SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR KEN SALAZAR, UNDER WHOSE AUTHORITY THE BLM FALLS, IS A CATTLE RANCHER FROM COLORADO. IT THEREFORE SEEMS TO BE A CONFLICT OF INTERESTS THAT HE SUPPORTS WELFARE CATTLE RANCHING AND WANTS TO ELIMINATE OUR WILD HORSES FROM OUR PUBLIC LANDS. THE BLM HAS BEEN ROUNDING UP, MAIMING, KILLING and MISMANAGING OUR NATION'S WILD HORSES AND BURROS FOR YEARS. THE 1971 FREE ROAMING WILD HORSE AND BURRO ACT WAS SUPPOSED TO AFFORD THESE MAGNIFICENT ANIMALS PROTECTION IN THE AREAS WHERE THEY WERE LIVING AT THAT TIME. SINCE THEN, THE BLM HAS STOLEN 20 MILLION ACRES FROM THEM. YET, THEY ALLOW 100 PRIVATELY-OWNED CATTLE TO EVERY ONE HORSE ON OUR PUBLIC LAND. DESPITE THIS, THE HORSES GET BLAMED FOR RANGELAND DEGRADATION. CATTLE GRAZING ON OUR PUBLIC LAND ONLY PRODUCES 3% OF OUR BEEF. THIS IS NOTHING BUT WELFARE RANCHING, AT THE EXPENSE OF THE WILD HORSE AND THE TAXPAYER.
DNA STUDIES OVER THE PAST FEW YEARS HAVE SHOWN THAT THE MODERN HORSE EVOLVED IN NORTH AMERICA. THEREFORE, HE SHOULD BE PROTECTED AND CHERISHED AS A NATIVE SPECIES. DESPITE PUBLIC OUTCRY, THE BLM HAS CONTINUED TO DISREGARD THE LAW AS IT RELENTLESSLY REMOVES HORSES AND BURROS FROM THEIR RIGHTFUL HOME, USING HELICOPTERS TO RUN THEM FOR MILES, INJURING AND KILLING MANY. RENOWNED WILDLIFE BIOLOGISTS, SUCH AS CRAIG DOWNER, HAVE STUDIED THE HORSE IN THE WILD AND HAVE CONCLUDED THAT HE IS AN IMPORTANT AND INTEGRAL PIECE OF THE NATURAL ECOSYSTEM. THE BLM ALREADY HAS 30,000 WILD HORSES IMPRISONED, AT GREAT EXPENSE TO THE TAXPAYER. OUR RANGELAND EASILY SUPPORTED 2 MILLION WILD HORSES A HUNDRED YEARS AGO, YET THE BLM WISHES TO REDUCE THEM TO LESS THAN 30,000 IN THE WILD.
TAXPAYER SUBSIDIZED CATTLE GRAZING DOES SEVERE DAMAGE TO THE RANGE. IT IS THIS SPECIAL INTEREST GROUP WHICH WANTS THE HORSES REMOVED AND DESTROYED. THE BLM MUST BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE TO UPHOLD THE LAW AND LISTEN TO THE DESIRES OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. WE URGE YOU TO REPLACE KEN SALAZAR WITH SOMEONE WHO CARES ABOUT THIS ISSUE, SUCH AS RAOUL GRIJALVA. TIME IS RUNNING OUT FOR AMERICA'S WILD HORSES AND BURROS.
We, the American public, urge you to replace the Head of the Department of the Interior, Kenneth Salazar. He has demonstrated that he is not willing or capable of addressing the wild horse issue in an effective way which takes into consideration the welfare of these animals and the will of most Americans. Polls show an overwhelming majority of Americans want the wild horse and burro protected as he was meant to be under the 1971 Free Roaming Wild Horse and Burro Protection Act. Mr. Salazar seems more interested in furthering the interests of a small handful of welfare ranchers. We implore you to look into this matter and to protect America's national treasure, the American mustang and wild burro. Thank you.
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