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CASH Courier > 2005 Fall Issue

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The C.A.S.H. Courier

ARTICLE from the Fall 2005 Issue

MISGUIDED PHILANTHROPY

This was written in response to an article that appeared in the Sacramento Bee on September 2, 2005, entitled: “Yolo Resident Uses His Land to Help Kids Hunt”

BY MARILYN JASPER

A landowner in Winters, California, has opened up his 1,440 acres to hunting in a misguided attempt to “help kids.” Good intentions are admirable, but outcomes are another story.

According to a recent newspaper article, the owner, a Brian Stucker, claims his own introduction to duck hunting inspired a love of nature, so he wants to do something nice for hunting. He has built ponds, which attract unsuspecting deer, and decided to allow hunting for kids. Although the connection between loving nature, building attractions for animals, and then having kids kill them remains unclear, there is a much more ominous aspect to this story.

Teaching kids to kill innocent animals instills a lack of respect for nature. In fact, it reinforces a dominance approach to life. If only he had provided a place for kids to hunt with a camera or binoculars, to experience nature as it is, and to leave it that way for the benefit of all, his efforts would be applauded. Instead, he is instilling a sense that animals are disposable for human recreational activities as well as reinforcing a disrespect for life itself.

The mentality that supports hunting grabs at many straws to validate the killing of other sentient beings. They claim they are culling out the weak, strengthening the species by reducing overpopulation that leads to disease. Are they always assured of killing the weakest or the sickest? Do we have any scientific studies that prove indiscriminate hunting has “healed” a sick population?

The buck with the biggest rack is probably genetically the best specimen for a herd’s continued survival, yet he will be the most sought after target.

To try to understand the workings of the mind of a hunter is to try to understand the mind of a killer. There may not be a pathology per se (although that is certainly the case in some instances), but very likely there is a huge disconnect between the act of killing, of pulling the trigger or releasing the arrow, and the actual consequences.

There is a very similar disconnect between other reckless behaviors, until there is an accident, and then, possibly, there may be a subsequent awakening.

Fortunately, many former hunters are waking up, as indicated by the decline in the issuance of hunting licenses.

Meanwhile, in deep denial, the hunting industry frantically recruits women and children, and attempts to make hunting the new family get together. Do not be surprised by “The family that hunts together stays together” slogans. Until the wake up is more profound, animals will continue to suffer.

To contact Marilyn Jasper, please e-mail her at mjasper@accessbee.com 

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