Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

Of Wolves and Politicians

Should Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR) create a wolf-hunting season? That question will be on the statewide ballot this November.


Twice? Yes, voters will decide two separate referendums: Proposal 1 and Proposal 2. And yet, voters may not actually determine with either vote whether there will be a wolf hunt.

What’s going on has less to do with killing wolves than it does with politicians butchering democratic checks to their power.

Until 2012, wolves were a federally protected endangered species. Now some say the estimated 650 wolves in Michigan have become a nuisance.

It has long been legal to shoot wolves threatening livestock or people, so that’s not at issue.

What is at issue? Last year’s legislation, which gave the DNR power to establish a wolf-hunting season. Animal protection activists objected, gathering more than 250,000 signatures to put the law to a statewide vote.

Okay, let the people decide, right?

Wrong. Legislators intent on not permitting citizen control passed a brand new law to have it their way — the people be damned. So tenacious citizens signed more petitions to put this second statute to a referendum.

Hence the two referendums on the ballot.

Legislators still weren’t finished, though. They passed a third bill, this time slapping an unrelated appropriation in it, thus blocking a referendum. That law faces a legal challenge.

This seems a choice between the government regulating wildlife matters with or without any popular check on that power. By voting NO on both Proposals 1 and 2, Michiganders can tell the wannabe dictators in Lansing that their democracy-hunting season is over.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

By: Redactor


  1. Drik says:

    The politicians may have been worried that, were the citizens to get comfortable with shooting wolves, they might go after the politicians next.

  2. Brian Wright says:

    Thanks, Paul, how did you know I was just filling out my absentee ballot in Michigan and had no idea of the background to all this? Changed my vote to No on them both.

    [ ] + one = 5, these are getting beyond the capability of many government school graduates. 🙂

  3. JFB says:

    Popular check of the legislature? Still not good enough.
    I would leave the regulation of wildlife to the landowners on their property (and he State of Michigan on their’s).
    As for the “representatives” running over the desires of some of the people, or regulation by referendum, there are always individual owners and stakeholders who disagree.
    What is the real difference between dictating the actions an individual is allowed to do on or with their property by the legislature or the majority? I see none. Liberty and private property are not championed in either case.

  4. JFB/ While I was still composing in my head you wrote it and nailed it.

    “What is the real difference between dictating the actions an individual is allowed to do on or with their property by the legislature or the majority? I see none. Liberty and private property are not championed in either case.” Well put JFB!

  5. Jerome Alicki says:

    Wolves are not a nuisance or a threat to humans. There is no justification to shoot a wolf other than to have a trophy. Killing another living thing simply for the joy of killing is sick and should be the basis for seeking emotional/mental therapy. It is not a sport, but a disease. I obviously am voting no on the both ballot measures and the Republicans who started this mess – State Senator Meekhof and A.L.E.C. – should know this is not over after the election. I have already made a donation to fund the next fight for wolves and I hope other likeminded folk will do the same.

  6. Paul Jacob says:

    JFB & Lynn — Much if not most of this decision centers on public lands, not private. And as you no doubt know, there is a LOT of public land. On that public land, who should decide?

    But even on private land, if individuals cannot control their own land, cannot convince the “state” to leave then free to decide privately, without the threat of arrest or fines or force of some sort, would you opt for legislators to control it or for the public to have the right or power of referendum to challenge and overturn that public power by popular vote?

    I’m for private property, with the freedom it entails, but on public property, and on private property as long as the use is controlled by the state, it is a blessing for the people to be able to question and overturn those decision of their few representatives.

  7. Paul Jacob says:

    I use the word “representatives” very loosely, above. That term has become a euphemism for “unrepresentative.”

  8. zaagaate says:

    Ciciumvention of the People, Tyranny !

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