Growing up in Aroostook County shaped my unwavering work ethic, respect for community and family and passion for stewardship of the natural environment and creatures in it. Being from “The County” made me care about things in a way people “from away” don’t quite understand.

I grew up with hunters – hard workers, respectful people, pillars of the community. Many of us will be voting “yes” on Question 1 in November to ban unfair and cruel practices, out of line with the respect for the outdoors that County folk hold dear.

There’s nothing “natural” about feeding bears barrels of junk food and teaching them to seek human food; nothing hardworking about using dogs and GPS to tree a bear; nothing respectful about letting an animal suffer for hours in a trap.

As hunters and nonhunters, as “County people,” let’s admit that hounding, baiting and trapping aren’t the “County” way of doing things.

Angela M. Bell

originally of Caribou