The Sierra Club Chooses Killers over Advocates for Life and Nature

http://aella.org/2011/05/the-sierra-club-chooses-killers-over-advocates-for-life-and-nature-by-paul-watson/

May 20, 2011

 By Paul Watson

[Translate]


On April 21st, 2006, Captain Paul Watson, founder of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, commemorated John Muir’s 168th birthday by saluting Muir’s anti-hunting philosophy in an article that accompanied his resignation as Sierra Club National Director, only a few days prior. We have decided to reawaken Paul’s article, as we feel that it is a profound piece, which echoes the feelings of many environmental, conservation and animal rights activists, alike. Thank you for allowing us to post this. Please click on Paul’s photo above to visit the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society’s website. In Unity…

The Sierra Club Chooses Killers over Advocates for Life and Nature By Paul Watson

My resignation from the Sierra Club received more letters of support for condemning hunting than criticisms and this was to be expected considering that more than 80% of Sierra Club members do not hunt.

Of the few who were critical of my anti-hunting position, they reportedly took offense to my remarks as being anti-hunting(of course they were) and they insisted that hunters were a strong conservation lobby and thus essential to protecting wildlife and wildlife habitats.

I probably should have been more definitive of my position. Instead of stating that I was anti-hunting or opposed to hunters, I should have said that I am anti-killing and opposed to killers.

The choice is really between endorsing the infliction of pain, suffering and death or opposing the infliction of pain, suffering and death.

Pro-killers will say that those people like me who are opposed to killing are alienated urbanities, of the privileged class, and insensitive to the traditional rationale that supports hunting.

That argument does not work with me because I was raised as the eldest of seven children by a single mother in a small fishing village in a rural area of Eastern Canada. My father was abusive and he was a hunter.

I have spent a large part of my life in third world nations and on the ocean. I oppose the killing of wildlife not because I am alienated from nature but because I happen to believe that you can’t love or respect nature with a gun.

I walked the trap lines in the Eastern bush as a child. I walked them to free captive animals from leg hold traps and to destroy the traps. I destroyed hundreds of these vicious contraptions between the ages of 11 and 18.

I have seen the suffering. In Kenya I watched a mother elephant literally weep for the loss of her calf. In Michigan I witnessed a Canada goose sit for days without eating beside the body of its mate who had been shot and not recovered. In Alaska I saw a Grizzly cub sitting confused beside the skinned body of its mother who was killed only for her hide. In the Yukon, I followed a trail of blood for over a mile to discover an aerial gut-shot wolf staring at me in fear and bewilderment.

What I have observed in the wild is suffering. It was plainly evident and I felt remorse for the arrogance of our species for justifying the taking of lives for sport, for enjoyment, for fun, and for pleasure.

In Zimbabwe I spent time with big game hunters, some of whom reluctantly led rich trophy hunters into the bush because they had lost their jobs as rangers and President Mugabe had ruled that unless wildlife made money the animals would be eliminated. These hunters described most of their clients as slob hunters, arrogant and ignorant and expressed their shame at being forced to participate in the murder business.

I was amazed to discover that a Texan accountant had won a prize from the Boone and Crocket Club for bagging a trophy whitetail deer and then he was exposed when it was discovered that the rack of an animal stolen from a taxidermist in Alberta had been surgically grafted onto a smaller animal on a game farm in Mexico where they flushed it out from cover into the sights of the great hunter’s rifle.

It was John Muir, the founder of the Sierra Club who first described hunting as the murder business.

In a few places in the world people hunt for survival. In the past, people were forced to hunt for survival. The constituency the Sierra Club is now courting through its killer outreach program are not people who have a need to hunt for survival.

They are people who spend more money on weaponry, travel and related expenses than the value of the meat they obtain. It is not the meat they are after but the thrill of the kill.

Dick Cheney, when not shooting lawyers, describes how he loves to see the ducks tumble from the sky. I’ve heard hunters describe how pulling the trigger gives them an erection.

These are men who slaughter for pleasure. I call them perverse death deviants and I have no apologies for labeling them as such. Killing for pleasure is a sickness, no different than child molestation or rape.

There is no sport in killing an animal from a distance with a sophisticated tool designed to inflict death. The name sportsman implies that there is a fair contest. There is nothing fair about being ripped apart by high powered bullets.

