December 11, 2023

Governor Corzine's Got It All Wrong

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J.B. Kasper, outdoor columnist for The Times, has it right though. In his article today he chastises New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine for using the bear hunt as political leverage in order to garner votes.

Once again politics has entered the realm of wildlife management, and not for the better. I’m sure that New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine, with all his degrees in wildlife management, is much better suited to make decisions on wildlife than the trained professionals at the Division of Fish and Wildlife.

Pardon my sarcasm, but for the last several administrations I have watched as politicians who have absolutely no training or experience in wildlife management derail the sound judgment and planning of trained biologists, many of whom have spent their lives working with wildlife populations. Wildlife management plans, such as the five- year bear management plan that met with the approval of the state Supreme Court, that have been the subject of and approved by peer review by some of the best biologists from all over the country. One would think that a governor would respect and honor this kind of plan, not interfere with it.

Isn’t that the truth. Why is it that politicians often are heard saying, “You got to to trust me on this” or “This is a matter for lawmakers who understand this”, or better yet, “I’m looking out for the best interest of my constituency”? Mr. Corzine is an example of a politician who needs to practice what he preaches and have respect and confidence in the agency whose job it is to manage wildlife. But that’s not his agenda. He could care less of the science of the wildlife management agency. His agenda involves outlawing hunting. Another clear example of the left’s march to strip citizens of their rights in order to control and force their personal agendas on the masses.

Kasper puts it best when he describes Corzine and his approach.

A good example is the governor who made his millions in the tall, concrete trees of Wall Street, lives in the city and only sees the real outdoors as he passes through them in his chauffeur-driven limou sine. In short, he is out of touch with the real outdoors, if he ever was in touch with it in the first place. To him the bear problem is just another issue to work for votes. Maybe if his house or car was broken into by a 300-pound bear, his pet was killed or he had to sit in the car waiting for the school bus because it was not safe for his children to wait for the bus in the open, he might think differently.

Kasper then goes on to explain how management of deer has changed over the years and what it took to get to a point where deer populations are much better controlled now. His fear is that it will be too late once politicians and anti-hunting politicians like Corzine, realize that something has to be done.

While there never will be as many bears (the population is esti mated at around 3,000 now) as deer in New Jersey, without a hunt the population will keep growing and could double or more. Car ac cidents, crop damage, house break- ins and bear conflicts with man all will increase. Now is the time to bring the bear population under control, not wait as they did with the deer, until the numbers really get out of hand.

There is one major difference between bears and the deer. A deer won’t attack a man, but a bear will. Sooner or later someone will get mauled or killed by a bear if their numbers continue to grow. In short, the governor made the wrong decision and is putting pub lic safety at risk.

Tom Remington