Bill Maher Challenges Cornell Over Deer Hunting

Honorary PETA Director Urges Alma Mater to Stop Allowing Bowhunters Into Wildlife 'Sanctuary'

For Immediate Release:
October 29, 2018

Contact:
Moira Colley 202-483-7382

Ithaca, N.Y. – Cornell University alumnus Bill Maher has sent a letter to his alma mater opposing the deer hunt that the school is allowing in Sapsucker Woods, its 226-acre wildlife “sanctuary.”

“What dictionary does Cornell use?” Maher writes. “I ask because when I was an undergrad there, ‘sanctuary’ meant ‘a place of refuge or safety.’ Apparently, someone’s using another definition, one that says giving bowhunters carte blanche to snuff out deer in Sapsucker Woods Sanctuary is OK. It’s not.” He goes on to point out that for every deer killed by a bowhunter, at least one other is shot but escapes, and many of these animals will endure slow, lingering deaths after weeks of suffering.

PETA’s motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way.” For more information, please visit PETA.org.

Bill Maher’s letter to Cornell University President Dr. Martha E. Pollack follows.

Martha E. Pollack, Ph.D.

President

Cornell University

Dear Dr. Pollack,

What dictionary does Cornell use? I ask because when I was an undergrad there, “sanctuary” meant “a place of refuge or safety.” Apparently, someone’s using another definition, one that says giving bowhunters carte blanche to snuff out deer in Sapsucker Woods Sanctuary is OK.

It’s not. These gentle animals don’t ask for much—they just want to be left in peace to raise their families. Do you know that fawns stay by their mothers’ sides for up to two years? I’m not surprised that bowhunters don’t care if they destroy these families—however, that Cornell doesn’t care is hard to swallow. So is this: I’ve learned from my friends at PETA that for every deer killed by a bowhunter, at least one other is shot but escapes. It can be weeks before some die. Weeks, Dr. Pollack.

Please don’t tell me that killing deer is necessary in order to control their numbers. For how many years have bowhunters been given a free pass? I didn’t study wildlife management during my time at Cornell, but I don’t need a degree in it to know that if this misguided program actually worked, deer wouldn’t be in Sapsucker Woods again.

Here’s another thing I’ve learned: Installing fencing, using repellants like pepper spray, and administering contraceptive vaccines keep deer populations in check humanely. In my book, that’s effective management.

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,

Bill Maher

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