Archive for the 'News' Category

CENSORED by The Source Weekly, 2/20/12

The following letter to the editor was submitted to the Source Weekly for two weeks running. The first submission was censored because it made direct reference to US Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) wolf recovery leader, John Stephenson. A second amended letter was submitted, without any mention to Stephenson except one positive suggestion to protect wolves. This too was censored due to the political agenda between the Source Weekly (Eric Flowers, the editor who refers to himself as “The Gatekeeper”) and the USFWS. Where does that leave you, the public? Duped.


WAR ON WOLVES

By Vanessa Schulz, 2/9/12

On January 24, I attended the Deschutes Land Trust presentation on wolf recovery in Oregon. Were I allowed a similar presentation, instead of talking about the myth of “chronic depredation” and “problem wolves,” I would say the following:

There is a war being waged on wolves. When Congress removed wolves in Montana and Idaho from Endangered Species protections in 2011, hunting quotas were set to give illusion of oversight. But when the quotas are not reached, the season is simply extended. When the quotas are still not reached—because wolves do not in fact exist in the numbers claimed by the loud, anti-wolf faction dominating the news—then direct killing is ordered by air and ground attacks using helicopter gunships and trappers. Get ready for the next step in the paramilitary assault: Pilotless drone aircraft—used by the CIA and the Air Force to target alleged terrorists—to kill “enemy” wolves.

Idaho’s stated goal is reducing 750 wolves to less than 150—the 15-breeding-pair threshold where the federal government could consider restoring a moratorium. In Montana, hunters will be allowed to kill 40% of the state’s estimated 550 wolves. In Wyoming, 100 to 150 wolves near Yellowstone will be spared (100,000 people visit annually specifically to see wolves, generating over $35 million per year) while in the remaining 80% of the state, wolves are considered vermin and can be killed year-round. Roughly 60% of Wyoming’s 350 wolves will be targeted. With the propaganda machine already in full swing, the same atrocities could occur in Oregon.

One of the most egregious assumptions that goes unquestioned is that trapping is an acceptable method of capture (not to mention the unquestioned assumption that wolves need to be captured/collared at all). If wolves don’t chew off their legs in a frenzied panic to escape, then it is because these traps have been modified with a rod to keep the animal’s head in place, or steel teeth to prevent the animal from sawing off it’s own leg. Dislocated limbs, compound fractures, damaged teeth, impact on non-target species, psychic trauma, accidental deaths etc. are rarely mentioned. Traps are the most inhumane devices ever invented and banned in 80 countries. But in America, wolf trapping just became legal as a “sport” citizens can enjoy, including strangling wolves with wire nooses.

Rarely mentioned are the ethics of killing an animal so closely knit as a family—mother, father, brothers, sisters, uncles, aunts, cousins caring for children and grandchildren. Few people consider what it must feel like to be a wolf blown out of a grove of trees with cracker shells, chased mile after mile by a helicopter as the gunman takes aim, shot, drugged, ear-tagged; waking up covered in the stench of man, a massive weight around her neck, alone in foreign territory, coming to the realization that her family are all gone. And we don’t mention the emotion for fear of appearing maudlin!

The extraordinary benefits to the environment—from trees to beavers to birds and insects—of returning wolves as keystone predators is too often overlooked in favor of fear mongering with catch phrases like “chronic depredation” and “problem wolves.” The cost of a cow is between $1000 and $1,500. The cost of collaring and/or killing a wolf is the same price (to tax payers of course) and these animals are captured multiple times if they don’t die in the process from drug overdoses, misplaced darts, hemorrhaging etc. What is the value of a wolf’s life? Apparently much less than a sacred cow.

The depredation scare is a myth to facilitate the war. A 2010 Department of Agriculture report shows that less than one quarter of one percent (0.23%) of the American cattle inventory is lost to native carnivores. This occurs in the following order: Coyotes, dogs, cougars, bobcats, lynx, “other,” vultures, wolves, bears. The real killers of cattle are illness, extreme weather and bad animal husbandry. Welfare ranchers would do far better yelling about climate change instead of using wolves as scapegoats for subsidies and tax breaks.

Anyone with an ounce of logic should be able to see that wildlife “management” is a self-perpetuating industry of wolf control: When you break up packs through relocation and/or killing, you’re left with unstable pack structure, immature wolves who have not yet learned to hunt, lone wolves who cannot take down wild game and are forced to go for the easiest prey available (cows and sheep). Then you as a federal agent can go on another taxpayer-funded hunting spree. It’s hard to make a man understand something when his income depends on him not understanding it, but it’s high time the public comprehend this and make a stand for wolves (80% of the public voted to bring them back).

