Hello and Happy Monday!
I know that we are all getting antsy as we continue to wait for Theodore Roosevelt National Park to release their Draft Environmental Assessment (EA). Today, we thought it would be good to talk about how to advocate effectively.
The very first thing when you are advocating for any cause is to make sure you have your facts together. REMEMBER: OPINIONS ARE NOT FACTS! Facts can be checked to make sure they are valid. That means that personal conversations that you have with people, where statements that were made directly to you but cannot be otherwise proved, cannot be used as factual information.
We know that there is a ton of misinformation that gets put out on a regular basis. As responsible advocates, we need to make sure we are NOT contributing to that pool of misinformation. When we do, it not only hurts our cause, but it also calls our credibility into question.
- A recent news story stated that the wild horses in Theodore Roosevelt National Park were protected under The Wild Horse & Burro Act. This is FALSE! It is also a HUGE part of why Chasing Horses Wild Horse Advocates has been and continues to fight for federal protection for these wild horses.
- Initially, TRNP stated on their website that every female horse aged 8 months old and up were being treated with GonaCon. We had a meeting with NPS Regional Director Herbert Frost, Superintendent Angie Richman and Chief Resource Manager Blake McCann. They clarified for us that they are NOT treating EVERY female horse, and have since updated their website to reflect that. You can read all of the FAQ’s here: Regardless, we do still believe that more research is needed with regards to GonaCon.
- When this process began in March of 2022, several other nonprofit organizations repeatedly urged their followers to “vote” for the alternatives being presented when TRNP was actually asking for what additional alternatives should be considered in the future management of this herd. TRNP REPEATEDLY stated that this was NOT a “vote”. The groups continued with their narrative and ALL of those comments that voted on a suggested alternative INSTEAD of new ideas that should be considered did not help the TRNP wild horses. At best, people voted for the 35-60 horses option, which we know is nowhere near what is needed for a genetically viable herd of horses.
We all have hectic schedules. We thought this short list would help you know what actions are NOT needed at this time:
- Please DO NOT contact our ND state legislators asking for their help. They UNANIMOUSLY passed SCR-4014, a state resolution asking Congress to help keep the wild horses IN Theodore Roosevelt National Park, during their legislative session earlier this year.
- Please DO NOT contact ND Governor Doug Burgum’s office asking for his help. In January, the Governor held a press conference and offered any resources available within the state of North Dakota to TRNP to allow the horses to stay.
- Please DO NOT contact our ND federal legislators. Congressman Armstrong, Senator Cramer, and Senator Hoeven are ALL in favor of keeping the wild horses in TRNP. Senator Hoeven is leading the charge as he advocates with us to keep the horses in TRNP.
Please DO feel free to send any or all of those people listed above a thank you letter, email etc. for their support.
What WILL help?
- FACTUAL letters to the editor
- Talking to everyone and anyone about the current plight of the TRNP wild horses
- Helping us spread the word by passing out our brochures. You can email us at email@example.com if you would like us to send you some.
- Let people know that the next public comment period is coming soon! The Draft EA is supposed to be out this summer. We need EVERYONE to comment! Let them know to watch our website for updates on when to comment as well as suggested comments.
- If you would like us to send you a folder(s) for your congressional contacts outside of the state of North Dakota, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we will be happy to send them to you. You can also find the information in our packets on our website in case you want to email the information to your representatives: https://chwha.org/media-info/
- Stay informed! Educate yourself! We have a TON of information in the Library section of our website: https://chwha.org/library/ We also hold regular “Horse Talks” that are posted to our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCeyTpwa2Y1yUsTaJ4TU-eNw
- If you ever have any questions, feel free to email us at email@example.com
- Help support the advocacy work that we at Chasing Horses Wild Horse Advocates is doing! We need volunteers to help us! If you are interested in volunteering, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We also need financial help! There are other organizations that SEEM like they are working with us to save these horses – they are NOT! Please feel free to email us and ask if a specific campaign to help the TRNP wild horses is helping our efforts. You can make a donation directly to Chasing Horses Wild Horse Advocates on our website: https://chwha.org/support-chwha/
While I can assure you that we at Chasing Horses Wild Horse Advocates do everything we can to provide you with FACTUAL information, we are far from perfect and make our fair share of mistakes, which we admit to and correct in the event that happens. Also know that we are working with our legal team at Eubanks and Associates, other national wild horse advocacy groups like American Wild Horse Campaign and In Defense of Animals, we are also working with our ND state legislators and Senator Hoeven’s office. We fact check the information we share with those people and feel pretty confident that we are working with an amazing group of people!
Thank you for your support! Have a GREAT week!
Chasing Horses Wild Horse Advocates is committed to advocating for a wild horse management plan and protection for these unique wild horses that call Theodore Roosevelt National Park home! We are fighting for a management plan that is guided by science especially when it comes to decisions regarding the removal of horses and the administration of birth control. Many other wild horse management plans have proven to be successful with their science-based plans. We are asking for the same for this amazing group of wild horses that call Theodore Roosevelt National Park home.