Re: Police push back after outrage over killing of fawn, Sept. 14.
Recent incidents involving wildlife in this region show how polarized the response of officialdom and the reaction of the general public to that response has become.
After eliminating extreme opinions, you are left with a serious disconnect between government agencies that see wildlife as a resource to be managed, most often for harvesting purposes, and a growing number of people who see wildlife as sentient creatures for which we have a moral responsibility to treat with compassion.
Had the deer that was shot by the MRC police officer been an adult with two broken legs, putting it down would have been viewed as a humane gesture. But it was a fawn with what appears to have been one broken leg. The appropriate response would have been to transport the animal to a wildlife rehabilitation facility for a professional assessment.
For the police officer to shoot this fully conscious and alert animal while a young child and others trying to help it looked on can only be viewed as callous and insensitive.
Thousands of people have spoken out about this issue, along with recent criticism of the National Capital Commission over what many considered the unnecessary destruction of a lynx in Gatineau Park and calls for more serious legal penalties for an Ottawa man who allegedly tortured and killed raccoons. The vast majority of these letters and comments are reasonable and responsible. They show the need for a better alignment between government practice and public values when it comes to wildlife.
Ottawa-Carleton Wildlife Centre