Little Red Rider and the Big Bad Wolf Hunt

Little Red Rider and the Big Bad Wolf Hunt

The Huffington Post

by Brenda Peterson

The wolf hunt that begins this week in Idaho, Wyoming, and Montana is as grim as the Grimm’s fairy tale. Ever since the bloody wolf-delisting rider was slipped into a recent budget bill, this myth is driving wildlife politics. And it’s still the same ending: The wolf must die. The heroic hunter rescues the grandmother and little girl. Everyone lives happily ever after, except, of course, the wild wolf.

In the medieval mindset of Little Red Riding Hood, the fairy tale forest was a looming wilderness — a villain overshadowing the little village. Walking through the woods was dangerous. You never knew who might follow you home, devour and pretend to be your grandmother, and eat you alive.

This fairy tale was a time before humans domesticated nature, made tree farms out of forests and drove entire species, like the wolf, to extinction. This was before Alaskan wolf hunters in airplanes gunned down entire packs of radio-collared wolves. Before we poisoned, trapped, and shot wolves for sport. This was before we understood the science of wolves and their predator-prey balance that actually restores healthy ecosystems.

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