Hunting Good or Bad?

Nov 14, 2004

The Bottom Line Be open minded and educate yourself

It depends if you live in Los Angeles or Alaska. It depends on how and where you were brought up. It depends on your culture. It depends on many things. Is hunting good or bad? The question is entirely too broad. People have been hunting and fishing since time began. It was, and still remains a mainstay for providing food for many more people than most people realize. Killing is the issue for most suburbanites who despise the thought of it, while they throw a Stouffer’s sliced turkey dinner in the microwave. Every piece of meat that society eats is killed in some fashion or another.

Cattle, lambs, hogs, chickens, turkeys, and tuna fish and on, and on… Now If I have the knowledge and effort to go out and get a deer to provide food for my family, I am a blood thirsty monger? The notion is just silly. Just because people don’t have to see the slaughter houses, (that produce the millions of tons of meat that we eat) they get on some soap box, they have become bloodless.

Many people in the North –West, Alaska and other parts of the country hunt for food and nothing more. Then there are the yahoo’s on cable TV who hunt for sport and nothing more. They get money and sponsors and have turned a means of providing food in to a sport. Now more and more people who have no understanding of the culture or way of life are on a crusade to stop hunting and a way of life. I believe that this country is still free and I should be allowed to hunt or fish, if I choose to. As it is, I have to pay all sorts of State imposed taxes and fee’s in order to hunt. Just because people do not agree or understand something as broad as hunting, does not mean it’s wrong and should be stopped. I don’t agree with a lot of things going on these days but does that mean that they are wrong and I am right?

Everything has become commercialized and our society has become bloodless. You can have sausage, eggs and potatoes for breakfast, a hamburger for lunch and a nice juicy steak for diner every day in America without ever having seen an animal slain in your life. War has even become bloodless. You can wage wars these days from the other side of the world and decimate a rival country without ever having blood on your hands. It must be nice to be a General sitting in Florida playing war.

Society has become that General when it comes to eating meat. They want the finished product wrapped in plastic and Styrofoam down at the supermarket. They do not want to think about what it took to get the meat to the market. Not only that, they stereotype the hunter as a redneck, bloodthirsty moron. I fear that this mentality will end hunting sometime in the near future. Hunting is slowly being taken away. They started by outlawing teeth on traps. So trappers could not use traps with teeth. Then they outlawed hunting bear, cougars or anything with dogs in most states. Then they outlawed certain types of guns. A lot of people would like to outlaw guns and hunting.

Have you ever been face to face with a cougar, a bear or a wolf? I have, it’s raw nature and survival. When I was a boy we had a small ranch in the mountains. Trappers had been outlawed so Coyotes and cougars were running a muck and killing our livestock. As the cougar population grew the deer population dwindled. One cougar will kill many deer in order to survive. Cougars are hell on livestock. They are nearly imposable to hunt with out dogs or traps. We just had to deal with it. A pack of wolves in Alaska snatched a small boy from our logging camp near Yakutat one year. Luckily he was found before the wolves dragged him too far. I am not sure if the boy survived or not. He was flown to Anchorage with a severed spine… On the same job in Alaska several timber faller were chased around the woods by bears. I found it funny at the time but when are face to face with a bear it’s very humbling! Now cougars are coming closer and closer to towns and kids are being attacked. Bears have become more of a nuisance than anything else. It is common to see black bears going through dumpsters.

I am not saying that these animals should be hunted and killed. I do not believe in hunting for sport. I only kill one creature that I don’t eat and that’s a rattle snake. I kill snakes around the house because I don’t want my kids being bit by a snake. The thought scares me. I don’t eat them because they are too boney and there’s not much meat. All I hunt anymore is deer once a year for additional food. My friends, family and I get together once a year and hunt. It’s a very big deal to the family, it’s a tradition. We hunt, camp and have a great time. These hunts provide cut wrapped meat for our freezers, just like you buy at the supermarket.

Thanks for reading my hunting rant,

@2004 Joe McMaster

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