Change the the public’ perception of wolves by being an effective advocate for wolves. 

What does healthy activism look like?  The word transparency comes to mind when looking into The meaning of healthy activism. This means; openness, accountability, and straightforwardness in advocacy. 

Now add effectiveness in advocacy, and it’s about the desired outcome; changing the public’ perception of wolves from negative to positive. Just where does healthy activism work for achieving this goal?

Affective describes something that has been influenced by emotions, is a result of emotions, or expresses emotion. Effective describes something that produces a desired result. 

Is bashing hunters or arguing with, or threatening to kill hunters considered healthy activism? Or is it about feeding emotions from frustration? 

Affective is mostly limited to the world of psychology and deals with emotions, feelings, and moods. Effective is used in everyday language and means successful in achieving a desired result. 

Be effective striving for a healthy outcome. Change the the public’ perception of wolves; be an effective advocate for wolves. 

Photo of black wolf by John E Marriott

Graphic “I am not a trophy” made  by WODCW 

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Wisconsin can no longer afford to go back, back to the old way of thinking; the killing of wildlife in order to conserve them. For example; Wisconsin spent decades on wolf recovery, recovery of an imperiled species that was hunted to near extinction; then in a shocking twist, the state of Wisconsin legislature mandated a trophy hunt of wolves fresh off the Endangered Species List; 


If the wolf is not listed on the federal endangered list and is not listed on the state endangered list, the department shall allow the hunting and trapping of wolves and shall regulate such hunting and trapping as provided in this section and shall implement a wolf management plan. In regulating wolf hunting and trapping, the department may limit the number of wolf hunters and trappers and the number of wolves that may be taken by issuing wolf harvesting licenses. 2011 Wisconsin Act 169, wolf hunt. Read  more about changing Act 169 on Wolves of Douglas County Wisconsin’s blog click HERE

Good apples make it worthwhile…

Merriam-Webster defines activist as: a doctrine or practice that emphasizes direct vigorous action especially in support of, or opposition to one side of a controversial issue political activism, environmental activism.  My first action as an activist took place in 1971 on Earth Day. I set up a booth on the University of Eau Claire campus.  It’s been a protest, a sit in at a mining camp, to present day working to stop wolf hunting.  I’ve met some extraordinary activists along the way.  They’ve taught me more about how to be an activist. You see, they’ve led with their hearts born out of passion, for a cause they truely care about.

I have hope in people, in individuals. Because you don’t know what’s going to rise from the ruins.  ~Joan Baez

Then, there’s the learning curve (ouch). Just because you care doesn’t mean everyone will be a possitive role model in activism. I experienced the dark side of activism where the bottom lies.  If you let anyone put you down, they are not acting in your best interest; instead they’ve come from an unbalanced & sad place.  They are the ones still seeking balance in their lives and they are in pain.  The lyrics from the song “Let it Be” says it best:

And when the broken hearted people, Living in the world agree, There will be an answer, let it be, For though they may be parted, There is still a chance that they will see,  There will be an answer, let it be

Experiences such as; being lied to, being used and having my character assassinated by angry & unbalanced activists can take a toll. But it never led me to throw in the towel.  Why? Because for every bad experience there have been many good ones that make it worthwhile.  The following adage rings true; don’t let one bad apple spoil the whole bunch. 

Every activist experiences conflicts within their cause, in their advocacy community, and learns how to cope with upsets.

I’ve learned that bad experiences do make you strong.  Today I don’t waste my precious time on the few bad apples, instead I spend my time nurturing the good apples.

Hopefully the bad apples will find their balance. And I’m grateful for the learning experience. 

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