In areas where many endangered species live, wildlife rangers stand between the animals and poachers. Animal meat, bones, or tusks can command great sums on the black market, and poachers use cruel and deadly tactics against both the animals and the rangers who care for them. Rangers can also be targeted in civil war and unrest. Sean Willmore of the International Ranger Federation told National Geographic that worldwide, two rangers are killed each week, but that number is likely a conservative estimate.
An article in National Geographic, “For Rangers on the Front Lines of Anti-Poaching Wars, Daily Trauma,” discusses in detail the challenges faced by rangers and the horrors endured by animals targeted by poachers. Interestingly, despite the danger, many feel called to be rangers and applicants far exceed positions.
I appreciate the work of the rangers, but they should not have to give their lives to protect these animals, and the lives of these animals should not be at risk. The international community must vigorously and relentlessly persecute black market traders while educating consumers about the risks to wildlife.
I wasn’t expecting to go to Hawaii this year, but I had a chance to visit my cousins and took it. We didn’t do many touristy things, but they took me to the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor. (The official name has changed to “World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument” and includes sites in Hawaii, Alaska, and California.)
While the most fun for me was seeing all my little cousins (four, ages 5 to 13), being at the site was very emotional as well since my grandpa served in the Pacific during World War II. Before boarding the boat that takes visitors to the memorial, we watched a short historical film which was so interesting (although it made most of us cry).
During World War II, my grandpa had leave in Hawaii. I was glad his photo was a solo portrait. Some of the men he served with were photographed with Hawaiian Hula girls. I always feel bad for them when I see the pictures.
My tribe, the Choctaw Nation, always sends great birthday cards! These cards are almost always the first to arrive. I much prefer mailed cards than email missives or even text greetings.
I was very upset with the Supreme Court ruling regarding Hobby Lobby’s appeal for exemption from covering birth control as mandated by the Affordable Care Act. One, corporations are not people (I don’t care what the SCOTUS claim). Two, it blurs the line between church and state.
Besides a few online petitions that I signed, I didn’t see any other calls to action until today. Then, in the Ravelry pattern feed, there was this….
I wish I could actually go to the Supreme Court for this event. In my stead, I am going to send a brick or two!
If you knit or crochet, you can make a block. For those interested who can’t knit or crochet, the Secular Coalition for America will make a brick for you with a small donation.
On hot and humid days like today, a cool treat provides some relief from the oppressive air. Something new I tried recently was making frozen banana bites. If I made it, truly absolutely anyone can do it.
Cut bananas into slices about 1/4th of an inch. Put a glob of peanut butter on a banana slice and top with a second slice. Put into freezer until solid. (You could experiment with waiting to freeze the bites until after covered with chocolate, but mine were too unstable to cover without freezing first.)
Melt chocolate. I used about half a bag of Enjoy Life Mega Chunks and melted the chunks in the microwave. The melted chocolate was a little thick, so I diluted it with water. Using a fork, I submerged the bites into the melted chocolate and then placed them in a plastic container. They fit in a single layer. If you have a smaller container, use wax paper to keep bites from freezing together.
Put back in freezer for several hours.