In a series of misspelled, defamatory “op-eds” datelined “Ammoland” and various venues in Florida, the New Jersey Outdoor Alliance, (NJOA) a militant hunting and trapping Political Action Committee, has gone off the rails.
Citizens searching for www.safebackyards.com to learn more about legislation potentially affecting the safety of their families and companion animals are greeted by reams of pejorative-filled spam. We apologize. NJOA is spamming search engines, and using the www.safebackyards.com URL, to prevent the airing of opposing views, and to prevent residents from learning the facts, and making up their own minds. Do reputable organizations stoop to such tactics? No.
NJOA is frantic over www.safebackyards.com. As detailed in "Who's Behind These Bills," NJOA which bills itself as the "voice of conservation," is inked to and its coalition includes nationally known "anti-environment" front groups. (Sourcewatch: National Animal Interest Alliance; Center for Consumer Freedom) for animal-use industries, including puppy mills, fur trappers and “ranchers,” blood sports, gun makers, archery manufacturers, trophy hunters, and more.
From a defensive posture only, the Animal Protection League of New Jersey (APLNJ) has identified -- and will continue to identify -- the industry front- groups, smear tactics, and coalition partners behind current legislative packages aimed at increasing hunter access to private and public lands -- at public expense.
The presence of practiced, “attack” professionals in New Jersey is new. And it is a problem.
According to the public interest watchdog organization, Sourcewatch:
The Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) (formerly called the “Guest Choice Network”) is a front group for the restaurant, alcohol and tobacco industries. It runs media campaigns, which oppose the efforts of scientists, doctors, health advocates, environmentalists and groups like “Mothers Against Drunk Driving,” calling them “the Nanny Culture -- the growing fraternity of food cops, health care enforcers, anti-meat activists, and meddling bureaucrats who ‘know what's best for you.’”
Over 40 percent of the group's 2005 expenditure was paid to Rick Berman's PR company, Berman & Co. for “management services.” As part of its operations CCF runs a series of attack websites, including “consumerfreedom.com, activistcash.com, cspiscam.com, animal-scam.com, fishscam.com, obesitymyths.com, physiciansscam.com [and] PetaKillsAnimals.com.”
NJOA's most recent abuse demonstrably proves our point. Instead of addressing stated truths, NJOA refutes no facts, or front-group alliances. Instead, the outfit attacks, defames – and spams.
Since 1983, “The Animal Protection League of New Jersey” has stood for non-violence, toward animals, and certainly toward other human beings. For a quarter of a century, the organization has engaged in constructive campaigns to protect animals from harm.
In behalf of its roster of clients, The Center for Consumer Freedom hires public relations staff to harass, denigrate, and attack humane organizations. “This is achieved by engaging in sophomoric arguments and unreferenced rumor mongering.” (Sourcewatch) Huntington Life Sciences is one of Center for Consumer Freedom's chief clients. Along with Kim Basinger and many mainstream organizations, APLNJ spoke out against egregious HLS practices, including breaking beagles' legs, helped preserve the First Amendment, and held a defense fund for HLS activists. APLNJ's executive director's name was added to a "press officers' list: from which she requested her name be removed. All 100% legal and above board. End of story. According to Sourcewatch (LINK):
[CCF represents] the largest importer of primates in the United States and the world's largest breeder of laboratory dogs. Likewise, there is no more staunch supporter of Huntingdon Life Sciences, than CCF.
Huntingdon Life Sciences is a Contract Research Organization (CRO) and laboratory animal breeding company. Huntingdon Life Sciences is the 3rd largest CRO in the world and the largest animal testing facility in all of Europe.  According to Inside HLS, a website that documents Huntingdon; HLS kills approximately 180,000 dogs, cats rats, rabbits, pigs, and primates (marmosets, macaques, and wild-caught baboons) per year testing products such as household cleaners, pesticides, weedkillers, cosmetics, food additives and industrial chemicals. Figures were obtained by averaging the numbers of animals from the U.S. Department of Agriculture reports and published reports from other government regulatory agents and overseers over the past few years. At any one period of time, there are approximately 70,000 animals housed in HLS facilities. All animals either die as a result of the experiments or are destroyed at the end. Like many laboratories, HLS uses Beagles due to their passive nature and unwillingness to bite. Their docile nature decreases resistance to placing tubes down their throats, restraining them and other procedures. , . They are the only UK laboratory to ever have their license revoked by the government.
Other Inaccurate Statements
a) “Safebackyards.com is sponsored by the Animal Protection League of New Jersey (APLNJ), who is intern [sic] funded by The Bear Education and Resource Group and Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and PETA.” False. Neither Safebackyards.com nor APLNJ are in any way “funded” by The Humane Society of the United States, the Bear Group, or People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. Even if this were true, what's the point? Unlike NJOA allies, none of these organization profits from the sale of guns and ammunition.
b) “Safebackyards.com is an expensive “Madison Avenue advertising campaign” that should alarm “donors.” False. Safebackyards.com was constructed entirely by volunteers. In fact, discrete donors funded the billboards.
c) Ungallantly, NJOA's chairman insinuates “eco-terrorism” to tarnish opponents of his coalition's quest for breached home safety buffer zones. Uncategorically false. (see above.)
d) NJOA asserts deception, and NJOA “disclosure” of APLNJ “front” group sponsorship of the Safebackyards.com coalition. False. Please review “Who We Are,” where we “proudly state that Safebackyards.com is sponsored by APLNJ.” NJOA pretends to “disclose” information taken from our own website. Remarkable. A non-profit animal protection organization that openly states its sponsorship is not a “front” for anything. Nor is Safebackyards.com a front for industries that profit from selling guns and ammunition posing as “animal welfarists.”
e) Asserting APLNJ's “naivety,” NJOA claims “conservation” - not industry hunter access campaigns -- is the reason for reducing home safety buffer zones. Please review “Who's Behind These Bills,” (See, National Rifle Association's “No Compromise: Hunter Access Will Not Be Denied.”)
Finally, the writer of the op-ed, trophy hunter Anthony Mauro, would have us believe that APLNJ's reference to preservationist John Muir is “blasphemous to all who revere him.” We'll let Muir speak for himself:
“The murder business and sport by saint and sinner alike has been pushed ruthlessly, merrily on, until at last protective measures are being called for, partly, I suppose, because the pleasure of killing is in danger of being lost from there being little or nothing left to kill, and partly, let us hope, from a dim glimmering recognition of the rights of animals and their kinship to ourselves.” (Letter to Henry Fairfield Osborn (16 Jul. 1904). In William Frederic Badè, The Life and Letters of John Muir.)
Muir waged, and lost, a Homeric battle against Gifford Pinchot, the first Chief of the United States Forest Service, who promoted the primacy of commercial control. Pretense has a way of revealing itself, usually in the details. An even remote familiarity with Muir's writings and opinions yields the knowledge that the naturalist abhorred hunting.
pertaining to S1181 are these: Broadhead arrows are
razor-tipped projectiles. Under S1181, nockked arrows will
indeed be permitted 151 feet, from an occupied dwelling - without
the homeowner's permission. Please write or call your legislator to
prevent the breach in home safety buffer zones. (See, "What
Can I do?").
From donations to John Muir to what is and what is not allowed under S1181, NJOA ought to get its facts straight. It is everyone's right to engage in public policy debates -- without being the target of personal aspersions, innuendo, abusive and gutter politics. We regret that tactics employed by NJOA and its associates necessitate this advisory.