"Voucher" specimen. A term used by biologists and other scientist to euphimistically disguise the act of intentionally killing an animal to satisfy the ego.
In this case, the term is used by Alton Higgens of the TBRC, along with the disingenuous statement: "It is not immoral, even if there are those who disagree for various emotional reasons." Higgens cites the use of collecting "voucher" specimens -- in other words, killing creatures to drag back to the lab -- to justify a Sasquatch kill.Higgens wrote:
Speaking now outside of my Chairman role, as a field biologist I have always indicated that I supported collecting a specimen for documentation and study, although I have not personally pursued that objective. I don’t think sasquatches are people. Biologists are trained to think in terms of, and to care about, populations. Collection of a voucher specimen is a way of protecting the population, from my perspective. It is not immoral, even if there are those who disagree for various emotional reasons. Since this would be a new species to science, there is little question but that a specimen is justifiable. Here’s a link to guidelines and policies that have been worked out in the scientific community regarding the collection of voucher specimens. (Source.)It is immoral.
The use of the word "emotional" is used to trivialize NO KILL supporters and activists and it's extremely condescending. Dismissing those who are avidly No Kill as mere "emotional" beings with no understanding of the clinical is dishonest, as is using euphemistic terms like "vouchers," citing scientific protocols to bolster justification, outline the TBRC policies on carrying guns, and being passive-aggressive about one's own part in killing, er, collecting, a Sasquatch, I mean voucher. (I also noticed the lower case use of "sasquatches" in the above quote, which is either a typo, or an intentional use to further distance oneself from seeing Sasquatch as a living being and both marginalize and underscore the idea that Sasquatch aren't "people."
Craig Wooheater, a co-founder of TBRC doesn't agree with the Kill/Capture platform either. This is what Craig recently posted on his Facebook page; it's been re-posted many times since throughout the Internet. Craig gave me permission to post his statement:
As the co-founder, former board member, former director and chairman of the TBRC, I feel it necessary to state my opinion regarding the shooting incident involving the organization.I cannot tell you how much I respect Craig for doing this.
The organization was formed as a strictly no-kill organization.
Myself, former member Gino Napoli and Daryl Colyer participated in a pro-kill versus no-kill debate held at Chester Moore's Southern Crypto Conference in 2005. We represented the no-kill position, which was hugely unpopular with the vast majority of the attendees.
I stepped down from the organization in July of 2010 and was given the title of Chairman Emeritus and Co-Founder.
In December of 2010, I began hearing rumors that there was a philosophical change brewing in at least several current TBRC board members.
I communicated with Alton Higgins, current chairman, regarding the rumors and he stated the TBRC's position was neutrality regarding pro-kill versus no-kill.
I felt that was not the case and I relinquished the honorary titles and asked that my name be removed in all instances from the website.
This was not an easy decision to make, taking into account the 11 years of dedication I had given to the organization.
After word came out regarding the shooting incident, my suspicions were verified and I knew I had made the correct decision.
- Craig Woolheater
This is an issue I feel so damn strongly about; it's not a mere disagreement on theory or speculations about what Sasquatch is, or isn't, or the "flesh and blood vs. paranormal" issue. (Although that does bring up interesting aspects that one should consider in all this.)
Some of the comments on the sites where the above articles have been posted (a few which are "anonymous" yet feel compelled to share their opinions, including name calling, while hiding behind the ubiquitous no name name) say that Sasquatch "aren't people." Higgens certainly has said so. Maybe they are, maybe they're not. I have not been honored to see a Sasquatch so I don't know. For many who have, they say it is indeed closer to human than not. For myself, it doesn't matter (well, it does, but...) if it's "people" or closer to a worm. Its intelligence level is not the criteria for making the decision to go out and kill one. Or, capture one for that matter.
Naturally, if Sasaquatch is "closer to people" than not, then yes, it'd be horrific to kill one. But it's also pretty damn horrible to kill one just because you can. (Although, have you noticed, no one has, thankfully.)
It's a living being minding its own business and we do not have the right to intrude upon its habitat and attempt to kill or capture, simply to satisfy our egos. It gets to that, and only that. Fuck science. We don't need to prove a damn thing. Witnesses who've seen Sasquatch know. The rest of us who haven't, well, too bad for us. Maybe we'll be blessed as well some day.