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C.A.S.H. Letters to the Editor > 2006

C.A.S.H. Letters

Chaney's Hunting Accident

Dick Cheney should be congratulated for making headlines of our point that hunting isn’t safe. We all know that hunting isn’t safe for animals, but our statements that hunting isn’t safe for people have fallen on deaf ears.

Of course the hunt facility and the White House are reporting that no one should worry, the accident was minor and Harry Whittington’s just fine, thank you. But a Corpus Christi newspaper reported that Harry spent a night or two in intensive care in a hospital before being transferred to their trauma center. The doctors said that removing the lead shot that “peppered” his face, neck and chest could be more hazardous than leaving it. How frustrating it must be for this obviously successful lawyer that he cannot, if he wishes to stay in the good graces of the Bush administration, even bring a lawsuit for so much bodily harm.

Privilege has its advantages. Cheney gets to shoot someone, albeit accidentally, and the only consequences are a few lousy jokes made at his “expense,” so to speak. The consequences to others are far more serious. Now a man will live with leadshot in his body, “upland game birds” are living, dying, or dead with leadshot in them, raptors and carrion feeders have ingested or will ingest lead on the far from pristine property that is a hunt site for the rich.

One of the most galling aspects is realizing who paid for Cheney’s pleasure trip to kill birds. You got it, you and I did. What surfaced during his latest hunting trip was that Cheney travels with a medical team and no doubt a slew of bodyguards, and at least to one hunting destination, he arrived in grand style on Air Force Two. On December 9, 2003, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported:

“For the second time in two years, Vice President Dick Cheney arrived at daybreak at Arnold Palmer Airport in Latrobe. Air traffic was halted briefly at about 7 a.m. as Air Force Two landed and Cheney's security detail loaded him and his favorite shotgun into a Humvee and drove up U.S. Route 30 to the exclusive country club.” Do we also pay his fees to the hunt facility?

On October 30 2001, just days following 9/11 when we thought Cheney was attending to the nation’s serious business, the Poughkeepsie Journal [New York] reported:

''Yes, the vice president was in the Town of Poughkeepsie… Several residents complained about the traffic local roads created when several were closed for security Sunday…Monday the vice president was at the rod and gun Club on Clove Mountain Road for several hours. It wasn't clear what Cheney was hunting for; hunters at the private club generally shoot pheasant and ducks…there were at least a half-dozen New York State Police cars, an ambulance and several black vans or sport utility vehicles, some with license plates from the State of Maryland. Men inside the vehicles wore jackets with an American flag on the sleeve and the words ''Secret Service'' on the breast. Others wore high-laced boots and black clothing, with the words ''Police Secret Service'' on the back…By mid-afternoon, the echo of gunshots could be heard in the distance.

The Union Vale Fire Department's Clove Station and the ambulance crew, which is down the road from the gun club, were on standby Sunday and Monday. ''We made sure we had enough people on to cover our equipment,'' Assistant Fire Chief Loren Pickney said. They were not called on. The closest the volunteers got to the vice president was watching his motorcade drive by. ''It was an easy detail,'' Pickney said.

I suppose that with a national debt sloshing over eight trillion dollars, Cheney’s contribution to it seems like a drop in the bucket, but I still think that this man’s obvious addiction to hunting is far too costly for the American public. (www.all-creatures.org/cash)

Anne Muller
Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting
New Paltz, NY 12561
845-256-1400

 

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C.A.S.H.
PO Box 562 New Paltz, NY 12561
Phone 845-256-1400 Fax 845-818-3622
E-mail: cash@cashwildwatch.org
Anne Muller - President

 

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