To the Editor:

The two articles in last week's Eagle about the defensive cougar shooting by a hunter raise a lot of questions regarding both the event and the spin of the story as it was reported. Browning was hailed as a cool, composed huntress; and there is no doubt those qualities served her well when the cat began to approach her. But back up a moment, and look at the circumstances that led to that encounter. She heard a cat's warning growl. Then she made the decision to move forward - toward the cat! Hello!! She ignored the warning, and she was not on a cougar hunt.

This is not about condemning the hunting of cougars - quite the opposite; there apparently are more than enough of them to sustain a healthy population in our area. My husband bought a cougar tag should he decide to take one.

This is not about defending yourself from attack when genuinely threatened by a predator animal. They were created to kill for food, but let it not be you.

This is about poor judgment: defined as hunting with regard only for your self-interests while disregarding the needs of wildlife.

So what should be taken away from Browning's self-defense killing of the cougar? "Extensive experience and love of the out-of-doors" should have alerted her to have enough sense to heed the warning signs and back off.

Take nothing away from Browning's skills that (thankfully) prevented her from being attacked; but the mother cat is dead, and now two young cubs are left to most likely starve to death. Far from a glory story, what a sad situation.

Kay Scheurer

Ritter

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