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U.S. | Animal Liberation

Restoration of Bison to Prairie Will End Yellowstone Slaughter
by STOP US GOV. Sanctioned Bison Slaughter!!
Tuesday Nov 28th, 2006 1:04 PM
Restoration of bison to their ancestral prairie territory is the future component from the critical response actions (ie., BFC) preventing the slaughter of Yellowstone's bison herd by insecure Montana cattle ranchers and their US government hired guns..
This is a follow-up article to the continuous slaughter of Yellowstone's bison herd, carried out by US government and Montana, at the request of Montana's cattle ranchers. Includes critique of veganism's "ethical" arguement that bison have the "right" not to be eaten. Consider this article to be provacative to BOTH militant bison killing cattle ranchers and militant vegan idealogues..

Background on ongoing campaign to save bison from US government guns;

http://www.buffalofieldcampaign.org/

The Buffalo Field Campaign (BFC) represents a grassroots response to a crisis facing the small remainder of bison herds in Yellowstone, as North Coast Earth First! treesitters represent a grassroots response to clearcut/oldgrowth logging of vanishing redwoods ecosystem in NorCal. Neither one of these critical response groups is expecting to remain camped out in the field when enough rational people organize to prevent the ongoing slaughter of bison or redwoods. To accomplish these goals of ending the slaughter we need a clear vision of an inclusive ecosystem restoration that places indigenous ecological wisdom at the forefront of the debate..

The bison herds returned to their original home range on the prairie would help the grasslands ecosystem and human beings. Militant veganism ideals that enforce animals as having the "right to live" and not be taken for food are not inclusive of the indigenous nations practices of sustainable and respectful harvesting of animals including bison for food, shelter, etc.. that functioned for several centuries prior to European settlement's cattle ranches..

There is a organization of several indigenous nations (ITBC) attempting to restore the bison to their ancestral territory, including the natural migrants from Yellowstone who dare to wander across the invisible 'border' into Montana's cattle rancher territory (ie., stolen land). Last i heard is that the ITBC has repeatedly told the US Park Service of their willingness to transport the Yellowstone bison to their remaining landspace (ie., reservations) to begin restoration of bison in their prairie territories across the midwest, great plains, etc...

This from ITBC;

"The American buffalo, also known as bison, has always held great meaning for American Indian people. To Indian people, buffalo represent their spirit and remind them of how their lives were once lived, free and in harmony with nature. In the 1800's, the white-man recognized the reliance Indian tribes had on the buffalo. Thus began the systematic destruction of the buffalo to try to subjugate the western tribal nations. The slaughter of over 60 million buffalo left only a few hundred buffalo remaining.

Without the buffalo, the independent life of the Indian people could no longer be maintained. The Indian spirit, along with that of the buffalo, suffered an enormous loss. At that time, tribes began to sign treaties with the U.S. Government in an attempt to protect the land and the buffalo for their future generations. The destruction of buffalo herds and the associated devastation to the tribes disrupted the self-sufficient lifestyle of Indian people more than all other federal policies to date.

To reestablish healthy buffalo populations on tribal lands is to reestablish hope for Indian people. Members of the InterTribal Bison Cooperative (ITBC) understand that reintroduction of the buffalo to tribal lands will help heal the spirit of both the Indian people and the buffalo.

Although some tribes and tribal members have been engaged in the production of buffalo for sale and/or for subsistence and cultural use, these activities have been conducted by each individual tribe, with little or no collaboration between tribes."

read on @;

Inter Tribal Bison Coopertive;
http://www.intertribalbison.org/

The problem as i see it isn't so much eating meat of bisons (simultaneous with restoration) or debating on whether animals have souls (of course they do!) and/or the "right" to exist prior to slaughter, the main problem for Yellowstone bison appears to be the ignorance, intolerance and insecurity of Montana's beef industry cattle ranchers who recognize that bison are ecologically fitter and require little or no care as compared to their needy imported and sickly beef cattle herds (pumped full of rBGH hormones, antibiotics, etc..). The brucellosis threat claimed by Montana cattle ranchers is the distraction from a heavily taxpayer subsidized beef industry that is going down in popularity, possibly to be replaced by a combination of veganism and limited sustainable hunting of indigenous ungulates (elk, bison, antelope) who are being restored (slowly but surely) to their indigenous habitats..

