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I posted up this article about a year ago or so and thought I would post it up again.

From: Field and Stream, February 2007 Volume CXI Number 9
A Sportsman's Life by Bill Heavey

MORONS AMONG US
How we are helping the Antis

Ever wonder why so many folks have a less-than flattering image of Hunters? Let me explain it to you: There be morons among us. What's worse, the rest of us generally tolerate them. So if the antis ever succeed in banning hunting, it will be thanks to our generous support. We don't send them money, of course. But make no mistake: We contribute to their cause.

Imagine yourself a newly minted strategist working for an anti-hunting group. Within half an hour of starting your job, you'd be rubbing your hands with glee and telling your superiors, "These guys are a dream come true. We don't even have to think up ways to portray them as Neanderthals who are just after the thrill of the Kill. They're already doing that for us!"

Visit enough hunting chat rooms and you'll see how. I found one in which a hunter was complaining that the buck he'd shot had died before he could taunt it with a dance he'd choreographed specially for the occasion. "I'm really into sports, "the guy wrote. "I based my dance on some of Terrell Owens' moves after he scores a touchdown. It's this really in-your-face, I-own you sort of deal. I worked pretty hard on all the moves, and I thought it would be cool for it to be the last thing some deer saw, knowing that I'd beaten it. I've done it for my friends at a bar, and they all thought it was hilarious. I'm hoping next year I get to do it for real." As sportsmen, I'm sure we can all share his frustration at a game animal that has the nerve to expire before a guy gets his chance to humiliate it. And it sure would be nice to meet his buddies.

On another site, a bow hunter wrote that he had always wanted to take a deer with a brain shot through the ear and that he had been waiting for just the right opportunity. His patience payed off, and everyone in the chat room was treated to a photo of what looked to be a yearling doe with a shaft angling out of the right side of her head. Forget that such a tiny target makes this an ethically indefensible shot. Forget that it shows no respect for the life of the animal. Forget - if you can - the grisly image itself, which brings to mind Saddam's torture-loving sons. No, the important thing here is that this hunter's wish to kill in a novel and satisfying (for him at least) way was fulfilled.

There are unethical slobs in any sport, of course. And it's unfair to tar a whole group because of a few bad apples. But in both cases, these posts were met by a resounding absence of anger or censure. In fact, some who responded were admiring, even sympathetic.

Am I missing something? Are we hunters now convinced that the only thing that matters in the debate over our sport is numbers - so much so that we welcome anybody who hunts, no matter how twisted, into our ranks?

I hesitate to saddle up my high horse here, yet this stuff both scares and sickens me. We would do well to remember a few facts: Hunters are a minority in our country. There are a lot of people who want to abolish hunting. There are probably even more who are still forming opinions on the matter. The future of hunting depends on the actions of hunters and nonhunters alike. If we don't police the morons and slobs ourselves, we invite outsiders to step in and do it. I'm guilty myself. I was so distressed by what I saw online that I just walked away from my computer at the time.

Politics aside, there is something about crude behavior in a hunter that is not just offensive; it also eats at the soul of any true outdoorsman. These guys are cheapening something we love, something sacred. The longer I hunt, the more humbling I find the experience. Each time I walk into the woods with my bow, I rediscover how infinite nature is and how transitory and small I am. My carefully maintained suburban identity falls away like a dry husk. I become more alert. My consciousness opens up. I am focused, aware, alive. I am hunting.

Everything around me comes alive , too: the earth beneath my feet, the water in a brook, every leaf on every tree. The slightest tremor in the air is like the blast of a trumpet; the squawk of a distant wood pecker, a siren. Each step cracks open a new world. I am seeking an animal whose knowledge of this place is greater than mine will ever be. I come in humility precisely because no one is watching me, because I alone must live with the consequences of my actions here. Should I be granted a killing shot on a buck, I will kill. This is the confirmation of the hunt, the thing that makes being here so elemental and important. What I love beyond all reckoning, beyond my ability to explain even to myself, is the felling of being more intensely alive than I've ever been.

As for the next moron hunter I bump into, fair warning: The gloves are off.
 