Cattle pollute, cause devastating erosion, spread disease and are the reason Wildlife “Services”—the agency to which USFWS contracts out to keep it’s name clean—kills more than four million animals every year, including birds, costing in excess of a million taxpayer dollars annually. While it has you focused on the Super Bowl, this murderous culture is killing the planet at a rate of 200 species a day, driven extinct by an almost entirely unquestioned human supremacism.

Another myth: People need to be protected from wolves. Consider the ratio of deaths: A million and a few hundred thousand dead wolves… to two people. If you see a wolf and notify USFWS, you might as well consider it a death sentence.

To Oregon’s wolf recovery leader, John Stephenson: Your indoctrination does not bode well for wolves. With all due respect, you have an extraordinary opportunity to do things differently. Show Idaho, Wyoming and Montana that a humane policy is possible and let your powerful position as a wolf recovery leader in Oregon live up to it’s title by allowing wolves to truly recover under your protection. This could be your legacy and we will stand behind you.

Vanessa Schulz

Learn more about the documentary, Cost of Freedom, directed by Vanessa Schulz

Lost Dogs – Year End Update

As 2010 comes to a close, I reflect on a year of triumphs and setbacks to imagine the best way forward.

Success was the strengthening of the 21st Paradigm production team. I especially thank Anthony Tanaka for his loyalty, persistence and dedication to the project. For Tonito, Felipa, Lilly and Emilia, the mutts who escaped life on the streets in Chile and are now blissfully happy in California and Oregon, for them the year could not have been better! Thank you to Gabriela Jarpa for staying true to the dogs of Rinconada.

Two massive earthquakes devastated parts of Chile, causing canine distemper outbreaks and worsening the already existing calamities of starvation and homelessness. Within days, television media was drugging the global public with other mundane news, while the struggle between life and death continued on the ground, unabated. So too, the struggle for life in US shelters. Another 3 million or more dogs were killed unnecessarily in “shelters,” including the 2-year old war hero who survived the war in Afghanistan and saved fifty soldiers’ lives, only to be killed by mistake within two days of entering the shelter system in Arizona.

As I look back on the year’s progress in terms of finishing the film, I am dismayed at how much time was taken up in the effort to generate funds for production costs. Grant writing, personal appeals, public fundraisers, gallery exhibits, online outreach… The efforts of this small band of volunteers was enormous, and still we operate on a shoe-string budget. It might be character-building, but the time lost is heartbreaking. Meanwhile the southern-most animal shelter in Chile closed it’s doors for lack of adequate funds; poisoning, shooting, stabbing and clubbing of street dogs increased dramatically in major cities, while animal activists continue their struggle to deter the Chilean government from enacting laws that would cause similar deaths for some 2.5 million stray dogs. This, when the feasible solution is at our fingertips – Spay and Neuter. All it takes is education and the will to foster a humane society.

As I mourn the recent loss of my beloved companion of ten years, Digby, I am struck by the immense honor of having a dog as teacher. It makes me that much more grateful for Fumarola, my Chilean rescue who brings me endless amounts of joy.

I take this opportunity to thank all our supporters and volunteers, and ensure that we will strive for a 2011 completion date for the film.

ANYONE WISHING TO PARTICIPATE, FRIDAY DECEMBER 31 IS THE LAST DAY TO DONATE AND RECEIVE A 2010 TAX DEDUCTION.
Click HERE to donate online.

I wish for better times for the animals of our world, for they too deserve a peaceful place.

Vanessa Schulz
Director

Massacre of Dogs televised on Meganoticias – English transcription

TV broadcast by MegaNoticias – November 18, 2010

(Transcribed by Carol Linacre, production assistant for Lost Dogs)

A massive and cruel killing of stray dogs was recorded in Penaflor. Police are investigating the incident and suspect that neighbors of the commune had acted in revenge due the pack that killed two women in that district last week.
This is our report today:
Reporter: “This is the bleak picture captured by Meganoticias at Mallarauco hills in Penaflor. A few days ago, about 300 stray dogs roamed around, now several of them lay dead and many disappeared.
Last week a mother and daughter were killed, attacked by a pack of 9 dogs, owned by a neighbor, who had gathered them from this sector where it is customary to throw these animals. Since that day, the dogs of this place were in danger.
Hector and Agustin, visited and fed these dogs weekly, but on Tuesday, they encountered this cruel slaughter. Everything seems to indicate they were poisoned. The few who survived, now distrust any human who wants to help.”
Hector Negrete: “… this is a totally abnormal situation, on one hand involves animal abuse, and on the other, the spread and dispersion of toxic substances into the environment.”
Agustin Romero: “… there was a very spoiled dog of mine. I brought food and things to disinfect him, and to see him there, laying at the edge of the road … I think it is not the way to address these problems. We have to admit it is a problem, but I think it’s not the way.”
Reporter: “These are among the few survivors of the Mallarauco massacre in Penaflor. Now we’re going to the City Hall, to request more information of what, unfortunately, occurred here.”

