Overpopulation v. Willful Stupidity

Mark Walker MWalker at gensym.com
Fri Jan 26 17:21:54 EST 2001

I would argue that the "problem" described here can in fact be related to
too many humans.  First, you wouldn't likely be concerned about or even
notice such hunting behavior if there were fewer people (and hence more
wilderness).  Second, there would likely be fewer hunters involved.  And
third, hunters would be less likely to aggregate in areas that would be
unable to handle their predation.  I would argue that even in the cases of
the American Bison and the Carrier Pigeon, both were doomed in large part
because of population effects.  Stupid population, true.  But too many
stupid people is a function of too many people.
I say habitat loss is directly related to human population.  It is also
related to greed, selfishness, and power mongering.  But since these are
human characteristics, I don't see how one can comfortably suggest that the
world can handle a growing population - especially a growing population that
is greedy, selfish, and power hungry.
I once heard someone say that the whole population of the United States
could comfortably live within the boundaries of Jacksonville, Florida.  I
don't know how true this is - although it would be simple to prove/disprove
based on simple area calculations.  I suppose if this were possible, there
could still be plenty of habitat left for Panthers and other higher order
Mark Walker.
-----Original Message-----
From: Jean-Michel MAES [mailto:jmmaes at ibw.com.ni]
Sent: Friday, January 26, 2001 9:41 AM
To: mbpi at juno.com; LEPS-L at lists.yale.edu
Subject: RE: Overpopulation v. Willful Stupidity
Mass hunting still exists.
In Rio San JUan, Nicaragua, there is a company that promotes duck hunting.
Rich people go there (mostly from US) and shoot ducks. 20 hunters can kill
up to 1,000 ducks in a week. They have no problems with CITES as they did
not export nothing. In this case the problem is not over population, just
crazy way of pleasure of some people.
That's not about collecting and nothing to see with butterflies, sorry. I
will not do it more.
Jean-Michel MAES
AP 527
tel 505-3116586
jmmaes at ibw.com.ni <mailto:jmmaes at ibw.com.ni>
----- Original Message -----
From: < mbpi at juno.com <mailto:mbpi at juno.com> >
To: < LEPS-L at lists.yale.edu <mailto:LEPS-L at lists.yale.edu> >
Sent: Friday, January 26, 2001 6:44 AM
Subject: Overpopulation v. Willful Stupidity
> Keeping things in context, since this IS "supposed" to be a
> butterfly-related listserv...
> In my humble opinion (which I'm sure will be shot full of holes by the
> rabid archivists with their stockpiled artillery of irrefutable
> literature), I don't believe that "overpopulation" is the REAL problem in
> the degredation of adequate habitat and the extirpation/extinction of the
> biodiversity of local and transient populations.  I believe it is the
> result of greed, ignorance, a lack of appreciation, poor planning, and a
> lack of foresight.
> Witness the Passenger Pigeon:  it was exterminated at a time when the US
> was barely populated and the numbers of Passenger Pigeons FAR exceeded
> the number of people on the continent!  The North American Bison almost
> met the same fate...for equally self-indulgent reasons...and by a
> relative "handful" of the population. ( And I won't even go into the
> Peregrine Falcon and the Bald Eagle, for fear of re-opening that can of
> worms!!!!)
> Flash forward to the late 20th century.  We've come a long way in
> "raising our consciousness," but we still adhere to our proscribed mantra
> of "self-indulgence..." even more so than in the past because we "know" a
> lot more and have easy access to that knowledge.  Except NOW, we use that
> knowledge to rationalize our way out of sticky situtations that we DON'T
> want to be "held accountable" for.
> No, I don't think "overpopulation" is the problem:  I think it is just as
> easy for one "collecter" to exterminate a local population, as it was for
> a small nation east of the Mississippi to eradicate the entire Passenger
> Pigeon population.  This is not a slam-damning soliloquy against
> collectors:  I believe there IS a place for RESPONSIBLE collecting for
> research...not for self-gratuitious greed.  I think capitalistic
> "developers" wreak far more havoc with the biodiversity of indemic
> populations than collectors:  and for every "new development" there is a
> city-scape or rural environment left a "ghost town" by the scramble to
> inhabit these newly invested domains.  That's where the "planners" SHOULD
> come into THEIR consciousness of rethinking these abandoned neighborhoods
> to INCREASE the biodiversity rather than maintain the sterilization that
> drove the dissatisfied tennants out to begin with...  Big cities (and big
> corporations) seem to have a vendetta for corraling people into
> hermetically sealed, inhumane environments.  It has nothing to do with
> "overpopulation," it is simply a lack of regard for anything living...
> I could go on and on (like so many others on this listserv), but I'm
> through.
> Go ahead:  throw your stones!!!!
> M.B. Prondzinski
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