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The Buffalo War
talkback


presented by ITVS


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12/17/2007
Matthew Testa

I was pleased to learn recently that the Munns' property at Horse Butte has been purchased by new owners who are interested in preserving the land there and allowing bison to graze unmolested. These new landowners were able to outbid other buyers who were intent on developing the property Instead, there will be a few new homesites, but the owners are working to put a conservation easement on the land so that most of it is protected against development. It's great news for the Butte and the bison there, though I am told the Montana DOL intends to continue its bison management practices at Horse Butte, even with the cattle gone. If this is true, it would seem to again call into question the DOL's motives, which are supposedly to protect Montana cattle. I'm sure it wasn't easy for the Munns family to let their place go, but the good news is they got the best possible price for their land and it will stay pretty much as is. Just goes to show how much influence private property owners and can have when they decide to put preservation ahead of profit.



11/16/2007

I personally beleive that the buffalo are beautiful creatures that deserve respect, grazing and breeding grounds. BUT, I also think that American farmers deserve a place to graze their cattle as well. The American cattle farmers have the same problems that Native Americans had in earlier times. They are being forced off and out of their lands. I don't think that it's very fair to blame the cattlemen on the problems with the buffalo population. The over population of the United States is forcing cattlemen off of their farmland and they are forced to find more and more rural country to farm on. I do not beleive that the bison should be slaughtered, I think that they should have a designated grazing area. But American cattle farmers deserve land to.



11/16/2007

I personally beleive that the buffalo are beautiful creatures that deserve respect, grazing and breeding grounds. BUT, I also think that American farmers deserve a place to graze their cattle as well. The American cattle farmers have the same problems that Native Americans had in earlier times. They are being forced off and out of their lands. I don't think that it's very fair to blame the cattlemen on the problems with the buffalo population. The over population of the United States is forcing cattlemen off of their farmland and they are forced to find more and more rural country to farm on. I do not beleive that the bison should be slaughtered, I think that they should have a designated grazing area. But American cattle farmers deserve land to.



1/8/07
Richard Red Hawk

This war has ripped my heart out. I have written the Governor of Montana 4 times and have gotten no reply. I believe a solution here is for the Federal Government to take the ranches bordering Yellowstone through Eminent Domain and pay these ranchers to pack their bags and head back across the big waters where their ancestors came from. When their ancestors came here the land was clean and healthy. The waters were clean and healthy. The air was clean and healthy. The Native Peoples were clean and healthy. These whites brought all the pollution and diseases that almost wiped out the Native Peoples. Their filthy unhealthy habits even today threaten all life on this Sacred Mother Earth. If the Buffalo were a sickly animal why were there so many millions of them when whitey came to this land? It is the whites and his domestic slab sided locusts (cattle and sheep)that brought all of these diseases here ,not the Buffalo. We have Mad Cow Disease now because they feed the dead carcasses of farm animals to cattle .

They feed their cattle antibiotics and hormones so they grow faster . They put so much fat on the beef it is like a ticking bomb for the health of the people stupid enough to eat it. Today I read about the cattle in Colorado dying from the heavy snows. These puny weak animals are worthless. The Buffalo was born to live in this land and in the blizzard, he faces the blizzard with strength. It is not just the Buffalo that these whites want killed, it is Wolves, Bears Coyotes and on and on and on. These ranchers can live with nothing but their cattle and their bank accounts. Have you ever watched the seal clubbing in Canada? Same story, different place. I believe there is no peace in the white race. They must control everything, even the Sacred Mother Earth. But lets look at what is happening. The kids of today cannot think. They fail in the schools because of the worthless foods produced on Corp. Farms. Look at the new diseases that are showing up. I could go on and on here but will not. The solution here for t he Buffalo is THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TAKE THESE RANCHES THREW EMINENT DOMAIN AND LET THE BUFFALO HAVE THE LAND SURROUNDING YELLOWSTONE. KEEP ALL CATTLE AND SHEEP OUT. IF THE BUFFALO INCREASE TO MUCH FOR THE LAND LET THE INDIAN TRIBES HAVE THE EXCESS FOR THEIR LANDS. AHO.



10/3/06
Edward Joseph (two feathers) Anderson

I would just like to say that the second white calf was Recently born to our native people. to show that our creator is establishing a change. threw the buffilo...and the last letter I sent to you I spelt buffalo



9/28/06
Alana

I agree with the 2 people underneith me. Because i think we should not have to kill these animals. These animals were important to a culture that were here before us. We have no right to kill them just becuase we like to eat them or for the fun of killing animals(hunting). Thats just not right.



9/28/06

Just like any other living creature on this planet, i believe buffalo are a very important part of American culture and should not be sluaghtered for any reason unless completely necessary. We should respect Native Americans and their spiritual beliefs towards the buffalo and do whatever we can to protect the buffalo.



9/28/06
Bonnie

I agree with the person right below me that the buffalo dont deserve to be slaughtered and it is wrong for people to think that killing all those buffalo is beneficial, because they should respect the buffalo's right to live and they should know that buffalo are a huge part of our culture and should be saved not murdered.



9/28/06

My opinion on this is kind of mixed because right now I'm taking a neutral stand in this. I agree with all the views I agree with the Indians because that is they're culture and that was they're way of life and their belief. I agree with the enviromentalist's because they have a right to show the world what people due to animals and they have a right to speak they're mind. I agree with the cattle herders because they have to earn a living and they have to make sure that the food and milk did not come from a diseased buffalo. I can't really say much except that people should read it all and look at the different views and needs that they are trying to accomodate.



9/27/06

I agree with most of the people here because in the end. I especially agree with Mark C. It's just slaughter and destruction of a race that has been here since pretty much the beginning of the earth. My opinion on this matter is that you can use whatever excuse that you want in the end it's just slaughter and murder. All life on Earth deserves to live once it's born no matter the reason. You destroy something mostly it's for fun not for anything necessary.



9/27/06

The Department of Livestock is not purposely trying to eliminate the population of wild buffalo. They are just trying to save their multi million dollar economy of the cattle industry. With the wild buffalo comes the diseases that could kill off a whole lot more cattle which would then cause more problems. The DOL is not disregarding the Native Americans or their culture.



8/14/06
ann

the bison and a few of us 'humans' need your help out there. The only cattle ranch on the Horse Butte Peninsula has been SOLD. There will be more houses, which is sad to see, but the upside is NO livestock on the peninsula. We need everyone to Write to our Gov. Brian Schweitzer; governor@mt.gov or call him at 406-444-3111 and ask him to designate the Horse Butte Peninsula as a Buffalo 'Safe Zone' Not to be harrassed by any govt. agencies or hunters. If you need more information on this please check out the buffalo field campaign website at www.buffalofieldcampaign.org. the bison will thank you and so will I.



8/8/06
mark c.