Exposing the brucellosis myth;

"The Montana Department of Livestock (DOL) claims it is slaughtering the Yellowstone bison because they carry brucellosis. This claim rings hollow in light of a few facts: There has never been a documented transmission of brucellosis from wild bison to livestock. Even if buffalo were capable of spreading the disease, there are no cattle on these lands from mid-October to mid-June, making brucellosis transmission impossible.

All bison captured and slaughtered this winter have been bulls, which are incapable of transmitting the disease. The ten bull bison slaughtered this week tested positive for brucellosis antibodies, not infection. Because bison are known to build natural resistance to brucellosis, these animals may actually be the strongest, healthiest animals of the herd. The overwhelming majority of bison slaughtered according to these test results don't actually carry the disease."

read on @;
http://www.buffalofieldcampaign.org/science/brucellosismyth.html

Again, capitalist economics trumps ecoscience, logic and rational dialogue, combined with brucellosis fearmongering from cattle ranchers and ethical red herrings from militant vegans. Why not restore native grasslands and their migratory bison herds as caretakers? If given a open prairie field to roam, how long before the bison herds return to their previous population sizes numbering in the millions? The greatest obstacle to the goal of bison restoration is the property division fences and the cattle ranchers who graze their herds on land stolen from the bison and indigenous nations..

The saying goes "When in Rome, do as the Romans do." Well, this land called north america sure isn't Rome, though it does belong to many sovereign tribal nations. Europeans, Africans and recent Asian immigrants to the americas need to recognize the ecological wisdom of indigenous nations and attempt to shape their modern lives to the recent past ecosystems nearly eradicated by settlers, disease and mass slaughter of bison. This includes a restoration of tallgrass/shortgrass prairie ecosystems and all their inhabitants, including bison, prairie dogs, etc..

Personally i desire to eat bison meat before my body returns to the Earth and simultaneously not be contributing to the extinction and/or domestication of bison as a species. Bison deserve to be roaming free in their indigenous grassland plains without threat of being killed for "trespassing" by some insecure and ignorant cattle ranchers. Fortunately groups like ITBC, BFC and the American Prairie Foundation are working together to prevent the bison from becoming extinct..

"Perhaps no species is as emblematic of the North American grasslands as the plains bison, whose numbers were described as “innumerable” by accounts of European explorers of the Great Plains in the early 19th century. Today, the plains bison is not only ecologically extinct, but is also threatened by the erosion of the wild bison genome. At the turn of the century, bison were crossbred with cattle in the hopes of mixing cattle’s domesticity with bison’s hardiness. Recent scientific findings have indicated the extensive impacts of hybridization; of the 500,000 bison alive today, fewer than 7,000 are genetically pure.

American Prairie Foundation’s long-term goal is to restore the genetic health and ecological role of bison as part of our mission to conserve native prairie wildlife. APF has the unique ability to provide a significant and lasting contribution to the conservation of bison in North America, and is in the process of creating one of the continent's most important conservation herds of genetically pure bison."

read on @;
http://www.americanprairie.org/index.php

To sum up;

There is NO LOGICAL REASON to for US government officials prevent the transport of the Yellowstone bison migrants to restored prairie habitats in the great plains region by either ITBC, APF or their allies. The slaughter of the Yellowstone bison by US government (or Montana state) employees is a crime against endangered species act. Those involved in the heirarchy decision making process that enabled the criminal slaughter of bison are also contributing to a cultural genocide of indigenous nations of the great plains and the extinction of bison..