A number of folks have in touch with me about saving the Franklin Park zoo from the Governor’s veto pen. I am supportive of doing that in principle. I don’t know whether to credit the threat to kill animals, but I do know that the zoo is an important educational and recreational institution in an underserved part of Boston and I feel strongly about it on that basis.
Two lines of information development are on going right now which will tell us whether we can save the zoo: (1) We are getting a better handle on the latest revenue estimates — so far we have not overridden the Governor’s money vetos; we just aren’t sure we can afford to as revenues continue to fall. (2) We are letting people sort out how the zoo can be saved in other ways. I’ll report back as progress develops, probably by the end of July. I am cautiously optimistic.
For an excellent blog post on the subject, click here. See also the exchanges at Blue Mass Group.
I share your appreciation of zoos as educational resources as well as recreational. Much to be said for personal contact with endangered animals particularly: people care more when they have experienced personal connections with animals.
That said, I take our current financial crisis very very seriously, and I see the zoo as a lower priority than many of the critical human service and public works needs in our state. I trust you to find a balance as we wend our way through this fiscal morass.
I disagree that animals should be imprisoned for our entertainment or education. There are plenty of alternative ways to accomplish both. And whenever and wherever there are financial crunches or other crises, zoos are always on the top of the list for cutbacks (and in many places they are simply abandoned, the animals euthanized or left to starve or to be taken for food by the local population).
This is not the first time that the zoos have been threatened by a tight economy in MA. The time is long past due that as an enlightened community we should phase out the zoos. The animals should be placed in sanctuaries where they can live out their lives in more natural surroundings, and any funds currently in the zoo budget should go as donations to those sanctuaries.
Children will be easily able to understand and appreciate this humane alternative to their occasional visit to a zoo. The land where the zoo is located will still be available as a recreational resource for the community.
Comments are closed.