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Holley, NY Has Gone Nuts

February 13, 2013 | Hunting & Wildlife Management

Friends of Animals Protests "Squirrel Slam" Killing Contest at Holley Fire House, Saturday, Feb 16th 3 pm-6 pm

Contact: Edita Birnkrant, FoA NY Director
cell: 917-940-2725

New York-Friends of Animals is holding a protest outside the Holley Fire House, 7 Thomas Street, from 3 pm-6 pm, on Saturday, Feb. 16, to oppose the town's annual "Squirrel Slam,"-a squirrel-shooting contest for children and adults sponsored by the Holley Fire Department.

squirrel demo sign

Does the NRA run the village of Holley, NY?," asks Edita Birnkrant, NY Director of Friends of Animals. "Their agenda is to push guns into the hands of younger and younger children -- indoctrinating them into a culture of violence, which starts with monstrous killing-contests like "Squirrel Slams" - rewarding sixth-graders with cash prizes for shooting lots of innocent animals."

"Guns, including an AR/22 Semi and other rifles will be raffled at the Fire House as rewards for killing squirrels while dead squirrels are weighed and prizes are distributed," Birnkrant adds. "The NRA is desperate to increase numbers of hunters, since numbers have declined for decades, as a recent NY Times cover story "Selling a New Generation on Guns" details."

New York State Senator Tony Avella held a press conference in Albany on Monday, Feb 11, condemning the "Squirrel Slam." Senator Avella described the killing contest as "insane," and said, "I can't tell you how disgusted I am at this event." The organizers of this event are sending the wrong message and should be ashamed of themselves. I urge them to cancel this mass squirrel-killing contest as soon as possible. What kind of message are we sending to our youth, especially in light of all the increasing gun violence in this country," Avella concluded.

Animal Rights Advocates of Upstate NY, Animal Allies of Western New York, New York residents, and Friends of Animals' members will join the demonstration to raise awareness of those inside and outside the Holley community, FoA reports.

"The national conversation on gun violence should include condemnation of animal-killing contests such as Holley's bloody, mean-spirited "Squirrel Slam," which subverts a civilized culture-brainwashing children to think guns are cool, and that terrorizing animals -- making them dead -- is a fun, rewarded activity," FoA's president Priscilla Feral says. "We're putting our boots on the ground in Holley on Saturday, Feb. 16, to defend the interests of squirrels not to be viewed as shooting targets," Feral adds.


Unfortunately the word in the village is that a vote has been taken and the event will proceed. Disgusting, mindless... too many things in my mind that cannot be printed. Hoping to see as many of you out there to let them know we aren't just messing around.

SQUIRREL SLAM INVOKES OUR BARBARIAN INSTINCT. HOLLEY FIRE DEPARTMENT IS VIOLENT AND DEBAUCHED. The slaughtering of squirrels to fund-raise is disconcerting and provocative. And what is most disturbing are children involved in pulling the trigger killing to fund-raise. The pleasure is in the kill, the thrill and the torture. Furthermore; the catch is the prize, a win for the Holley Fire Department. The act of killing desensitizes and true emotion evolves into cruelty. And when cruelty is engaged then one becomes a slave to society. What happens to the senses when someone experiences the sight, sound, smell, and touch before and after the kill? In the modern world, we are desensitized and lost connection with our senses. And do we really understand the word, "feeling," not emotionalism, not thrills, nor excitement, but the quality of perception, the quality of hearing, listening, and feeling. When was the last time we heard a bird sing and the rustle of a leaf? And how do we feel when we glimpse at the studded-gold-rays of the Sun. Equally important, how do we perceive a squirrel, his dance, his wit, his swiftness, and thick coat and stretched-out tail? And to feel deeply, penetratingly to see the beauty is very difficult for most of us because we have lost the capacity to be truly human. The state of ecstasy and joy cannot be experienced unless we put aside the illusion of pleasure. And during the squirrel-slam watch every thought, feeling, and emotion when you hold the gun and touch the trigger. And look very deep at the dancing squirrels and everything that nature has created. Can you pull the trigger and take a life that you have not designed and created in the utmost beauty? Holley Fire Department would do well to set an example and offer an alternative to fund-raise. I propose to draw landscapes of the squirrel habitat. In addition, write songs about squirrels, sketch squirrels, and sway like a squirrel. And equally important, the engagement not be in the kill but in celebrating life and embrace the squirrel as our own. The Holley Fire Department can set an example of good stewardship and become a friend of animals. The investment of befriending is great because of the insight into sensitivity and that all life has value. This will mitigate future violence and people who are in tune rarely engage in crime.

I hope that everyone has been contacting as many people as possible who can actually stop this event. It is the eleventh hour but maybe there can be a miraculous change of hearts! Can we look into what we can be done to banning such hunting contests and trophy hunting, increasing enviromental literacy and supporting animal welfare and and conservation efforts? Those of good will should be able to dialog respectfully and learn from one another to effect true and beneficial change. We are the stewards of an awesome creation and bear an awesome responsibility. Until then, I PRAY.

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