The inability to accept a truth that will not and cannot change in the foreseeable future (if ever), is creating a false sense of accomplishment inside advocacy. It's also wasting time, money, resources and good faith and synergy.
So let's just cut to the chase. There will always be parrots kept as companions. Always. There will always be breeders breeding poorly, or well. But make no mistake, there will always be breeders lining their pocketbooks, and feeding the lines of commerce to the kept companion parrot industry. Finally, there will always be poaching. Because there will always be governments corrupted or disinterested or driven to do nothing to create, support and protect renewable resource based economies. Wild life of all types suffer today as they have for thousands of years at the hands of greed and the result of greed put upon the less educated and empowered. The very last of it's kind rhino, ONE SINGLE example of it's own species, currently lives surrounded by armed guards 24/7. It will do so until it dies of natural causes, or when a group of poachers murder the guards and then that rhino. So instead of arguing facts that cannot change, due to the inability for governments and the people to understand the extreme needs to stop these practices; lets agree we have a different problem. It's more than just "parrots shouldn't be in cages". "Parrots are bad pets". "Breeders are bad", and "Poachers should be executed" or any version thereof. It's a clear problem. It's not complicated. If we join together in this advocacy at this starting point, the very success of fixing this stated clear problem will do more to change those big immovable big issues, than any petition signed online, any arguement or course word written or spoken, or any amount of hate delivered to the prescribed "bad guy" in the room.
The problem is simple; Companion Parrots are not pets. Companion Parrots are intelligent, self-aware, highly social animals that can form relationships within a redefined flock to include humans, IF the human in the room acknowledges the parrot as a companion and NOT property or pet. Because if we all agree to those terms, less people will want a "pet parrot", less inappropriate sales and marketing of big box pet stores will support a "pet parrot" industry and a mindset will be recreated in this empathy based fabric of perception for companion parrots.
As an advocate, a simple advocate that wants a simple thing, this is the only message I will fight for at this time. The Art of War states clearly all battles are won before they are started. You pick the field, you pick the time, you pick the war cry for a very specific reason and very specific result. And then you make your battle plans.
Ranting against breeding gets nothing done. Angry rants, posting horrid photos and the like feels like something is getting done, but it's not. It is only raising emotions to a fevered pitch. It does nothing to create, propose and initiate solutions that give breeders a better way of making a living. Because that is what breeders do, they make a living, on breeding pet parrots. Now, if we create options for breeders to switch out of breeding and into, say, rescue/sanctuary work what then? Why can't we do that? There is no reason why we can not. I have ideas. They could work if we spent more time talking about solutions than arguing over the unchangeable landscapes we live in. Rescues as a business model started in this mindset of non profit. I know many a non profit that do just fine on their profitability, sustainability and flexability inside that Tax Category. Yet, I don't know many parrot rescues that do. I think it's because most are born from a single heart aching to just start fixing things, at home. And the need is so great that their offer for rescue and sanctuary literally pulls in a tidal wave of parrots. A problem arises. Without a business plan or model, you just can't grow a business safely. And so growth is rocky, scary, skin-of-the-teeth and they find a normal in that abnormal business model. I admire every rescue that does the good work, I appreciate those hearts and I know the personal sacrifice and yes, losses, they all deal with every day. It's time we change these business models, practices and perceptions to an elevated more poweful forward moving advocacy. Companion Parrot Advocacy can continue to limp along, or it can start running smoothly. But arguing and fighting on the wrong battlefields with the wrong battle plans isn't going to get any of us anywhere. And it certainly isn't going to improve the companion parrots place in this Human Dimension.
I'm tired of articles talking about how bad companion parrots are as pets, how they should never be caged, that keeping wild parrots is wrong and so on. These are knowns. These are emotionally charged, already agreed upon knowns. And at the end of these diatribes the authors normally admit that it's here to stay in some form or fashion. No solutions. No caveats. No ideas. No support. No forward movement. Just points of contention listed numerically leaving no egress to steps of solution. It would be better if those who write these articles didn't write a word at all. Better to say nothing and cause no harm than than write on about emotionally charged already known issues, while posting supporting horrible photos generating anger and hate, with NO SUGGESTIONS for solutions, invitations to work together for a clear answer or attempt to clearly FIX THESE PROBLEMS inside the real world.
The biggest changes cost no money whatsoever. It costs nothing to help someone with a companion parrot issue. I have a secret past time, I love doing it. I search for parrots for sale on my local craigslist. I reach out and ask why they are selling their parrot and start conversations with the owners. I've been able to rehabilitate a dozen flocks with this time investment. I have turned owners into parents, and parrots for sale to companion parrots staying home. This costs nothing but time.
It seems I have about 2200 followers or at least "likes" to flockcall Facebook. Birds of a feather if you will. If we all gave $10 a month to the work of rescue that would be 22,000 a month. How MUCH good could come of that? What could be built? Who could be saved? How many parrots could be rescued?
If each of the FlockCall family reached out to ONE flock a month in need of guidance, assistance or rescue just once a month that is 2200 companion parrots assisted every month. That is a battlefield full of warriors with a plan. Anger, arrogance, vitriol, and the like will get trampled and synergy will give birth to more idea makers.
2015 and 2016 are going to be exciting years for the FlockCall Family. I'm building battlefields, I'm building battle plans and I'm building bridges between warriors because when you help a flock, you are also helping the human in the room. And it's the human in the room that needs to be active on this battlefield. I lead by example. I work every day somewhere some way, for every parrot everywhere to have a happy home. Flockcall.com and it's supporting social media outlets aren't even the tip of my spear.
I have more spears if anyone wants one.