License to kill eagles should have provoked outrage

December 13, 2013 

Wind Energy Eagle Deaths

FILE - This April 18, 2013 file photo shows a golden eagle flying over a wind turbine on Duke energy's top of the world wind farm in Converse County Wyo. The Obama administration will allow companies to seek authorization to kill and harm bald and golden eagles for up to 30 years without penalty in an effort to balance some of the environmental trade-offs of green energy. The change, requested by the wind energy industry and officially revealed Friday, will provide legal protection for the lifespan of wind farms and other projects that obtain a permit and do everything possible to avoid killing the birds. Companies will also have to commit to take additional measures if they exceed their permit limits or if new information suggests eagle populations (AP Photo/Dina Cappiello, File)

DINA CAPPIELLO — AP

A 30-year license to kill eagles? Where is the outrage?

How can anything as appalling as this "license to kill" eagles and other birds be justified in the name of green energy?

Whether it's selective enforcement of immigration laws, IRS regulations, voting laws or waivers for Obamacare, here is yet another egregious example that equal protection under the law is being eroded for political and financial gain or as pay-back for political favors.

Last month, Duke Energy was fined the risible amount of $1 million in fines for violating the Migratory Bird Treaty Act by its killing of dozens of birds, including golden eagles. This pitiable fine can, however, be easily explained.

This company has supported the energy initiatives of President Obama and Congressional Democrats thereby receiving federal economic stimulus money and alternative energy grants, which in turn ensured that its financial future would be positively influenced by the environmental proposals the president's party vowed to pursue, and did. Other "green" companies similarly obtained generous government hand-outs and most of them failed miserably.

Duke Energy has now duly reaped its reward by the leniency of the fine imposed upon it by the Interior Department, essentially giving it carte blanche to massacre birds by the millions for the next 30 years -- a shock and huge disappointment for the environmentalists and wildlife organizations that have provided so much political support for this president.

Yet, where are the Greens, other than issuing short, weak-kneed policy statements on their web sites? PETA? Greenpeace? The silence is deafening.

Could we be honest about this? Had the Bush administration made the same decision, the media would be hyperventilating with 24/7 coverage; hunger-striking activists would be chaining themselves to windmill propellers and solar panels. Predictably, however, it's just another example of elective enforcement and selective righteousness.

Elfi Starrett

Bradenton

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