I think the slaughter of bison shows not only a disregard for native culture but a total lack of respect towards one of Gods creatures. Who gave the state of Montana and the DOL the right to play God and slaughter hundreds of Bison without knowing if they're really infected or not! When people believe they have absolute knowledge, with no test in reality , this is how they behave. This is what men do when they aspire to the knowledge of gods. What's going to solve this thing --- The total eradication of the last wild herd! There needs to be solutions fast, and one of them is to spread the last herd all over the U.S. to environmental responsible people, concentrate on bringing the population up, and not use the last wild herd for mass consumption. It's obvious Montana doesn't like the Bison, or give a damn what the Indians think. Then again history will tell us our government didn't either. We need to take the power into our own hands cause that's the only way things will get done. But then again what's it going to take---- a revolution! It's going to take money, Influence, and a whole lot of attorney's to get anything done about this issue. It's also going to take revolutionary ideas and actions to save this country's environment and the Bison. There needs to be more proof on this infection issue, and science needs to lead the way towards resolution.



7/17/06
susan

The baffalo war.....
a tearing journey.coincidemtally,i'm doing a report on American Tribes,and my subtitle is Holy Cow,Bison
i suppose that the deep i getting to know about the carnage of all those innocent and silent creatures,the perishing cold i felt deep inside my heart.
i'm not a Native American, but why whould the cries of the calves overwhilmed me as i was gathering the information about the slaughter.i questionsed that did all those bisons hunters paused for a moment before they shot guns?did they see that there's a baby calf running right next to her bulky,gasping mom?
also,refer to the 1st question
the efforts of the enviromental activists are effecitive,at least those native American's action touched,and inspired ME,a 13 yrs.old teenage so so so deeply.I belive that if they do what is right,and what is for the sake of this planet,everyone of the human beings in this world will feel the same way as i did.As i know, not many high school students know alot about this web
site,nor the slaughter of the buffalo.Our youths are the onces that really needs to thinking about take an action in the future.



5/16/06
Edward Joseph Two Feathers Anderson

In regaurds to bullalo SALUGHTER I think that WE were done wrong. The Government has made not one effort to make things right for what they did to Our Land, Our People, and Our Bullalo. They took and took till their was no more to take, and never replaced any of it. It hurts my heart that our Native culture was abused so much. Its like they are trying to destory something they have no idea what we live for and our beliefs of our Native way.



5/1/06

My grandfather homesteaded the acerage next to the Munns ranch, I did my entire childhood growing up on that ranch helping fix fence check cows, move them when needed, branding in fall. There was never a problem till the 'white man' stuck thier noses in. All the Munns family did was graze cattle and a few horses. The allotments were taken away very stupidly thanks to acting before researching. It is common knowledge the bison and cattle on the Horse Butte never intermingled and never will unless forced to do so by "white men". Now the Ranch is for sale and will likely be developed for more uncaring people to purchase because it was at one time "pristine". But they want it to be just like thier nice little houses and yards that they left to come here. No grazing by bison or cattle on the butte has now made it a fire danger as well as getting overrun with noxious weeds.



3/22/06
Karolalyce

Again Government and everyone else involved in someone elses issues. this was the land of the indian before europeans came here and took what they claim to have discovered and until they wipe everything off the world but them they won't be satisfied.



1/19/06
laurie dailey

I am native cherokee. with all do respect, this all saddens me. to some, this is seen as a control of disease. but, just as all of the ranchers decided that our native wolf was a bother, now they have decided to pick on something new, the buffalo. they are simply eating. how is that harming anyone? just like the wolves, just feeding their family. anyone with any understanding knows the wolf only preys on the sick and eldery. they do not waste. bison are just as friendly and just as precious. everything that is natural should be allowed to go it's course. but, since the beginning, i feel it's just another way of the government trying to control our people. so very sad. but nothing has changed.



12/20/05
Roann

I think the activists have been forced to take dramatic actions because no one seems to want to listen to common sense and logic.They are simply making every last desperate effort to save every bison possible.I think the federal lands belong to all the native and wild animals that live there- THIS DOES NOT INCLUDE CATTLE. Because so much of Montana consists of ranching and the ranchers vote, the politicians are going to do what the vast majority of their voters want-even if it terribly wrong. Isn't that , after all the bottom line of politics? I think the ranchers should be working around the bison's natural schedule and if they are afraid the bison's birthing fluids will leave brucellosis in the grazing fields,{ WHICH I MIGHT ADD, IS FEDERAL LAND- ITS NOT THE RANCEHRS PRIVATE PROPERTY} then the ranchers should be the ones to wait the 45 days to insure the safety of the cattle. I would also like to know why the male bison are included in this hunt when its the birthing fluid from the female that carry the disease. I think the slaughter of the buffalo shows a disregard for wildlife and insults the intelligence of the people of Montana. The government is always quick to try to solve a problem that involves wild animals by elimating them so they don't have to deal with them anymore. They don't seem to care that they are only putting a quick fix band-aid on the problem and only causing much larger ones for the future. Where exactly are the bison suppose to go when the park does not supple enough grazing land for them???? I was born and raised in Eastern Montana, so I am well aware of the issues and concerns of the ranchers. I am ashamed to say that the ignorance of these people are costing precious lives of the bison. Ranchers should be the last ones to have the say about the bison and ranchers should also be the first ones to understand how nature and man MUST work together -it saddens me that they are so blind.



4/4/05
Gentlepaw
Animals do not have any problem living with man. It is man who cannot and will not live with the animals.

I don't discount the ranchers concerns or hate them.

Although this has been said many times before, the buffalo along with the Native American lived on this land long before the rancher.

The land was taken, by force and/or coercion, the Great Herds deliberately slaughtered, in order to push the Native out of and away from their own land.

These are old words and have been said many times.

The saddest thing of all is perhaps,that now the land has been taken, in some cases, the wildlife which has always existed there is regarded as a pest, and trapped killed and poisoned. That man is so arrogant he believes he has dominion over all other life.The Native knows this to be untrue.

The answer should lie in compromise, and some ranchers do indeed seek to find ways in which nature the wild and domestic cattle can coexist peacefully along side one another.

Sometimes it seems to me, it is the human who is the pest, spreading over the land, and doing more harm than any of the creatures ever could.

All life is sacred, not just human. All life deserves respect.

We are all connected and so should we all look out out for one another.......



2/28/05
Ruth
The Buffalo were the only animals that could be slaughtered to use the fur for clothing and were the only animals to be used for meat. I think now the Buffalo which are still around should be preserved.



12/15/04
shawneedaughter
Will there ever be an understanding of harmony? Those of our Ancestors here first had the same aspirations for us as the whites had for their 'Manifest Destiny. The difference? We Indians live with Respect for ALL of Creator's miracles. My Ancestors chose to live in Harmony with the land and the winged and 4 legged creatures and those that swim and fly....they chose to CONSERVE the land for future generations.

With profound Respect for my Ancestors and for the Brother and Sister Buffalo, I humbly request that they be allowed to live.

As the closing quotes said 80% of the buffalo killed were brucillosis FREE....sad that the Buffalo is not FREE!

