Op-Ed: Fed Up With Anti-Hunters

If the only information the majority of non-hunters receive puts hunters and hunting in a bad light, it will be easy for the unassuming public to play along with the antis. If that happens, we lose and hunting ends. It’s that simple.

Op-Ed: Fed Up With Anti-Hunters

If the only information the majority of folks, including non-hunters, receive puts hunters and hunting in a bad light, it will be easy for the unassuming to play along with the antis. 

The antis (anti-hunters, anti-gun folks, you name it) hate us, want to put us out of business and gladly will align with anyone or anything that they think will hurt us in one way or another.

The antis can’t stand who we are, what we do or what we stand for. Until that reality strikes home with every right-thinking American, we’ve got trouble.

The antis are both overt and covert. Sometimes they conduct frontal attacks, while other times they sneak behind the scenes to do their dirty work. They help disseminate partial truths and lies created by other groups that they feel furthers their agenda.

Already they have attacked the hunting of bobcats, mountain lions, black and grizzly bears. They don’t hesitate to go the government agencies at the state and federal levels, just as they don’t hesitate to take legal action in the form of lawsuits — all to end hunting.

It’s no secret that the antis are out to do away with any kind of organized predator hunting. They have been behind the introduction of a number of measures in various states to put an end to what they call “contests.”

Why do they go out of their way to stress the term “contest?” Because they’ve done their homework. They know that most people in the country do not hunt, but that the same group for the most part also has nothing against hunting for food.

That’s why a news item that popped up recently caught my eye. Ostensibly the piece was about birds of prey that allegedly were getting sick from eating carcasses of animals that had been shot with bullets that contained lead.

On the surface, such a report might look like nothing more than just a re-hash of the lies and partial truths that were spread around when the antis wanted to outlaw the use of lead shot for waterfowling decades ago.

But the article went way beyond that, getting into the whole conversation about how humans also are threatened if they eat the meat from animals that are shot with bullets containing lead.

Not surprisingly, the article was not written by an anti and it was quite well balanced in overall coverage. This makes it potentially even more damaging because it contains truths and common sense along with the wrong messages.

 “It’s widely reported that there’s no evidence of lead poisoning to people who consume wild game killed by lead shot or bullets,” the article in the Wyoming Business Report stated. 

Okay, doesn’t that seal the deal that there is no problem? Hardly. In the same paragraph, it continued: “The toxin has the same effect on humans as it does on wildlife, however, leading some health experts to recommend certain vulnerable people like children avoid eating game killed with lead bullets.”

Wow! Even though the article states that it is widely reported that there is no evidence of lead poisoning to people, it goes right ahead and talks about a “toxin” that can harm vulnerable people like children.

And then, the article continues: “The U.S. has taken the lead out of gasoline and paint. Hunters can’t use lead shot to shoot waterfowl and Yellowstone National Park banned the use of lead in most fishing tackle. The U.S. military has developed and adopted a lead-free round.” I guess the military doesn’t want the enemy to get lead poisoning?

In the propaganda world, this is common — create the allusion that “everybody’s doing it, so it must be okay” when it comes to banning lead.

The intended audience is not comprised of hunters. The intended audience is comprised of non-hunters who otherwise wouldn’t think about hunting, especially predator hunting, one way or another.

Yet the propaganda value of such missives, whether intentional or accidental, is to create even the slightest doubt in the minds of the misinformed or under-informed that it isn’t safe to eat the meat from animals that are shot with lead bullets.

What happens as such a message circulates is that it morphs. Quickly, some folks start to believe that all meat from wild animals is dangerous, etc., because the two things they remember are game meat and getting sick.

The reason that creating such a mindset is so important to the antis, who then use such reporting to argue their case, is that it lays the foundation for other unfounded arguments they know they will want to be making in the future.

They know that if a significant portion of the population believes that game meat is unsafe, then those people will have no problem also believing that there is nothing wrong with ending hunting — after all, if it serves no purpose like providing good food, then why kill the animals?

Think of it this way. The entire situation surrounding lead and hunting is extremely complex and there is probably much more about it that is unknown than there is that is known. This opens the door to unfounded claims that, for the most part, go unchallenged.

And when these unfounded claims are repeated often enough and through enough channels, folks begin to take them as truths.

That’s why it is so important for all predator hunters to take everything that is said about hunters and hunting seriously. It is easy to scoff at some item of misinformation or even fake news and chuckle that we know it isn’t true.

But that doesn’t help hunting at all. The antis don’t try to change our minds because they know they can’t — we know the facts and stand by the truth.

However, the antis also know that most people don’t know the truth about hunting, and they don’t really care enough to research the situation.

What this means is that those non-hunters can easily be tricked into believing lies, which makes it easier for them to align with the antis, even though they may not know they are making such an alignment when they do it.

There are those who think discussions like this are “alarmist.” Okay, if they wake folks up and cause them to take action, then being alarmist is a good thing.

One thing is certain. If the only information the majority of folks (non-hunters) receive puts hunters and hunting in a bad light, it will be very easy for the unassuming non-hunters to play along with the antis.

If that happens, we lose and hunting ends. It’s that simple and they really are out to get us.


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