Hunters target the biggest, the strongest and the best of the species they pursue. This is behavior outside the laws of ecology. It is unnatural predation and certainly cannot be condoned by credible conservationists.

Hunters defend their perverse desire to extinguish life by saying it is traditional. Unfortunately many barbaric practices are traditional. However, modern day hunting bears little relation to so called traditional hunting. Hunters today are more akin to those who eradicated the bison and took only the tongues.

Hunters were responsible for the extinction of the Labrador duck, the Passenger Pigeon, the Eastern Bison, the Plains Wolf and the extirpation of the Grizzly from most of the lower 48 states. They were not only killers they were involved in the act of specicide, the complete eradication of entire species. This was not conservation.

Hunters cite Theodore Roosevelt as a big game hunter who was also a conservationist. This is true, he was both. He lived in a time when killing for pleasure was accepted but it was also a time when racism was accepted as normal and it was considered abnormal for women to have any rights, especially the right to vote. Roosevelt did set aside land to conserve much in the same way that the British aristocracy set aside land as exclusive hunting preserves to keep out the lower classes.

The Sierra Club is spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to reach out to invite killers to join the Club. The leadership of the Club believes that the over 80% of Club members who don’t take pleasure from killing must be tolerant of the less than 20% who do. They want to bring in more killers into the Club.

There is a big difference between hunting and killing. Photographers and film makers can hunt wildlife. It actually takes more skill to hunt a Mountain sheep with a camera than with a rifle. Any nimrod can pull a trigger and send a high velocity bullet unexpectedly into living tissue to shatter organs and induce shock. The photographer brings back nobility, a creature caught in its natural habitat in harmony with the world around it.

The killer watches his victim tumble from the air or crash to the ground as it chokes and gurgles on its own life blood. The photographer brings back life. The hunter brings back death.

I have been a hunter myself. I’ve never killed anything but I have stalked and hunted human poachers. I have destroyed their ships, their rifles, their nets, their longlines and their harpoons. I have snatched clubs from the bloody hands of sealers and defended myself from their attacks. My form of hunting is much fairer and gutsier than these killers who prey upon their unsuspecting and innocent victims. I target the guilty not the innocent.

Once I trekked with Kenyan rangers across the plains of Tsavo on the track of poachers. We followed their trail of elephant carcasses rotting on the ground with only their tusks removed. We found the criminals. They fired on us and killed one of our rangers. We did not kill them. We wounded two and arrested seven. They were armed with AK-47 rifles and our rangers were armed with British Enfield 303’s. We were up against a superior foe and we beat them. It was not sport. It was not fun. It was dangerous and necessary work and the objective was to save lives, not to extinguish lives.

That is the only kind of hunting that makes sense today in a world with a human population approaching seven billion. If every American exercised their right to kill, the ducks, geese, quail, elk, deer and other creatures would disappear quite quickly. There are simply to many of us and not very many of them.

It can hardly be an egalitarian sport if only a minority of citizens can realistically participate. Instead of encouraging hunting, groups like the Sierra Club should be discouraging the number of hunters. The nation and the world needs fewer killers of wildlife, not more.

In Europe over a hundred million songbirds are gunned down every year. Elephant populations have been reduced by 70% in East Africa since I worked on poaching patrols there in 1978. World fisheries are in a state of collapse. Wildlife is getter scarcer and there is more need now than ever for protection.

Why can’t we protect wetlands simply because wetlands need to be protected? Why is there this demand that killers are needed to help protect wetlands simply because they want to slaughter ducks? Canada geese mate for life. Shouldn’t it bother us that we shatter tens of thousands of these relationships every year? Why should we tolerate the accumulation of lead and steel shot in the marshes and estuaries? Why should we tolerate the legal murder of human beings that we label as hunting accidents, especially when the victim is a non-killer, perhaps a child some nimrod has mistaken for a deer.

The son of Sigmund Freud was walking on his own property in Quebec when a hunter shot and killed him. The killer was found not guilty because the death was ruled an accident.

When a stranger can kill you on your own land and get away with it, it demonstrates that our tolerance for this legal killing has gone over the top of acceptability.

