Bear or human - which is really the problem?

Posted: Wednesday, August 14, 2002

A real conversation on garbage day:

"Yes," replied the man in the work gloves as he picked up garbage strewn on the street and the stairs, "the large bear already got into the garbage cans that were set out earlier today."

"Hey, thanks for picking up this MESS," said the woman, who after surveying the scene wasn't really sure if it was safe or even appropriate to leave the garbage out that day considering the implications.

"No, problem, I am doing some excavation work at the adjacent property and can keep an eye on these cans before the garbage truck comes today. You know, they really need to deal with that problem bear."

The woman, sensing that "deal with the bear" meant to kill it, exclaimed in horror, "Well, don't you think that WE are the problem. You know, I still see people leaving garbage cans out on nongarbage days in this neighborhood. Also, bears are getting into compost piles. The bears are enticed into this area; they know food is available. WE are responsible."

"Yes, well, I was charged by that large bear this weekend," added the man.

"WOW!" she exclaimed.

"Yeah," he started to explain, "I was only talking to the baby bears ..."

"You are kidding," she said, interrupting him. "The mother was only protecting the cubs."

"Well, I didn't know the mother bear was around," he replied.

Think about it.

Adel Chapman

Juneau



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