(Editor’s note: Subsequent research by the Sun Journal identified several inaccuracies in this letter, which was based on an inaccurate article in the Washington Examiner.  Mainers for Fair Bear Hunting has received 93 percent of its funding from the Humane Society of the United States.

However, the HSUS never sued Feld Entertainment. It did become, along with several other animal organizations, defendant in a lawsuit filed by Feld Entertainment. That long-running suit ended with the HSUS and other organizations agreeing to pay $16 million in damages to the circus operator and elephant owner.

Attorney Katherine Meyer was sanctioned and fined for her role in a suit filed by elephant-trainer turned elephant-rights activist Tom Rider against his former employer, Feld Entertainment. That suit was dismissed when it was revealed that Rider had been paid by the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals to participate in the suit. Meyer was not an attorney for the HSUS.)

Mainers for Fair Bear Hunting is an organization mainly funded by the Humane Society of the United States. According to an article in the Washington Examiner in July, HSUS sued Feld Entertainment (owner of The Greatest Show On Earth). The star witness, Tom Rider, was exposed as a paid witness receiving $190,000.

U.S. District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan said the lawsuit was “groundless and unreasonable from its inception.” He also sanctioned HSUS attorney Katherine Meyer for “bad faith misconduct with deliberate intent to harm.”

The HSUS and other animal rights groups repaid Feld Entertainment $15.7 million for Feld’s attorney fees. As a result, Charity Navigator posted a donor advisory about HSUS.


In my opinion, the bear-baiting referendum is very similar to the HSUS-Feld lawsuit.

First, MFFBH is like the paid witness (as was Tom Rider). They are provided with propaganda and cash to spread foolish misinformation.

Second, the citizens of Maine are as Judge Sullivan. If all citizens had true knowledge of bears, they would find the referendum “groundless and unreasonable … with deliberate intent to harm,” as he did.

I think the MFFBH are under the misconception that their mission is to stop so-called unfair bear hunting. Truth is, they are out to accomplish, for the HSUS, the first step of ending all hunting, everywhere.

Think about it … as long as people use weapons to hunt, be it rifle or slingshot, it will always be seen as unfair in the eyes of the anti-hunter.

I will vote no on Question One.

Pete McKeown, Turner

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