Mayor: “I believe in God, and would not be able to do such a thing.”
Reporter: “Do you rule out any participation of the municipality?”
Mayor: “I rule out totally, because, I insist, is not my style.”
Reporter: “Along with the Mayor, we returned to Mallarauco hills. The sad scenario, coupled with the odor generated by the decomposition of dead dogs, dismayed the people present.”
Mayor: “I will take all necessary steps, first, get all these dogs that are dead and buried them, because the smell is intense. Second, I’ll take other dogs, several still roam around, and will bring them to a kennel that I’m going to build in the meantime, while the superior authorities resolve what are we going to do with animals.”
Reporter: “Following the complaint of Meganoticias, police arrived quickly, along with the PDI (PDI is the civil police in Chile) and Environmental Health staff to investigate the killing. Big would be their surprise when examining the animals, many had bruises, cuts, and even gunshot wounds.”
Mesmud Adi, Veterinary Medical Officer for Penaflor Environmental Hygiene department: “We found two with multiple injuries, two with stab wounds and another with severe head trauma, resulting from a blunt object. There are three that by the time of death, I estimate 3-4 days, are in very bad condition.”
Reporter: “Is there human action behind the death of these dogs?”
Mesmud Adi: “Obviously.”

Reporter: “Alberto Saavedra is also shocked by what happened, despite his wife and daughter died attacked by dogs like these, advocates for animals, believes that people in the commune may be behind the killing.”
Alberto Saavedra: “I cannot cheer or anything, but I think it is forming a revenge theme against animals, resulting from what happened, two human beings who have died, leaving a trail of uncertainty, doubt …”
Reporter: “These are the consequences of the lack of a law of responsible pet ownership, a legal loop that has unfortunately left a trail of human and animal deaths in the commune of Penaflor.”

45 Dogs Poisoned in Peñaflor, November 18, 2010

45 dogs were brutally poisoned last night in response to the tragic deaths of two women who were attacked by seven owned dogs in Peñaflor, Chile on November 8.

Meat laced with Strychnine is the cheapest and most common method used. It is also the cruelest, leaving animals to die slow, painful deaths from organ failure and ultimate asphyxiation. Their grimaced expressions upon death are testament to the agony that lasts for hours and even days.

This heartless action and the destruction of the dogs’ rudimentary shelters are thought to be the covert work of the local municipality. The mayor of Peñaflor, Manuel Fuentes, denied any knowledge of the poisonings, then had his communications manager falsely report that only seven dogs were dead and that legal action would be brought against those responsible.

WHAT YOU CAN DO!!!

A public demonstration called “Do not believe Manuel Fuentes” is planned in Penaflor on Saturday, November 20 at 16h00 – http://www.prensanimalista.cl/web/2010/11/18/decenas-de-perros-envenados-aparecen-en-penaflor/

Isolated poisonings are on the increase throughout Santiago. If you are in Chile, please stay tuned in to demonstrations through http://www.chileanimal.org/ and by signing up with Gabriela Jarpa on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/gaviota.jarpa

YOU CAN HELP WHEREVER YOU ARE:

1. Support 21st Paradigm and help us complete the film, Lost Dogs, which will bring this message in visual form to the world:
http://www.lostdogsfilm.org/donate/

2. Support Chile Animal – http://www.chileanimal.org/
(Contact: Paola Dragnic). Donations help them print educational materials and hire youth in Santiago to use social media (Facebook, Twitter and others) to inundate the airwaves with information that points to solutions, stepping away from inhumane, covert action.

3. We urge you to locate Chilean Consulate emails (US listed below) and flood them with letters – short, polite correspondence addressing the following points:

ATTENTION: Ministry of the Interior, Senate and House of Representatives:

We are contacting you in response to the recent mass killings of dogs in Chile and demand that humane action be taken.

• The solution is for each community to have adequate funds for sterilization, vaccinations and assistance to locate homes for stray dogs/cats. Mass killing is not the solution.
• Many of the dogs killed were already sterilized and present no threat or disturbance to people. On the contrary, they are bonded to and loved by many people who feel great loss when they are unnecessarily killed.
• Many of the dogs poisoned are people’s pets. There is no discrimination.
• Poisoning, beating, shooting, drowning and gassing animals is NOT euthanasia. Euthanasia is defined as “mercy killing.” This is called MURDER. We demand this be stopped, that the perpetrators be brought to justice, and that the government be honest with the people it is meant to serve.
• The gruesome, violent deaths experienced by the dogs sends a message to the Chilean people and the world that Chilean authorities condone this level of extreme violence. This is not in line with an emerging, civilized country wishing to establish itself in the international community.