One killer wrote me to say that my radical anti-hunting ideas were unacceptable for a member of the Board of the Sierra Club. When did opposition to killing, to the taking of life, to the extinguishment of a living creature, to the wasting of a sentient being become a radical idea?

Sometimes I think we live in such a bizarre world where advocates for life are considered radical and proponents of death are considered normal, where violence is considered acceptable and non-violence is dismissed as unpatriotic or cowardly.

Few killers question the morality of their actions. Once you have reached a stage where you can inflict cruelty and death, thoughts of morality, empathy and respect have long since vanished.

For if a killer of a deer could feel the pain and anguish of his victim or see the fawn starve because of a mother that did not return they would have little appetite for the meat.

Humans who have crossed the line into dealing death and inflicting misery have become alienated from the wonderment of life and no longer see or appreciate the magic of being alive.

Life is to be cherished, protected, defended and championed, not to be wantonly and cruelly destroyed, and certainly not for so frail an excuse as pleasure or sport.

This essay may be freely distributed and published.

Captain Paul Watson
Founder and President of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society (1977-
Co-Founder – The Greenpeace Foundation (1972)
Co-Founder – Greenpeace International (1979)
Director of the Sierra Club USA (2003-2006)
Director – The Farley Mowat Institute
Director – http://www.harpseals.org

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And how he hight, himselfe he did ycleepe,
The Shepheard of the Ocean by Name,
And said he came far from
the main-sea deepe.
– Edmund Spenser
A.C.E. 1590

http://www.Seashepherd.org
Tel: 360-370-5650
Fax: 360-370-5651

Address: P.O. Box 2616
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“ECO-PIRATE: THE STORY OF PAUL WATSON” is a feature-length documentary about a man on a mission to save the planet and its oceans. Currently being screened at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival to wide acclaim, this documentary is the first of it’s kind to follow the life of Captain Paul Watson’s tireless battle to save our oceans. Do not miss this film!

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Prince Harry Won’t Hunt Animals Because Meghan Markle Disapproves

https://radaronline.com/celebrity-news/prince-harry-wont-hunt-meghan-markle-animal-rights/

He refuses royal Boxing Day shoot tradition for the sake of animal lover fiancée.

Prince Harry‘s fiancée Meghan Markle has had quite the influence on him already!

As The Sun reported, Harry is skipping the traditional Boxing Day, Dec. 26, hunting spree with the other royals so he doesn’t upset Markle, a noted animal lover.

A source told The Sun, “The Boxing Day shoot was always going to be a tricky issue [for Harry]. Meghan is a keen animal rights campaigner and doesn’t like hunting in any form.

PHOTOS: Her Royal Thighness! Prince Harry’s Girlfriend Flashes Her Legs In Sultry Shoot

“Harry loves it and has always been out there on Boxing Day. But if it means breaking with long-standing royal traditions to avoid upsetting her, so be it,” the source said.

If Markle was “not comfortable” with Harry taking part, he “wouldn’t want to upset her,” according to the insider.

Now, Prince Charles and Prince William will participate in the shoot on the royal’s Sandringham estate without Harry.

PHOTOS: Prince Harry’s Girlfriend Meghan Markle Claims ‘People Wanted To Kill Me!’

Harry, 33, and Meghan, 36, announced their engagement on Nov. 27. They have been thrilling the British public with appearances, but some have raised skepticism about Harry marrying a divorced American actress.

There was also a royal scandal when Princess Michael wore a racist brooch to a lunch with Markle — and then had to apologize. Markle is bi-racial.

The former Suits star loves animals and fights for their rights. She was recently devastated after her dog Guy, a beagle, suffered two broken legs.

PHOTOS: Prince Harry’s Girlfriend Goes Back To Work After Nude Photo Scandal

She had to leave another beloved pet pooch behind in Toronto to marry Harry.

While Markle, as a royal fiancée, will spend Christmas Day at Sandringham with Queen Elizabeth and the rest of Harry’s family on Monday, the engaged couple will likely not even be seen at the hunt the next day! The other royals, however, should be keen to bag deer and other animals on Boxing Day as usual.

The break from the shoot could give the Prince and Markle some time alone to plan their May 19 wedding!