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Amen,amen.Go to almost any hunting site and read and look=plenty of ammo for antis.
Clean up or perish and few realize it can and likely will happen.Too many that frequent these sites are in stage one or two of 'hunter development'and don't realize what they are doing.
Overall trappers have 'learned'and fought hard and wisely to hang on,barely,and hunters better wake up soon.
 

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good post...... but you have a strange tag line on the bottom for anyone concerned with hunters image???
 

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Exactly. I actually read the article in the field and stream, nodding my head the whole time i read it.
 

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Another one of the detriments of the commercialization of hunting. To many it's not about 1on1 with the game it's about impressing their buddies/peers. Taunting his game? Quite frankly when that guys is lying in bed dieing I hope his relatives are jumping up and down in front of him cheering on his death.

As a matter of fact it exists right here on this sight. I get sick to my stomach when I hear about "team killem till their dead" or something similar. It gives us all a bad image. Think about it. The vision in the anti's mind is now "its bad enough that they kill animals, now they team up to do it" ! I guess it make some guys feel important.

"Uncle Ted" is another fine example. While he talks big about respecting game his actions often seem to present another image.
 

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I also couldn't agree more with this article! It was just last week that I came to work. The guy that I work with came in and said that he went hunting that weekend with his buddies. I asked how they did. His response... he shot 9 himself, his buddy shot 7, and the third guy shot 8. Then he proceeded to tell me none of them had licenses, and they took the plugs out of their guns so they had five shots each. It's not taunting their game, but it's just as bad to hunt illegally, shoot way over limit, and be proud of it. :eyeroll: I believe that a lot of the hunters out there do follow the rules and regulations, and unfortunately for us, there are those bad apples that get pointed out first... kind of like politics. All you ever see are the horrible images of the war, etc. But you really don't ever hear of the good that happens. I hope that young hunters have good role models with good morals and values so that the generations to follow can help to create a positive image about hunters.
 

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Sports are all about numbers, you get big numbers you must feel like a winner or something I guess. I have been warning you sporters for 5 years now you will end hunting for all of us. Sports come in three packages amateur, school and professional.

I was proud of Chris Hustad and a few others who were kind enough to call Mr. Dean Hildebrand an outdoorsman. May his soul rest in peace.
 

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I don't know if it's birthdays (old age), wisdom, maturity, or what, but the more I hunt, the more it is just about being there with your friends and family and enjoying the time. Any game taken is a bonus. I, and most on here were all about the kill and the numbers when we first started as well so I cannot fault anyone. I can, however, encourage all to just enjoy the time spent outdoors, don't worry so much about limiting or the largest horns. As a famous company has said.......Just do it!!!!!
 

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Field Hunter said:
Did you call the game warden?
I thought that you had to actually catch them doing it, or get a picture or something... What would I do to prove that they were hunting illegally? They wouldn't just take my word for it. I would love to do something about it though, if you had any ideas.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Bobm said:
good post...... but you have a strange tag line on the bottom for anyone concerned with hunters image???
Come on Bob that's not strange at all. I really do hear voices in my head. Voices saying "get your big butt out of bed and check your traps" or "get out of the truck and go down to the bottom of that steep ravine through all of those sand burrs and set some more traps". One voice though always starts in towards the end of the season while I'm sleeping. It sounds very similar to my wife's voice and it keeps saying "give me your fur check, give me your fur check". Don't know what to make of that one.
 

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Very good article. I hope it opens the eyes of a lot of people out there that are looking to impress peers with there accomplishments, or those that don't realize the real reason they are out there. Since the age of 8 I have had a connection to the outdoors. I spent hours opun hours learning game and how to identify sign. As well as the little things, the sounds the sights the plant life. Young hunters need to see and learn these things first before they even carry a firearm. There is much more to it then what a lot of other people see. You need to feel the thrill of the chase as well as the sadness of the death when you harvest any animal. Show it the utmost respect and realize what this animal means to you and what it has went through in its live. If you overlook these things then maybe you should ask yourself whether you are a true hunter and outdoorsman. At the age of 26 I have many years ahead of me, and I hope I can help the younger generations fully enjoy the outdoors.
 
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