YOU CAN SIGN THE PETITION HERE:
http://www.change.org/petitions/view/stop_the_mass_eradication_of_homeless_dogs_in_chile

CONTACTS:

The Chilean Embassy web site is: http://www.chile-usa.org/ which contains the Consular Offices of:

Consulate General San Francisco – gsfchile@sbcglobal.net
Consulate General Los Angeles – cgchilela@yahoo.com
Consulate General New York – consulgeneral@chileny.com
recepcion@chileny.com
Consulate General in Miami – cgchile.miami@minrel.gov.cl
Consulate General in Chicago – anciller@cgchicago.com; mailto:informaciones@cgchicago.com; secreconsul@cgchicago.com
Consulate General in Houston – conchihous@aol.com
Consulate in Washington D.C. – consulado@embassyofchile.org
Consulate in Philadelphia – chancellor@chileconsulphila.org; cnfilaus@infionline.net; economic@chileconsulphila.org
Consulate in Puerto Rico – cgpricpr@coqui.net
Consulate in Boston – conchile.org@comcast.net
Consulate in Honolulu – vernoy@aloha.net
Consulate in Las Vegas – consulchile@hotmail.com ; vegas@consul.cc

Please visit: http://www.chile-usa.org/consular.htm for the list of the other honorary consulates.

21st Paradigm in the throes of a set-back, thanks to the AKC

21st Paradigm in the throes of a set-back:

On December 5, 21st Paradigm was scheduled to hold a benefit in Los Angeles to raise production funds for the documentary, Lost Dogs, the purpose of which is to raise awareness of the plight of millions of homeless dogs. The film focuses specifically on the street dogs of Chile and strays in the US shelter system.

The benefit was to be held at the Westin Long Beach Hotel and with over one hundred guests already confirmed, the Westin is canceling our reservation because of the American Kennel Club’s National Championships held over the same weekend.

AKC has the clout to shut us down. When breeding purebred dogs drives profit motive, an alternative message about rescuing homeless dogs is to be censored, and that is exactly what the AKC is doing.

21st Paradigm is asking for someone in the LA or Long Beach area to offer a space for a fundraiser for Lost Dogs (all additional arrangements will be handled by the 21st Paradigm staff). The filmmaker, Vanessa Schulz, will be in attendance to give a presentation and show a preview of the film in production.

To partner with 21st Paradigm, please contact Anthony at anthony@lostdogsfilm.org.

Lost Dogs – August Update

Dear Friends of Lost Dogs,

Much is underway at 21st Paradigm!

Upcoming Campaign:
I am currently filming a campaign aimed at controlling the stray dogs in Galapagos from July 31-August 12 (with no email during that time, only cameras).
Read more here!.

Lost Dogs Outreach Objectives:
Our Outreach campaign is being clarified and will be enacted as soon as funds are available and the film is complete.
Enjoy the photographs and stories at http://www.lostdogsfilm.org/outreach.

New Web Site:
Anthony Tanaka (http://www.anthonytanaka.com) is working on revamping the 21st Paradigm web site and it’s looking amazing… Stay tuned!

Crew Expansion:
The incredibly accomplished and talented editor, Eric Schusterman, has joined the 21st Paradigm team and will begin editing Lost Dogs in September. This is a breakthrough for the project.
Read more about Eric here (http://www.21paradigm.com/about.php).

Sponsorship:
Lavabelles Vacation Rentals is proudly sponsoring the second edit suite in one of their fabulous bungalows in Bend’s historic district. Thank you Cara!
(http://www.lavabelles.com).

Upcoming Event:
Lost Dogs will be hosting a fundraiser in Los Angeles on December 5, 2010.
If you would like to volunteer, donate services, or an item to the silent auction, please contact me at vschulz@gmail.com or Anthony at anthony@lostdogsfilm.org.

Lost Dogs, Progress:
We are in need of financial backing to complete post-production and capture more footage in order to include a broader perspective of the stray dog crisis. This truly is a global issue.
Please continue to spread the word, and please consider making a donation at http://www.lostdogsfilm.org/donate.

In closing, here is Fumarola chillin’ with Digby and Teddy…

Thank you all for your continued support!

For the dogs,

Vanessa

Lost Dogs in Galapagos

21st Paradigm is working together with Animal Balance to document the NGO’s ongoing campaigns aimed at minimizing the impact of stray dogs on the native wildlife of the Galapagos Islands. The shoot begins July 31, to August 10.

Galapagos are a series of islands ruled by Ecuador, declared a world heritage sight and renowned for their biodiversity and unique species. But those species have never before been hunted to the degree they are now, by people, cats and dogs. Animal Balance focuses primarily on sterilization and education to affect the problem, which it does very successfully.

To support the filming of this campaign and it’s connection to the LOST DOGS documentary, please visit 21st Paradigm.