Saturday, January 21, 2012

Killing Bambi: Police Brutality or Justified?

Abbie, Pinkie, and their caretaker. 
What do you get when you take two cute, tame deer; concerned citizens who love feeding the deer; and a police officer with a loaded gun? A Minnesota-style mess. I just have to share this somewhat bizarre local story.

A couple from Forest Lake, Minnesota is in an uproar because the Forest Lake police shot and killed two deer on their property. The couple has been feeding these two deer since June when their mother apparently abandoned them. They went so far as to place fluffy bright collars around their necks and to name them Pinkie and Abbie. The Forest Lake police were asked by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to kill the deer because their collars identified them as potentially tame, disease carriers, and a "threat" to other wildlife.

For starters I personally think it's odd to feed the deer that roam around your neighborhood. It's even more strange to get so attached to the deer that you decide to give them names and collars. Whatever. This is a free country and you can supposedly do that in Forest Lake, Minnesota. The deer-loving couple thought they were doing a good deed by feeding the abandoned deer.

Why would the Minnesota DNR decide to take out these deer? I guess I don't understand how they could be considered dangerous or diseased because they had been exposed to humans who liked to feed and name the deer.

Worse yet is the choice made by the Forest Lake police department to shoot these deer right in the yard of the couple who is caring for them. This couple obviously considers them pets of sort, so it really was an inane decision on the part of the police to shoot Pinkie and Abbie on the property of people who had taken in the deer. Sort of like shooting Bambi in front of Walt Disney.

Couldn't this issue have been resolved differently? Maybe relocate the deer or ask the couple to stop feeding them. Or if you really, really feel threatened by these tame deer wearing pink fluffy collars, at least don't shoot them in the backyard of the people who are feeding them! Especially when it's not illegal to feed deer on your own property in Minnesota.

This may be an example of tax dollars at play or just plain stupidity.

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