'Don't Scapegoat Wildlife'
From Animal Defenders of Westchester (ADOW)

We advocate on all animal protection and exploitation issues, including experimentation, factory farming, rodeos, breeders and traveling animal acts.

'Don't Scapegoat Wildlife'

Letter as published on Lohud.com
August 28, 2017

Unfortunately, some people are fearful of coyotes due to the spread of misinformation and bias. People often hate what is unfamiliar, what they don't know. Even though coyotes and other wildlife have been here for years before we got here many have been displaced by urban sprawl and habitat destruction.

You are more likely to be bitten by a dog than a coyote. Coyotes also love their babies and are an important part of a healthy ecosystem. What has happened to us that we demand wildlife be killed just because we see them, where did that concept come from? It's an amazing quirk of human nature: We move into an area and demand that wildlife which was here before us get out.

It's easy to stir up hatred and fear it's going on all over, just open any newspaper and look at current events. All kinds of wildlife are being scapegoated as objects of hatred but scapegoating of any group, especially those who cannot defend themselves, is unacceptable in an intelligent, compassionate society.

Please join us at the Yonkers Will Library from 7-9 p.m. on Aug. 31 as we discuss successful methods of living peacefully with coyotes and other wildlife, similar to the remarkable program instituted by New York City, known as WildlifeNYC. It reflects the fact that wildlife has a right to be here, teaching New Yorkers about living and co-existing with "urban fauna," our natural neighbors.

Kiley Blackman
Tuckahoe
The writer is founder​ of Animal Defenders of Westchester.

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