Great Spirit resides in those of us who's Hearts and Blood are Indian. We know Truth and the Great Mystery lives in us. :)

Thank you



9/20/04
Matthew Testa
Producer/Director/Cinematographer of THE BUFFALO WAR

My goal in including the Munns in this film was to show a small, sympathetic ranching family that is caught in the crossfire of the battle over bison. It was never my intention to villify the Munns or pin the bison slaughter on them and it disappoints me to see the film interpreted in that way. On the contrary, I think the state and federal agencies have unfairly used the ranches outside of Yellowstone as pawns to justify bison policy. It is the Montana DOL, in collusion with federal agencies, that is responsible for bison regulation and bison mortality, not the Munns family.

Though I agree that wildlife should take precedence over cattle on public lands in every case, I am not necessarily an outright opponent of public lands grazing (nor am I a vegetarian!). More importantly, I sought to demonstrate that bison and cattle were sharing public lands pretty successfully and without disease transmission before (as they still do in Jackson Hole). It seemed to me that the Munns could be allowed to graze outside the park as long as their permit continued to separate their cattle from the bison for 45 days. Under this scenario, disease transmission was all but impossible. Unfortunately, all the brucellosis hysteria has led the Munns to lose their grazing permit entirely. It's ironic and sad to me that a bison management policy intended to help ranchers has only hurt them and given their industry a bad name.

And what has come of revoking the Munns' permit? One would think that taking the Munns' cattle off of Horse Butte would have opened the land to bison there. However, bison are still trapped and tested on the butte, just as before (266 were killed last season). Under this scenario, everyone loses - the bison and their advocates, and the Munns and their industry.



7/12/04
Brian Nelson
The one thing that nobody talks about is what the anamials eat unlike you they survive on what the land provides. When the land has more animals then it can suport something has to give. In the case of unlimitted buffalo its the smaller grazing animals that are starved first,what has happendin the Yellow Stone area is the destruction of the Moose,Deer,Elk and others for the buffalo. As for removing the ranchers from public lands you must be willing to dig into your own pockets to replace the millions of dollars that the ranchers pay to use these lands. The ranchers also provide fire supression and many other benefits to the land they use.



6/18/04
Jill
There is a reason that Suzie only sees "hate the rancher" posts on this forum. Their behavior encourages such sentiment. In reality, many of these ranchers have been using and abusing public land for decades. Public land does not belong to these private ranchers. It belongs to the American people. There are 3 million cattle and sheep roaming land that belongs to all of us. These domestic livestock have caused more destruction to the American west than any of our wildlife would have done. Ranchers are responsible for having eradicated wolves from the American west. They have slaughtered countless numbers of coyotes and mountain lions. They have been at war with our 40,000 wild horses for years, and have charged them with stealing forage from the mouths of their livestock. Now, compare 3 million cattle and sheep to 200,000 bison who, by the way, are native to these lands. If the American public decides it wants bison to roam THEIR land - and not sheep and cattle - the public should be entitled to have bison roam their land. Suzie claims that beef does not just magically appear on our grocers' shelves. She's right - but it doesn't come from these ranchers either. Most of the beef we consume comes from crowded factory farms - not free-range cattle. She says that the bison are "extremely protected". If that were true, their numbers would not be less than 1% of what they were in the 1800's. She states that our bison "need boundaries". Why? They are wild animals! By definition, this suggests "no boundaries" - especially on our PUBLIC lands. Those who sympathize with the Munns, remember one thing - the Munns CHOSE to live in the American west. Nobody forced them to live there. As human beings, they may live wherever they choose. The bison, on the other hand, do not have that choice. They have lived there for millions of years. They cannot just pick up and move out. They DO belong there - it has been their only home for millions of years. Let's also not forget that this "war" against the bison is based on unsupported claims of transmission of brucellosis from bison to cattle. These cattle reside on public land just outside Yellowstone Nat'l Park - and there are only about 200 of them (to put it in perspective). Lastly, Suzie has issued a challenge, "...next you will be telling me that grizzly bears need the same thing...". You're right, Suzie. We are telling you that, too.



6/9/04
Barbara Y. Lewis lewis.barbaray@EPA.Gov
This is abit off from your line of questions, but my question(s) are, if you can help: (a) during the 1800's ... the Indian Wars between the Buffalo Soldiers(an African American fighting troop) and the Indians, the Indians initially gave the fighting troop the name (Buffalo Soldiers), because of their indurance to move forward keep fighting like the buffalo. ..I know there are at least 10 different kinds of Buffaloes, what species of Buffaloes where roaming the plains at that time....thanks for your help.



4/22/04
Suzie
I'm seeing only the "hate the rancher" emails on this site. I'm sorry there is not equality in how this is handled but it goes to show how major corporations and public opinions can be swayed to portray what THEY feel to be portrayed. This show, not only is prejudiced against the "Munns" ranchers, it seems to be run by vegetarians as well...how many of you out there that are so degrading of that family have ever eaten a piece of beef? Do you think it grows magically on some grocery store shelf? It does not. It is hard work and determination that brings that meat to your stores. The buffalo are an extremely protected for certain, majestic animals. but even those majestic animals need boundaries....If they were trampling your lawns and fences and destroying what you worked hard for I am sure you would want to see something done about it. Yes go ahead and tell me you would turn your yards over to them, and keep your children indoors at all times so they could roam as "they should" so they could have their land and do what they will...next you will be telling me that grizzly bears need the same thing...It's easy for you to lay claim to the freedoms they need without walking a mile in the Munns families shoes.



4/20/04
Melissa
The white man has taken everything else, why should they take one of the last things that are precious? It isn't right, they praise themselves and sit on there high throwns and talk about equality. But they mean equality for the white man. It's disgusting and it needs to stop. These creatures are sacred and they need to see that and understand it for once.



4/6/04
was it not the cattle that brought the t/b to the bisons.????its white mans law again,they make all the rules they will always exploit resources for money.



1/14/04
Alexis Hafla
I don't think that so many buffalo should be slaughtered. After all the cows only get the disease from the buffalo when they come in contact with the afterbirth, and then it's the rancher's fault for allowing the buffalo in with the cows at that time when they knew the risks. The ranchers are very possessive over our land, when their cows are just as, if not more, destructive of the land and the creek banks as they say the buffalo are. If the ranchers want to complain about the buffalo 'disturbing', their cows, then I can complain about the ranchers' cows disturbing the other wildlife like deer, elk, etc.

Plus, elk can carry the disease too, so why aren't they sluaghtering all of them? Because the elk aren't a problem for the rancher's ground.



12/12/03
Rhonda Sanchez rhonda.sanchez@na.manpower.com
I commend the efforts of the environmental activists. This issue needs to be known by every american.Federal land should be owned by native american organizations and they can lease it to ranchers.We forget who was here first and their land taken from them by the government.The bison are being slaughtered senselessly by the Montana Department of Livestock. It is our defective government that appointed them to the task. Let's hit em in the pocketbooks, BOYCOTT MONTANA BEEF !!!



