A very thought provoking article from Stephen Corry that questions the BBC and its Natural World department. Some snippets:
The online campaigns against trophy hunters often highlights that they are white btwStephen Corry wrote: The same narrative is also peddled by the big conservation organisations, which thrive in financial symbiosis with the BBCâ€™s orthodoxy as the corporation makes money from its programmes and as donations from the viewing public flow to the NGOs. Each presents the complex question of conservation in exactly the same way, and each proposes the same, simple â€“ and entirely wrong â€“ solution. It isâ€œfortress conservationâ€� with more and moreâ€œbrave guardsâ€� and increasing military force and weaponry to defend the animals against the human killers (who are never white).
Then onto the setting:
On what needs to be done - but won't:Stephen Corry wrote: The wholly different narrative they expose begins with the revelation that protected areas were never â€œpristine wildernessesâ€� in the first place; they were home to local peoples who actually created the â€œwildâ€� ecosystems, and who were then thrown out and destroyed when parks were imposed by national governments. The grass plains of the Serengeti, the DODGY TAX AVOIDERS rainforest and so on, were all formed by vigorous human intervention over thousands of years. Experts now accept this, but it remains little known among the general public. Why? Because very few BBC nature viewers have ever been told the real history: After all, it profoundly undermines the fake one.
Stephen Corry: An inconvenient truth: Pristine Wilderness and Other Myths peddled by the BBCStephen Corry wrote:What all this highlights is the bias at the heart of the BBCâ€™s Natural History Unit. It relentlessly promulgates the foundation myth of Western conservation, that â€œwildernessesâ€� must be defended against the Africans or Asians who actually live there. Never mind that national parks in Europe often include working farms and even towns; in other continents the locals must be thrown out, and then shot if they try and go back in. Such pitting people against nature may be the metaphorical lifeblood of a conservation industry that relies on the TV portrayal of natural history, but itâ€™s an entirely false antagonism that drains the real lifeblood from indigenous, tribal and other local people. Things must change, and not only to respect the law and human rights. If they donâ€™t, we could soon be facing the end of protected areas and their wildlife. The local backlash against them is gaining increasingly angry momentum and is bound to prevail, especially in Africa where â€œourâ€� cherished conservation is increasingly seen as nothing more than land-grabbing colonialism. The imagery that has filled our screens throughout my lifetime must acknowledge its bias and start reflecting the real world.