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Sarah Palin: ora è andata a infastidire gli orsi per il suo show tv

Sarah Palin, la star dei tea party, accusata di fare show mettendo a rischio le riserve. Per un programma tv che cura la Palin si è infatti fatta riprendere mentre nell’Alaska che ha eletto a domicilio pesca in faccia a poveri orsi bruni che la guardano interdetti. Lo show le è costato l’appellativo di “irresponsabile”. La corrispondenza del Guardian del 14.11.2010:

Sarah Palin accused of breaking countryside rules in TV nature show

The former Alaska governor was filmed fishing too close to protected bears, claims environmentalist

Leo Hickman and Joanna Walters, Sunday 14 November 2010 00.04 GMT

Article history

In her television show tonight, Sarah Palin casts herself as a can-do superwoman of the natural world. She fishes, hikes across glaciers and preaches “respect for the elements” from a speedboat while clad in a yellow cagoule. But the programme has already plunged the Mama Grizzly-in-chief into controversy after a leading conservationist in her adopted home of Alaska accused her of flagrant irresponsibility by fishing too close to protected brown bears.

John Toppenberg, director of the Alaska Wildlife Alliance, said scenes in an online trailer for the programme appeared to show the former Republican vice-presidential candidate breaking the rules of Wolverine Creek, a famous spot where bears – and humans – come to fish. “It’s clear from the video that she violated the guidelines,” he said, calling her actions “a travesty”.

In a preview of Sarah Palin’s Alaska, a part nature documentary, part candid camera of the daily life of one of America’s most controversial political families, the former state governor is seen fishing for salmon with husband Todd and family members. She can be seen apparently holding her rod towards brown bears on the river bank, while the party’s boat appears to be closer to the bears than guidelines advise. The Alaska department of fish and game says people in a boat must not fish within 30ft of a bear. “It’s clearly irresponsible,” said Toppenberg. “She is encouraging the violation of important guidelines. Humans can get too close to the bears.”

The irony of a right-wing conservative, who boasts of hunting moose and shooting wolves while campaigning for more oil drilling in Alaska, transforming herself into a nature fan for primetime has not been lost on environmentalists.

Large brown bears gather in Wolverine Creek because the fishing is so easy and the animals have, in the process, become a tourist spectacle. But Toppenberg warned that by behaving in an apparently irreverent manner, Palin was doing nothing to foster responsibility among visitors. “She is encouraging the violation of important guidelines that allows tourism to flourish in Alaska. She is inviting future problems with the tourism industry and, in particular, the bear-viewing industry,” he said.

More than two years after she was plucked by Republican presidential candidate John McCain to be his running mate in the 2008 election, Palin, 46, claims she will run for president in 2012 if “there’s no one else”. Meanwhile she has decided to put her family and her home state on show for the nation in Sarah Palin’s Alaska. But even a soft-focus programme becomes controversial when Palin is attached to it.

Joe Meehan, of the wildlife conservation division of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, said that it appeared that the Palins’ boat got within 30ft of the bears but not while they were actually feeding. “Some people may say you shouldn’t even try to fish when a bear is in the area and I wouldn’t argue with that,” he added.

Meehan, who supervises Alaska’s wildlife refuge programme, which includes Wolverine Creek, said that while he did not believe Palin had necessarily breached the guidelines, he had concerns over the signal she was sending. “Fishing in close proximity to bears may, in general, not send an appropriate message to large numbers of people that are not experienced at fishing in bear country,” he said.

The preview clip also shows a bear jumping into the river near the Palins. Palin recalls dramatically to camera later: “So I’m thinking we are going to get stuck there, the anchor is dropped and there is a bear coming towards us.”

But this enraged Toppenberg. “She implies that she is somehow in danger or being brave. That’s complete nonsense,” he said. “Wolverine Creek is the one place in Alaska where the bears are tolerant and completely habituated to the presence of people and boats. But the guidelines are there for a reason.”


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