12/3/03
dejesuswm@hotmail.com
This is just another example of "white-man's" thinking, when it comes to the lives of other peoples. Whites take what they want use up any resource they want. They have the money they make the laws. They even control what other countries do if there's a "national interest". National Interests = MONEY

More money for those in power, the more money they get the more powerful they get. In the meantime our country slowly loses its great natural treasures. It is sad to see the things poeple DO for the love of money and the drive for more power they have sold their souls to the devil.COWS are a European animal and Buffalo is a Native of America. History repeats itself! Drive the Natives into remission and into concentration/reserves and the OUTSIDER gets the best there is. It is a disgrace that in this day and age we are still letting this happen.The buffalo is as important as the Bald Eagle, the turkey, the Great Condor,and the Florida alligator.They should be protected from senseless slaughter. Controlled hunting/harvesting might be a better way to keep their numbers in check. but don't displace them from their natural home and let them roam free as they see fit. I would like my daughter who is only 20 mos. old to have the opportunity when she grows old to see the Buffalo Roam as free as it once did. And for her to know that It was us who reversed the damage as good stewards of this great land.

P.S. Buffalo meat is tastier, leaner and better for you than beef.



11/24/03
Judith´┐Żjashuman@earthlink.net
The actions and attitude of the Montana authorities and ranchers are sickening, and so is the meaningless slaughter of the bison. These bison are every bit as much a symbol of this country as the bald eagle and the turkey, probably more so. I cannot adequately express the disgust, sadness, and horror I felt while watching this program. I am writing to The Nature Conservancy and to The National Resources Defense Council to see if they will take up the cause. Their websites are at nature.org and www.nrdc.org - please join me.

To PBS: I am MOST disappointed that nowhere in your online pages about The Buffalo War is there any mention of how the buffalo are not a problem in Wyoming, important contrasting info that was on the TV program. Would you please rectify this?



11/17/03
Trina Kolvek RvnWlf37@aol.com
Yet again ignorance and greed are robbing this country and all it's peoples of our rights to our heritage. I look around at every living thing that made America, "the promised land", and so much of it is gone. Home, where the deer and the antelope play? Where the buffalo roam? They say that is our history and what makes America beautiful. Prove it in 5, 10, 20 years. Tell my future grandchildren that they once existed and why they no longer exist! They will probably think you are just pulling their leg. Just like the DOL is pulling ours now!



11/17/03
axestick@earthlink.net
dont you folks have, anything better to do than kill innocent buffalo there was a special last night i saw on cable very informative about your numbers and it seems this hatred is due out of the age old answer to everyone s problem which is greed for the Great White Hunter "The Munns"pLEASE THERE ARE OTHER SOLUTIONS RATHER THAN TO KILL THE BISON. YOUR SPECIAL STATED THAT YOUR FIELD TESTS ARE ONLY SUPERFICIALLY CORRECT YOU MUST BE TOTTALLY CORRECT AND PLUS IT WOULD SEEM THAT YOU COULD THOUROUGHLY SEPERATE YOUR HERD WITH THE BISON THERE ARE SO MANY OTHER WAYS AROUND YOUR PROBLEM I ENDORSE ANYTHING PEACEFUL AND YOURS "THE MUNNS " WAYS AND THE GOVERNMENTS SEEMS TO BE A WAY OF PURE HEDONISTIC SLAUGHTER



11/17/03
Dan P.
The FDA requires vaccination of cattle against many diseases including Brucellosis. The ranchers would not be able to sell their product if they were not vaccinated. There is no evidence of bison spreading Brucellosis to cattle(despite what ranchers "think"). There have been a number of reports of elk transmitting the disease to cattle. The department of livestock and ranchers never seem to mention this. What's next? The eradication of all living things that may or may not carry a disease? Ranchers and D.O.L don't own these bison. They have no right to kill or control these wild animals. They pose no threat to anyone or anything. LET THE YELLOWSTONE BISON ROAM FREE!



11/17/03
Wow there are a ton of states that sell Beef if they have such disreguard for the National Treasure (Buffalo) then Maybe the rest of the country should wake up and Boycott any beef from The Great State of Montana grrr this makes me so mad Sincerely David D



11/17/03
I live in Nevada, and have only seen a couple of Buffalo in my lifetime. I am 29 years old and what does that say about the Buffalo Problem? I feel that as a country we can not, and should not, trample upon someone else's beliefs. There is always a way to live in harmony with nature. I believe that in order to protect the precious Buffalo, the government at Yellowstone should capture the Buffalo at Yellowstone and test them for the disease they are searching for. Any animals that are infected can be treated or quarantined. We need to come up with a better way of testing and treating these animals. Then any all the animals that are same and free of disease can roam and feed free with the cattle, no problems of contamination. Any sick animals can be contained until a treatment is found. Killing these precious recourses, Gods Creatures, is not an option. I sincerely hope that something can be figured out so that we all may live in harmony and act upon our beliefs.



11/4/03
Aaron gibby_80@mail.com
I am a high school student studying this problem for my Environmental Science class. Even though I don't live near Yellowstone Park where this problem is happening I still feel that I have a part in this problem. I feel that the Buffalo in Yellowstone are not being treated how they should be. I believe that the DOL (department of livestock) in Montana should take more care in how the Bison are treated and cared for. The way that the Bison are being treated is inhumane but I also believe they should use any means neccesary to resolve the problem at hand



7/11/03
Tricia tricia502002@yahoo.com
It is the same old thing again. I am an Indian. The Buffalo is part of my heritage, I believe that all -parties- can meet in he middle if they wish. The Montana folks and ranchers do not listen to anyone but themselves. Open your eyes, Please! The disease is not transmitted by the Buffalo. They have immune factors, cattle don't.As long as the Buffalo are gone and the cattle have a 45 day buffer zone, the cattle will be OK! But the sensless slaughter of the buffalo not right. The drug Carfentanil is so dangerous, to humans as well as the animals themselves. Please stop the slaughter. There is always another way, all we have to do is look for it. So LOOK !!!



5/1/03
Stacy Walker dazy_may@hotmail.com
I have researched this disgusting practice since I saw a program on A&E in late '99/early '00. I have also wondered why the elk are not slaughtered in the same way (especially since, as Michael Mease of the BFC said, the only documented cases of brucellosis transmission from wildlife to cattle have been from elk), and the only thing I can find to answer this question is that Evel Knievel found out that many elk were being slaughtered in Yellowstone, and in 1961, he hitch-hiked to Washington, DC with elk antlers and presented his case to a JFK Presidential Aide, a Congressman, a Senator, and the Secretary of the Interior. After that the slaughter was stopped. I also found out today that there was a case of brucellosis found in Idaho recently (that was also from elk), and the governor of Montana is using that as an excuse to keep up the slaughter of the bison.



4/14/03
would it be possible to send the buffalo to china to help feed the growing chinese population.also,need to plant buffalo grass,and plant more trees, to stop sars,the hoof and mouth cattle disease,and the chinese yellow dust storm viruses caused by the growing desert storms of china and africa (chad).any information on this project would be very helpfull.



12/17/02
I think that some of the stuff about the Buffalo was good but I think that you should put more detail about what the Native Americans used the Bison for so they can actually learn more about them and the Bison.



12/4/02
Lennox D. Curle
I must say it is disgraceful that american prejudice is still strong when it comes to the buffalo. Maybe ranchers should be raising buffalo instead, for one thing, buffalo meat is a lot leaner than cattle meat. Ranchers in Montana mentality is still locked in the 1800's not in today's modern world.



