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This Bear Picture Not for the Family

November 17, 1990

In 30 years of reading The Times, I have never seen anything more grotesque, tragic or contemptible than the Nov. 14 article and photos of a black bear hunt in Mariposa County. The look of sheer terror on the face of a female on death's door was nightmarish.

What possesses otherwise normal men to chase a bear into a cave, set a fire to flush it out and to shoot the poor thing at point-blank range? Is there pleasure in this? Was the bear a threat to a golf course or townhouse community somewhere?

Something good may come of this. If enough Californians see that haunting photo, the votes may develop to end the practice once and for all. If so, at least this animal's death wouldn't be just another memento to ego and blood lust.

DAVID LUKEN

Kensington, Md.

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