On Memorial Day, when we remember the sacrifice made to protect our liberty, we should also remember the symbols of that liberty - the flag and the bald eagle. The image of the soaring eagle says it all. As we consider an amendment to protect our flag, we also need to protect our eagles' wild and free character.
In Alaska, where 50 percent of all eagles live, the eagles' character is at risk. Man, by tossing fish at eagles for commercial photos or personal entertainment, has reduced this symbol of liberty to a circus performer and dumpster diver. People love eagles and mean them no harm, but once fed by man - never wild again. Always the easy way out and always dependent on man, like the fed bear, the fed eagle may be served its last meal.
Communities from Southeast to Southcentral need to recognize this danger to eagles. Our national symbol, the soaring eagle, now keeps company with gulls and crows.
Every veteran who wore the eagle emblem should be angered by what we are doing to the eagle. Let's work together to bring the eagle back to the wild one we love. Demand that eagle baiting stop all over the state - not just in the Chilkat, but in Eagle River, Ninilchik, Deep Creek, Homer, and everywhere.
Susan and Gary Clardy
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