12/4/02
After watching this program the feelings that filled me were saddness and disgust. If this war was on humans there would be an outrage about excessive use of force. The most disgusting thing is the Montana DOL's entrapment and seduction of the bison. They bait their facilities during lean times to draw the bison out of yellowstone. And then they have the audacity to say they are only interested in trapping the bison that leave the park. The facility on Horse Bute should have been outlawed by the owner, the fed. govn't. They should NEVER renew any private leases of the public lands again. The only reason for this to be going on is to desimate the herd so that ranchers can use those lands year round. THIS IS ALL ABOUT MONEY! The state govn't and all it's officials prove their ignorance by allowing this to continue. Brucillosis is a PATHETIC EXCUSE for this type of behavior. I have one thing to say to them... GROW UP and take responsibility for your actions. I live in NY and if such things were going on here you would be arrested and fined for cruelty to animals. I have great respect and admiration for the Buffalo Peoples and my heart brakes for them. The fact that this is thought to be the last free range herd and ranchers want to "manage" them is really disheartening. How do you justify doing so if they really aren't posing any type of problem (I think the rancher's and state's arguments are VERY VERY WEAK). I understand that rancher's have a right to make a living but GIMME A BREAK! They seem to be throwing a lot of Bull. We all should be outraged at the abuse of power.



11/26/02
When I watched this program on PBS, I was appalled! I couldn't believe this was still going on in this day & age. The government is still regulating how the Native peoples live. Still regulating what animal should live, how, & where, i.e. they did this to the wolf. The government still has no consideration for the beliefs/the way of life of our Native peoples. Everytime I see racism in action it's nauseating to me. Ms. Little Thunder spoke of how ugly people were the Lakota when they'd stop for the night. When will the racism end?! When will the slaughter end? Not only of the buffalo, but of the Native peoples' way of life? If the government would DARE to admit the wrong that's been committed against the Native peoples (and all ethnic groups) perhaps the rest of the country would see that racism is WRONG & UGLY. But it must start w/ the government!! Right the wrongs that have been committed since ole Christopher Columbus first set foot on this land.



11/26/02
What I witnessed this evening, by watching PBS' "The Buffalo Wars", doesn't look to me to be an attempt to eradicate disease or to protect the cattle industry. Moreover, it appears to be nothing more than a blatant attempt to disregard Native culture and bring even more of "The people" under the Fed. Government's control by eliminating what has, for so long, been a part of the Native Americans' Culture and way of life. I am extremely unhappy and disenchanted with the unfair way in which our Native population is "set aside", while others are being given such preferential treatment. I would change such issues, if I could, but I'm only one person, and find that whenever the subject of Native Americans past, present and future history is brought up, most people can't discuss the subject matter intelligently, as they have never been taught anything about THE PEOPLE...other than what they have seen in the movies. Hopefully, a proud culture will continue and live on thru the teachings of t he Elders and their tribal leaders and their beliefs.



11/18/02
Kari Geiger
I had no idea this was going on. I live on the Great Plains and how this got past me I don't know. All of the attention was on Yellowstone. Is this happening with the great herd in Custer State Park in South Dakota? I have a strong impression that the government is acting in a futile and uncompromising way. The destruction of the bison doesn't seem to benefit anyone and in fact does more harm than good. Is there no hope for a compromise that would save face for the government and create a new respect for these animals and the native American?



10/29/02
Kristy Venne
My husband and I visited Yellowstone National Park in September for the first time, and our fondest memory was of huge bison crossing the road, causing a traffic jam. I was unaware that a "Buffalo War" was going on until now, as I do research on a lesson to teach elementary children about Native American Life. I plan to teach my 3rd graders of this controversy, and have them write letters to the national park service as well as the USDA. There must be more of a united hightening of awareness of issues such as this if a change is to take place. What better way than with children, our future ? They must learn about not only the mistreatment of the Native peoples, but the disregard for the Native peoples way of life via the Buffalo.



10/25/02
Dakota
i am only 16 years old and i am navajo and half lakota but in my heart i am all lakota even if only half of the lakota trib lives in my vains. i think that they should leave the Boffalo alone let them run free as they were in the old days havent they suffered enough by the white mens hands?? they should tern over the baffalo to the native americans to the land that belongs to no one. and they called us savages when they are the one who are savages when it came to the battle of little big horn and all of the native americans they have killed wemon and children some and now they wont to kill off the last of the baffalo which is sacred to us just like they did millions of years ago to some tribes along the pacific and atlantic coast. i say dont let the white men push you around take charge.



10/11/02
ben mcgee
I think he indians should still have thier land. Because they are just like us



9/20/02
For my first oppion I personally think that the bison have a right to the land but we also need to do something about them. To me killing the bison is not so bad if it is do knoeing they may hae brucellosis. This opption may not always work but all people need to know what is going on with the bison. I noticed that someone had sayed that a transmission of brucellosis had not been transmitted to cattle when in fact it can happen. Montana is now brusellosis-free while Wyoming has lost their statis because of the transmision to cattle. On the other hand bison are not the only ones that have brusellosis. Elk, deer, wolves and many more mammels have the disease as well. So those who thing that just bison can transmit the disease they need to look harder at waht they are saying and then try and do what you may think is good. For the Indians they should be able to get the bison after it has been killed this way we will be able to keep the ways of life for those who need the bison for trad itional perposes. Let me know how you feel and if yiu think I am wrng in any way.
Thanks



9/18/02
Osiyo
I am a white/cherokee-creek woman who lives in the south,I was raised white ,but my mother taught us to keep with the native beliefs. The Buffalo/Bison has been a part of the peoples way of life for century's. Their need of the Bison in hunting ,surveing ,eating ect is no different then much of what the white culture believes in as has been stated. But I would like to make a sugjestion about the over crowding problem Because they are neccessary to the people why not send the over stock to the reservations ,let the people have back their ways ,their foods,there beliefs .The bison is food no more different then one going hunting deer,rabbit,quail,gator or going to get that wonderfull steak from the bull,or the chicken. But the real difference is the bison holds more then just the food aspect here it holds a rightfull heritage to the people. So rightfull,concideration is to send the over stock to the reservations where they can grow there own stock,and replenish their heritage. I really can't say as to where we came from ,I believe that the creator will let me know when the time comes ,but untill then I choose to try to do the right thing,and folks let me tell you,it hasn't been done so yet for the indigineous peoples of this land. We can gripe about what ever what race did to what BUT LETS GET REAL when was the last time The American Indian{i use that tip-toeingly} got the fair deal,heck you give more to the foriegners then the folks that owned this land and shared this land. WELL ITS time to throw in the RETURN OF WELCOME MAT !! Yes return the buffalo,and give the people their life to live as they choose. Did you realize that kids have more rights in this country concerning what they want to wear,how to wear it,rather to dissfigure theirselves ect.,then the native has in haveing the right to their own beliefs,this is screwed up. Well have spoken enough, Would be more then glad to hear views personally at wolfspirtdncr@aol.com
Dawn "Morningstar" Trent



5/19/02
If only the human population would slow down for two minutes and reflect on what is truly important in life. Is building a new home worth destroying any animals? Is making an extra buck worth it to all these land developers? What happened to a simple, happy life? When was the last time anyone sat down with their family to play a board game? When was the last time you noticed how blue the sky was or how green the grass really is or all the different shades of blue and green? An animal only takes what it needs to survive. They do not kill anymore than they need. They say the human race is intelligent. I say not. Why would we take more than we need in this life? So many do. If we all took just what we needed to survive instead of trying to impress or keep up with someone else, how happy can we truly be? We must look at ourselves in a mirror and ask this question. Let us share our education of the environment. I have found that it is a lack of education and understanding that faults us humans. Animals do not need this education as it is part of their adaptation for survival. Take only what you need without disturbing others. Be thoughtful in sharing and caring for others. We must learn from our environment. We should not expect the environment to adapt to our needs, but for us as a human race to adapt to the environment as it was created to be.



