(Photos -- July 9, 2012, Jamaica Bay Wildlife "Refuge": 1-- USDA WS agents stuffing captured, flightless Canada goose to crate to send for slaughter. 2-- A goose who through the miracle of an early molt, was able to fly and escape the carnage from Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge this past summer.)
Maybe it is me, but it doesn't feel like Christmas this year.
Yes, the trees are up and the glittering lights. Crowds bustle in the streets and stores for last minute gifts.
But, somehow the music seems quelled, the sense of celebration is gone and I am not seeing Canada geese in any appreciable numbers in Central Park.
Last year at this time, there were nearly 100 migratory Canada geese at Central Park's Harlem Mere.
The geese arrived the first week in December and stayed until the last of the ice melted in mid February.
But, they are not at Harlem Mere this year.
There has been one gaggle of geese (comprised of seemingly two families) who come and go at the Mere over the past few weeks. But, I am guessing these to be NYC resident geese due to their seeming familiarity with the environment and curiosity of people.
Perhaps they are survivors of the Jamaica Bay goose roundup conducted this past July?
Although 751 Canada geese were brutally captured from a so-called, "refuge" by USDA "Wildlife Services" and sent to slaughter, there were reportedly a small number of geese who miraculously completed molting early and were able to fly away to safety.
Perhaps this group of about 12 geese bouncing around Central Park now are part of the miracle few who escaped the horrific goose massacres of this past summer.
If that be true, the geese are like the "miracle pigeon" who recently survived the live "pigeon shoot" held every year in Pennsylvania::
Instead of celebrating peace and good will this time of year, it appears many in our culture revel in delivering terror and death to the innocent and defenseless.
Yesterday, an outdoors column from California extolled the "thrill" of the kill of Canada geese:
This seemed a strange piece for publication on the heels of one of the worst gun massacres (towards humans) in US history.
Then again, most people don't make the connection between violence towards animals and violence carried out against humans -- even the small and defenseless among us.
Those currently fighting for "gun control" in this country always make the point that they are not seeking to "take away guns from hunters."
I am all for taking guns away from hunters and am proud to say that.
This is no longer the pioneer days when some people had to shoot to eat.
These days one only need walk to the corner grocery store, restaurant or order over the phone, slaughtered remains of animals.
Currently, hunting is (in the shooters' own words) done for the "fun" and "thrill" of it.
But, we need to question how and why so many in our culture take delight and "thrill" in the wanton terrorization and destruction of the innocent?
Such seems more to smack of a kind of cultural meltdown as exemplified by acceptable sadism and/or other mental/emotional disorder than any "peace or good will."
This Christmas I wonder if I am not seeing the migratory geese in Central Park because most have been taken out by warped "thrill seekers" like the hunter who wrote the above column?
"We will not take guns away from hunters!"
Sign of the times, one might say.
But those times are not representative of any peace or good will.
And they certainly don't symbolize Christmas. -- PCA