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Outdoors blog

Cyberspace loose with facts or flat out lying about Jeremy Hill grizzly case coverage

ENDANGERED SPECIES -- People want to hear what they want to hear about the Jeremy Hill grizzly bear shooting case, and some of them aren't letting facts get in the way of spreading their agenda on the Web.

My down-the-middle factual column on the issue last week pointed out the various considerations the case brings up as it heads to trial.

Now I'm seeing righteous people lie about what I said to discredit the column.  Here's one excerpt from a Idaho Freedom Foundation blog post by Wayne Hoffman (emphasis mine):

Not everyone is taking Hill’s side. Spokesman-Review columnist Rich Landers was quick to stick up for the grizzly and the feds, writing that while federal law lets people shoot wolves that are threatening people, but not so with grizzlies. ... Thus, Landers justifies and gives cover to the federal stance that has enabled Hill’s prosecution.

That's a total fabrication to make it look as though the law - and me, too - would find fault with a person protecting human life. Here's what I wrote:

Shooting a grizzly bear is serious business. The law says a wolf can be shot if it’s actively threatening pets or livestock, but no such caveat exists for shooting a grizzly.  Self-defense or the defense of another person are the only legal justifications for shooting a grizzly.

I clearly pointed out that Hill has legal justification to shoot a grizzly if it was threatening him or his children.

But Mr. Hoffman's words and those of others are circulating quickly in cyberspace for unquestioning people to consume and repeat with no regard for the truth.

Rich Landers
Rich Landers joined The Spokesman-Review in 1977. He is the Outdoors editor for the Sports Department writing and photographing stories about hiking, hunting, fishing, boating, conservation, nature and wildlife and related topics.

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