5/17/02
chuck sampson indiancharlie@techline.com
if there is so much fuss over wather thes god biven creatures can live togetger as one, just as us humans must leave them alone, or allow for the native Americans to harvest them in this area and reduce the animals. both bison and cattle alike and bring them both down to parity as long it is used for subsistence for their people, and share with other tribes, to you native americans who may read thistogether we are, abundant and strong, alone you are weak and fragidle



4/25/02
Ben cincy_benn@yahoo.com
The so-called "management" of the bison is another example of our disrespect for the very basis of the life and great wealth we have here in America. The movement to dismantle our own foundation continues. I submit that we are the nuisance, not the buffalo.



4/25/02
Marilyn Lyons lyons.p@insightbb.com
I was appalled while watching the slaughter of these beautiful creatures on this PBS program. I may have been more understanding if the elimination of the buffalo was to stop the spreading of a disease that could cause major loss of cattle or infect the meat supply. However, it seems the slaughter is taking place simply because farmers don't want to "possibly" risk lowering their incomes. How tragic, it turns out, that 80% of the buffalos killed met an unwarranted and needless death.

There has got to be a better way. According to the USDA they have found it but Montana Department of Livestock officials won't listen?? Time for the USDA and National Park Service to get their shameful butts in gear and do something about this atrocity. Perhaps it's time to rethink the use of public lands (Yellowstone) for private grazing. What is the status of the buffalo as it pertains to endangerment? As a Yellowstone tourist I'd rather see a buffalo than another cow any day. And as a humanitarian I echo what Margaret Meade said...'You can tell a lot about a people's humanity by how they treat their animals'.



4/16/02
brenda
I believe it is time to return our lands to the rightful animals that belong here,and are native to this country.Here in COLORADO we are wiping out ELK herds by the thousands because of CHRONIC WASTING DISEASE,yet we have no WOLF population,we are about to institute a "kill'em all" policy to eradicate our poor black bears because this greedy state will not stop destroying our wild areas,therefore,if we just kill them,they won't be a problem...why can't we just re-introduce native species back to their native habitats,and let MAKA INA(MOTHER EARTH)take care of herself right.CATTLE ARE NOT NATIVE TO THESE LANDS!!!!!To give this animal precedence over native species is a GROSS error in LAND MANAGEMENT!!WE NEED TO STOP DESTROYING THIS EARTH.



4/10/02
Tricia Hernandez trivcia502002@yahoo.com
Our elders have always taught us to use moderation in all things. So why can't all of us get together and work this out. The Buffalo belong there, so do the ranchers. We can live in harmony if everyone will wwork together. Stop behaving like children and treat the Buffalo with the respect they deserve, and like the wonderful beings they are. WE are all wonderful beings, and deserve the same respect.



2/12/02
I don't think that it is right to slaughter these poor innocent animals. people who use buffalo hides are people with no self remorse or respect for nature.



2/12/02
Filmmaker Matthew Testa Buffalojumppix@aol.com
Mr. Mundinger's observation is correct, and it's an interesting point to explore. As often happens in compromise agreements of this nature, many parties signed off on the Record of Decision reluctantly, after a federal judge ordered that some kind of interagency agreement be reached. Mr. Finley and Mr. Collins have longstanding records of publicly opposing key elements of both the Record of Decision and Interim Bison Management plans. And some agencies are still struggling to understand why bison are being trapped and slaughtered right now, many months before cattle are due to arrive in the area. But every agency feels that forging some kind of agreement has at least provided a framework for discussion and policy making, which has to be more productive than the eight years of lawsuits that pre-dated the Record of Decision (ROD). The ROD - which perpetuates the trapping and killing of Yellowstone bison on public lands - has been a bitter pill for many in the US Park Service and US Forest Service, but most agree it provides at least a small step in the right direction by bringing all the parties to the table.



1/22/02
John Mundinger
I found it curious that two federal officials,Mike Finley with the National Park Service,and Patrick Collins with the Department of Agriculture, were openly critical of the bison management plan. However, their respective agencies, including Mike Finley, approved the Record of Decision to implement the bison management plan.



1/04/02
David Hamilton
I have to admit, I didn't see the television program described in this website. I came across this site while curious about the existing state of buffalo (not bison, damn political correctness) in our country, due to a recent sojourn of mine through the written works of Larry McMurtry. I have to say that I was rather depressed to see that what little wild buffalo we have left are STILL under duress. You'd think that we, as a nation, could maintain at least one symbolic wild buffalo herd without constant warfare. I'm not expertly qualified to render judgement on our culture, but damn, we have a short memory when it comes to our heritage. My thoughts on the situation are centered on the suggestion that we, the public, strip all usage rights for public lands from private industry. I remember recently seeing a similar issue raised in Nevada, where ranchers were abusing public lands and were fighting to keep usage rights. We have not, as a people, set aside the laudably vast tracts of land for public enjoyment to have it grazed and mined by private industry. Having these reserves unused and untouched (by private industry) so that future generations can know what our country's greatest treasures contain was the sole purpose of creating national and state preserves. I cannot describe how irritating it is to read that the last wild buffalo are being persecuted because a damn cattle rancher is afraid his PUBLICLY FED cattle could become contaminated by diseases carried by wild buffalo. Tell me, how much do these noble ranchers pay us, the landlords, for the extermination of our past? I realize that there are separate issues, such as the fact that the buffalo occasionally migrate outside the national park. On this point, the ranchers have a valid grievance. I feel a possible compromise solution lies in stripping private industry of usage rights, combined with a revived disease control program for the buffalo herd.



12/5/01
rick adams
very upset after seeing the killing of these great animals, I justed wanted to throw out some ideas and maybe someone out there can help.
1. Are there any marketing people who can help organize or recruit grocery chains to boycott montana beef and promote buffalo safe beef from other states?
2. Are there any people that have connections with any indian tribes that have casino interests that could help in funding and promote the buffalo?
3. Is there anyone who would know a famous person to be a spokesperson for this good cause, someone who lives there would be great like clint eastwood? Lets put are heads together we can make a difference!!!



