The Critter of the Month is…

…the wild mustang. 

mustangs

These days, what with inflation, deflation, stagflation, and flationflation, and the abundance of stories about Man’s inhumanity to Man and Beast, it’s refreshing to come across a a true feel-good story. 

Such a story was reported in an editorial in yesterday’s New York Times.  http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/20/opinion/20thu4.html?ref=opinion

The news is that Madeleine Pickens, the wife of T. Boone Pickens (is it just me, or does anyone else think he comes across as a bit loony?) is creating a one million acre sanctuary for wild horses and will take all the ones now in captivity, about 30,000 in all.  Wild horses are “managed” by the Bureau of Land Management, and the NYT wryly notes that “wild” horses are being preserved by being captured and confined in holding pens.  There are, according to the NYT article, about 33,000 horses still roaming free and until Mrs. Pickens stepped up the plate, the BLM was planning to cull the wild herd further by killing 6,000 of them.  But before we get too self-righteous about the BLM, it’s important to remember that this is a complex problem. (Please stay tuned for my next post, “Whining about the Government”). 

Ranchers consider wild horses to be pests, and looking at it from their viewpoint, that’s true.  Horses eat grass.  Let’s take a couple of other animals as examples:  elephants trample crops, and cheetahs kill livestock.  It isn’t enough to tell people who are trying to make a living to just get over themselves because wild horses, elephants and cheetahs are good to have on the planet. 

I suppose there will be those who think Mrs. Pickens should have used her money to help people as opposed to wild horses, but if we survive all our current woes, it would be nice to survive on a planet worth living on.

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