What Sayeth The Wise Hunter To The Young Boy?
Boy: O Wise Hunter, how can I learn to respect animals and to respect life?
Hunter: Buy a rifle and get a hunting license. Then hunt the animals down and kill them.
Boy: And that will help me attain a respect for animals and for life?
Hunter: Yes, of course it will, boy. Plus, if you go hunting with your father or your grandfather, then you can really bond with them.
Boy: But couldn't I bond with them at a baseball game or at an amusement park?
Hunter: I guess so. But then you couldn't kill anything.
Boy: O Wise Hunter, what happens to some of the deer during the winter?
Hunter: Well, some of the weak ones starve to death. And that's a very cruel way to die. So - instead - hunters shoot some deer, cut off their heads for trophies, dismember their bodies and eat their flesh in order to save them from the cruelties.
Boy: But, uh, uh, how come hunters never shoot starving deer - only big, healthy ones?
Hunter: Uh, uh, uh, boy. Now you just keep quiet about that.
Boy: And another thing, Wise One, if hunters were really concerned about starving animals, wouldn't they feed them?
Hunter: Let me get this right, boy. You're saying that we should be feeding starving deer - instead of killing them? But…
Boy: Is it true, Wise Hunter, that deer-car accidents have more than tripled over the past 30 years?
Hunter: Well, uh, yeah.
Boy: But I thought hunters killed deer in order to reduce the herd so deer-car accidents would decrease.
Hunter: Well, uh, you sure ask a lot of questions, boy.
Boy: O Wise Hunter, how come the Department of Natural Resources always promotes the killing of animals?
Hunter: Well, just between you and me, the hunting community and the DNR are allies. You know, real good buddies.
Boy: You mean most of the people who work for the DNR - hunt?
Hunter: Yes, of course, boy. And those fees from the hunting licenses - around 90 percent of that money goes toward the hiring of DNR officers and the marketing of programs to recruit young people, like yourself, into the hunting community.
Boy: What about the commission that oversees the DNR in Michigan?
Hunter: You mean, the Natural Resources Commission?
Boy: Yes, Wise Hunter.
Hunter: Well, uh, eight of the nine commissioners 'live to hunt and hunt to live!'
Boy: Ohhh. You mean, people who hunt make decisions about the fate of wild animals?
Hunter: Now, now, boy. You just keep that bit of information to yourself.
Boy: Would hunters ever try to conserve some of the land if they couldn't hunt on it?
Hunter: Let me get this right, boy. You mean, we should just conserve some of the land and some of the animals that live on that land for the heck of it - with no killing. Uh, that would be a pretty kind gesture of humanity.
Boy: I know, Wise Hunter, I know.
Hunter: Well, uhhh…
Boy: O Wise Hunter, how can I help advance the, uh, sport of hunting?
Hunter: Tell people to have compassion for hunters.
Boy: You mean, tell people to have compassion for those who have no compassion?
Hunter: Yes, boy.
Boy: But, uh, wise hunter, these things you say make no sense.
Hunter: I know, boy, I know. But if we say these things enough, the public will eventually believe us and then they will make sense.
Originally published on Animal Rights Online.