11/30/01
Abie M.
I'm trying to let the people who were trying to scare the buffalo away from the slater pits. What I would suggest is trying tying a small plastic bag, like the ones you pack your groceries in from the store, to a long pole or stick. Then shake it in front of the buffalo, I've seen it work on elk. Another suggestion would be, is to use rattle snake rattles to turn back the buffalo.



11/30/01
Donna Poehner
I was very moved by this show. The scene of the sacrifice to the buffalo was especially moving. I think the film makers did an excellent job of portraying the points of view of the various factions. I'm glad to see these issues dealt with. I would like to see more television like this--interesting, informative, and real.



11/30/01
Dennis Schul
I'm for whatever it takes to stop the slaughter of the most (besides maybe the eagle) American symbol we still have living free, as all Americans should live, FREE. It's a spiritual symbol that should be treated as such, and if the Buffalo Field Campaigne saves one extra bison from needless slaughter, they are doing a GREAT job, and I back them all the way. I'm behind the Indian nations who are one with the buffalo, may their spiritual battle be victorious! The DOL's way is not humane at all, and Montana doesn't even want to listen to better idea's. Lately our patriotism has grew from the terrorist tragities, let it grow here, and end this buffalo war, I think the bison and cattle can share the land, but if there's a choice, it's got to be the bison. Bison ranches are going to take over cattle ranchs in the future I believe anyway. Bison is better than cattle in EVERY way. Save the Yellowstone Buffalo!



11/30/01
Diana
The general public needs to more about what is happening to the Yellowstone buffalo/bison when they step outside of the park. I visited Billings Montana for the first time 3 weeks ago, with a side trip to Yellowstone. We saw a small herd of buffalo while leaving the park. I had no idea this herd were the survivors!

When I saw the program it made me sad, angry, and outraged. The Montana dept of livestock should buy the cattle ranchers out, minus federal grazing permit costs. The ranchers do not possess absolute right to graze cows on federal (public) land. It is a misuse of federal resources. The state agency should protect this last-remaining legacy of buffalo - not murder them. It is ironic to see the cattle ranchers benefit in every way from federal and state support, while destroying land and wild life. I'd like to learn how a few ranchers were able to entitle themselves. Native American tribal communities were repeatedly forced on to reservations, and forced to adapt or adopt to an alien way of life with no compensation. Native communities should co-manage federal lands, wilderness areas, parks, etc. especially in the West, Alaska and Hawaii. And, U.S. Forest Service land should not be a killing ground.



11/29/01
enrico curreri
Beautifully done!



11/28/01
Ralph Manzo
I was taken by the program "Buffalo War". It is truly sad that my species so often only is interested in what is best for humans, and selected groups of humans at that. We show such disregard for the well being of those species which have the misfortune of living on this planet during our rule of it. Sometimes I actually feel ashamed to be a human. My hope is that somehow the buffalo activists and indigenous peoples shown in the program can save this last wild Buffalo herd.



11/26/01
Sharon Segal
I have always had a great respect and admiration for the Buffalo/Bison. Your program was, sadly, very enlightening. What can I do to get involved in the protection of these magnificent animals?
Thank you!

<< For ways to help, please refer to the Resources section of this Web site and also the Viewer's Guide. >>



11/26/01
Gary Olson
Sitka, Alaska
I am writing because I have a different experience to share. A small blurb in the (Buffalo War) program stated that the "buffalo were slaughtered in order to bring the Native Americans to their knees". I believe this statement to be an undeniable truth. Where I live, in Southeast Alaska, the Herring mean as much to the Tlingit Indians as the buffalo mean (or meant?) to the Plains Indians. The State of Alaska and US Government are allowing a systematic slaughter of the Pacific Herring in our region. The efforts of Manifest Destiny will never die. Thank you for your time.




11/26/01
Delores Taylor
The efforts of the activists are to be commended. They have brought public awareness to this issue. Unfortunately they are not as effective as we would like. If there hasn't been rallies at the capitol, maybe they should be considered. Federal lands should be used for federally protected animals only. If buffalo/bison are not federally protected, they should be. The slaughter of the bison shows disregard for life. If it stands in the way of industry, it has always been destroyed; human or animal, makes no difference. I am an American, and like my country, made of many nationalities. Life should always be preserved over any industry. Ranchers can choose bison over cattle. It is a much healthier food source. And one I prefer over cattle. The government should set programs to help farmers/ranchers switch to bison/buffalo, or even have both cattle and buffalo. I am not an observer which just speaks without acting. I will be actively trying to help with this problem. Please keep me updated on the progress. Thank you
Take care and have a blessed day!



11/20/01
Chris Sevegney
I just watched the pbs program about the slaughter of the bison and it was very upsetting to me. I can't believe that the Native American people are still having to fight so hard for the buffalo. It was sick the way the buffalo were slaughtered back in the early 1900's to kill the Native people and the slaughter is still going on today. Why can't the government help the Natives out since their has been such injustice to them over the years. I feel very strongly about the issue of the bison, and other native issues as well and if there is anything I can do to help support these issues please let me know. Sincerely, Chris Sevegney



11/13/01
Raymond E. Bowden
These are questions in response to an Idaho PBS presentation.As I understood the information presented, cattle can become infected with brucellosis from elk and bison. Bison have been routinely slaughtered to protect cattle, but not elk. Many parts of Idaho have cattle grazing in elk country for the entire grazing season. I have seen elk intermixed with cattle. But we do not slaughter elk on a wholesale basis.
Q. 1. Why aren't Idaho cattle all infected from brucellosis from elk?
Q. 2. Can cattle actually become infected by buffalo during grazing season?
Q. 3. Can cattle actually become infected by elk during grazing season?
Q. 4. Is the real reason for shooting buffalo on public lands which are leased out for cattle grazing is that they are eating grass that would be there for the cattle if the buffalo didn't eat it?
Q. 5. How many years were the ranchers shooting the buffalo unbeknownst to the general public before the 'greens' and Indians began to open it up to the world?
Q. 6. It is claimed but not proven that buffalo can infect cattle with brucellosis. Why haven't researchers placed some brucellosis infected buffalo in an enclosed area with uninfected cattle for a 12 month period to see if, what and when something happens? To avoid sabotage, the experiment could be conducted on an Indian reservation.
Ray Bowden



11/13/01
Lisa Kelly
Hi I recenlty saw your broad cast on my local pbs station I sometimes cannot believe how people cannot live with these beautiful creatures.Okay they may be a nusance sometimes but guess what they were here first. Can some of them be moved into an area in which they could also survive without humans disrupting, there habitat,of course leaving some where they are at present. Also it seems that cattle, other live stock have A variety of illnesses and diseases that wipe out livestock, that dont have anything to do with Buffalo please tell me what we can do to help with this ongoing problem.. Thanks Lisa Kelly



11/13/01
Linda Jasper
We are treating the buffalo like we have everything else that has been on the land before us. We have to move it, kill it, or just get rid of it so "we" can use the land to our advantage. I really think it is wrong to do this. The buffalo was their long before the cattle. It really goes back to money. Who has the most dictates what is done! The land belongs to the people and the native animals.



