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The Killing of a Mountain Lion

March 20, 1988

What a sad, sad day for Yorba Linda, and what a regrettable lesson for our children. Unfortunately, Lyn Twiss and other Travis Ranch Elementary School teachers were required to give a Requiem rather than a lesson in conservation and proper stewardship. However, hopefully, the adults did not buy into the official line that the cougar, if tranquilized, might injure someone.

Certainly knowledgeable officials truly interested in preserving the life of this marvelous creature could have figured out that there was a way. It may have inconvenienced some of us, but it would have been far preferable to solving the problem through the barrel of a gun.

Streets could have been cordoned off, people (and pets) could have been ordered indoors, the schoolchildren could have been delayed in their walks to school, and then the cougar could have been tranquilized. Instead, there was panic all around. This action was not only unjustified but set a poor example of how to preserve life.

Anyone who takes a look around the bare and graded hills of Yorba Linda has to go no further than the City Council for cause of the cougar's venture into the tract. Surely the official who laid the blame, in part, to the ban on cougar hunts must know the reasons have far more to do with unconstrained growth than constraints on hunting.

Where just one, two and three years ago there were hills and canyons there are now earthmovers, and the shells of future homes. The children see a regal cat killed, the officials give their litany of excuses, the crush of humanity robs us of peace, and the society loses.

For Yorba Linda, maybe we need to take stock of our priorities. A wealthy community like ours ought to consider adding what little remains of our beautiful hills to the Chino Hills State Park. Most of us could afford to contribute to such a worthy cause.


Yorba Linda

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