we keep feeding the bears and they might stop hunting naturally. If we keep feeding the bears they might come into our community and hurt people or attack kids playing.
I do think it is OK to use dogs to track bears. Hunters have tracked animals with dogs for hundred of years. Hunters are not being lazy, they still have to run and chase the bears to shoot them.
This referendum is very confusing because there might be a lot of other people like me that agree with some parts of this but not others. I wish we could pick the specific parts to vote down. Since people can only vote to ban it all or keep it all the same and legal, my personal opinion would be to “No” even though I don’t agree with all of it.
Hundreds of people in Maine depend on hunting bears. People that own camps or are guides would be finished because it wouldn’t be as easy to hunt. If we could not hunt as easily bears will become even more over populated and cause greater danger to people.
I hope other people in Maine really look at all the things in the Bear Referendum this year and make an educated decision based on all the facts, where we live and what might happen if we change the laws now.
12-year old Boy Scout