11/12/01
Shloime Perel
Not a single case of brucellosis transmission, in the field, from healthy bison to cattle has ever been discovered. On the other hand, elk, unlike bison, roam free in Montana among cattle, yet the State of Montana does not have a hazing and killing campaign against them. Why, then, the intolerance against the buffalo? Might there be cultural-historical reasons? The cattle industry has a history of intolerance toward native animal species "on the range," based on the mistaken belief that their existance contradicts that of the cattle. The most tragic instance of this, still ongoing, is that of the prairie dog (a member of the squirrel family), killed in the millions. Prairie dog are a key species for the plants and animals in the plains ecosystem, yet they have fallen victim to the prejudices of the cattle industry, which has mobilized the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture to continuously slaughter them. The supreme irony of all this is that it is the cattle industry that kills the cattle, yet kills other species under the mistaken rationale of protecting the cattle.



11/12/01
Mike Wicks
The slaughter of animals native to this continent is taking place under the stated reason of protecting animals not native to this continent. The disease brucellosis is not native to this continent either. It was imported along with the cattle, and the buffalo that test positive for this disease actually contracted it from the cattle. This disease causes cows to abort their calfs, yet not one single case of a buffalo aborting a calf due to the disease has ever been recorded. Which proves the buffalo have been exposed to the disease, but it does not affect them in the same manner that it does cattle. Buffalo are able to overcome the disease while cattle are not. Buffalo should be allowed to graze on federal lands as it is their natural migrational area. Cattle should not be allowed because they spread disease to the native inhabitants - the buffalo.



11/8/01
Larry James Luxton
Yellowstone bison should be allowed to live on public land whether there are cattle on the land or not. Bison are more of a native than cattle. Cattle owners graze there cattle for free or nearly free on public lands. Cattle should be the first to go from public lands, not bison. If the bison have burcellosis, wouldn't their numbers be greatly depleted? Is that the case? I doubt it.



11/7/01
Jill Axford
As the Lakota People walked with the sacred pipe to Yellowstone Park," praying their way " through the elements of weather, prejudice and hardship I found them to be the honorable ones in the buffalo war. Young and old walked the long road to hold a piercing ceremony which "from the pain they suffered had humbled them." They did this to honor the buffalo.
In contrast, the ranchers held a picnic and took pictures of their family romping and eating fried chicken. It seemed such a shallow effort to show solidarity for their way of life after seeing the flesh of the Native man pierced with pieces of wood that were tied by a rope to the skull of a buffalo.
The ranch owner said he didn't want the buffalo to eat the grass that his cattle grazed. I can not grasp such selfishness nor can I understand his white supremist attitude. His relations did not say they were working hard to preserve the ranch lands and find a solution that would benefit the buffalo and help insure their future prosperity. They talked instead of the land devlopers who hover near by to grab the land and sell it for profit. A profit they will surely benefit from not the Lakota People. I can not imagine his loss will be great when he sells his herd and cashes in his land.
Where is the honor of a people who closed the door of the school gymnasiam in the face of the Natives, calling them dirty Indians? When Rosalie said she felt sorry for those who did such a thing and that she knew it was about what kind of people they were and not them as Natives her words told me of the spirit that keeps her people strong.
Blood tests revealed that 80% of the herd was disease free. Then why the killing of the herds? Is it not just as easy to supply winter feed for the herd as it is to round them up and slaughter them? I see the Montana government as weak and ineffective for not finding adequate ways to preserve the herd or work with the Native culture and recognize that the Natives are to be respected and treated with dignity simply because that is their land. When there is justice for the Lakota People and their way of life the buffalo will be free.



11/7/01
sean cunningham
This is the first I've heard of the Buffalo war, but being of Sioux and Cherokee decent,I am well aware of the many atrocities perpetrated on not only the first nations' people in america, but all indiginous peoples around the world.I see no difference in the extermination ATTEMPT of people vs. animals.It seems to me that it all boils down to one thing,GREED.People that have a heritage of moving from their homeland,to anothers'seem to act like a virus,using up all that is usable and eradicating all that is deemed unusable,then moving to fresh ground to duplicate the process.People housed in "RESERVATIONS",animals confined to limited areas, these are not mutually beneficial situations,this is the land of the free? for who? not the buffalo or the people that once roamed this once great nation.Only for the viral infection that now roams our land ,THE GREEDY.



11/6/01
Carol Wagner
The Yellowstone N.P. Buffalo herd -- the last of our free-ranging bison, with possible unique genetic traits -- should be protected as a national treasure. Instead, when they wander out of Yellowstone into their traditional winter range in Gallatin National Forest, the Federal Dept. of Agriculture (in charge of natl. forests) allies with Montana ranching interests to capture and kill them. This is done with Federal taxpayer money. I say, get the cattle out of Gallatin Natl. Forest and give excess Yellowstone bison into the respectful care of Native Americans.



11/5/01
basma samira
There was not one mention of Native Americans being able to make some kind of effort to provide a way to maintain bison on some of their reservations. The manure would fertilize, the bison would mow the lawn,so to speak,and raising bison would provide the sort of income to start to revitalize lands so in need of help. Self help I suppose is what I mean. Certainly a lot of forethought and physical work. If that is not a viable plan, well I am not sure that there is any real solution to the situation at hand.I tend to resolve myself to solve a problem before I turn to answers outside of myself.



11/5/01
teresa
It is unfortunate that the "dramatic" efforts of the activists are ineffective. Until a method is used that the government acknowledges/responds to from respect or duty, no gain will be accomplished. Neither the Federal Government, the ranchers, nor activists should have a single, deciding voice in bison management decisions. The entire effected public should as the space in question IS public land. The slaughters show not only a disregard for Native culture and wildlife but is a glaring reflection of the self-serving actions of those whose worlds are made very small by thorough intolerance.



11/5/01
Doug Boardman
I feel that the Ranchers and the State of Montana are in the wrong. The buffalo have a right to feed on the grass. It is public land that is open to the public. If we let them continue this slaughter there will be a way of life that will be terminated. It has been the way of the Native Americans and the buffalo for thousands of years to live on the plains, etc. The Ranchers should not be permitted to have their cattle on public land. I hope that there can be a peaceful solution found. I would hate to see the free life of the buffalo and the Native Americans come to an end. God be with both sides at this time.



11/5/01
Diane Martin
I am so glad your station is airing this program about the buffalo.I only wish it was on at an earlier hour. I believe public lands should be used for wildlife, not cows. The government makes no money worth mentioning by letting cattle graze on our lands. These buffalo need this grazing area. They pose no real threat to the cows that graze there. By the time the buffalo use "their" land the cows are gone and the winter sets in. When the cattle come back out in spring the buffalo are back in the park. The ranchers just want everything their way, just like always. I say give the public lands back to the buffalo and the people who really pay for it.



11/2/01
Barbara Warner
The slaughter of American bison is completely unnecessary as no known cases of brucellosis have been found to be transmitted to cattle . These cattle should not even be on public land as they do not belong to the public and are the cause of the bison slaughter as well as destroying habitat for other wildlife such as the wild horses that are being rounded up in increasing numbers. The activists and Native Americans are in thr right . What the state of MT is doing is a crime.


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