Hunters careless, inhumane

Letter in answer to:

http://www.pressherald.com/2017/12/27/maine-voices-actions-of-a-select-few-unfairly-portray-hunters-as-careless-inhumane/

Dear Editor,

Well, Taylor LaFlamme was right about one thing in her January 27 “Maine Voices” piece, “Actions of a select few unfairly portray hunters as careless, inhumane.” The one thing she was right about was that, “..everyone has their opinion,” and hers was consistent with the opinion piece’s misguided title. 

I’m not defending Maine drivers, but when comparing auto versus hunting accidents it’s only fair to consider how many vehicles are on the roads in a given year and how many hunters are in the woods during hunting season. Granted, there are times when it seems there are a lot of hunters out there, but so far there isn’t the need for speed limits or traffic lights to prevent a pileup.

Yes, everyone has the right to their opinion, but perhaps in light of some of the recent well publicized hunting accidents, opinions in defense of hunting are best kept to oneself.

The piece ends with the inarguable statement, “Hunting…is a way of meeting new people and making new memories.” The question is, why do those memories have to revolve around killing?

Jim Robertson

Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting    

Maine Voices: Actions of select few unfairly portray hunters as careless, inhumane

NORTH YARMOUTH — As a teenage girl, an avid hunter and a Mainer, it has come to my attention that there have recently been many unfair generalizations regarding hunters and their ability to hunt safely. Most of these generalizations are posted as comments on social media and news websites. Unfortunately, hunting is usually covered only when something has gone horribly wrong, stereotyping hunters as reckless and irresponsible.

From firsthand experience, I can express to you that hunters in general are not the problem; only select individuals make poor decisions. As in any human activity, such as driving and boating, accidents are inevitable. For example, in 2016 there were 160 car-related deaths and nine boating-related deaths in Maine, yet since 2011, there have only been three hunting-related deaths in Maine.

Responsibility is a central ideal of hunting, which is why candidates for a hunting license must complete safety courses and pass a test, including multiple questions regarding the process of identifying your target before shooting. In fact, it is a Maine law that in order to acquire a hunting license after the age of 16, one must have taken and passed a hunter safety course, unless one can prove possession of a hunting license before 1976.

Unfortunately, the occasional hunter has failed to adhere to these core ideals, resulting in unfair backlash against hunters in Maine. For example, after WGME’s coverage of an Oxford accident wherein a man was shot while hunting with his friends, someone who said they were from southern Maine commented online, “Hunters are idiots.”

And this isn’t the only case of people generalizing that hunters are negligent and dumb. Referring to the Hebron incident, a commenter whose online name is Firenze said on Britain’s Daily Mail website: “Hunters want us to respect them, but they continue to act irresponsibly.

How are hunters any more irresponsible than drivers in Maine? With an average of 148 car-related deaths a year in Maine since 2011, and only three hunting-related deaths in that same time period, couldn’t one argue that drivers are more irresponsible than hunters?

Although everyone has their opinions, not everyone is aware of why we hunt in the first place. For many, venison is a food source that fills a freezer at a much cheaper price than buying meat from a grocery store. Many Maine families depend on the game they shoot each hunting season to feed them through winter.

Not only is hunting for your own food cheaper, but it is also healthier and more humane. What deer in the woods eat is all natural and contains no preservatives, making venison better for one’s health. Hunters are commonly asked whether it is inhumane to shoot such a beautiful creature, but what many don’t realize is that hunting is more humane than what some factory farms do to the cows that end up in our supermarkets.

Hunting also benefits all Mainers by controlling Maine’s deer population. If we didn’t hunt, deer populations would become too great, drastically increasing the risk of deer-related car crashes. Hunting also contributes greatly to Maine’s economy, generating $8.1 million from the 168,890 licenses sold in 2016. Hunting is important to Maine and its history, though it is often misunderstood by many.

In the past five years, the number of hunting licenses has risen 10 percent, yet the number of hunting-related accidents is at a record low. Only three hunting-related deaths have occurred since 2011, yet because of the careless actions of a select few individuals, people still make disparaging generalizations about all hunters. Hunting plays a very important role in our state, even for those who don’t hunt, and many know nothing about it, yet they call us all reckless and irresponsible.

Hunting unites Mainers and is a way of meeting new people and making memories. I have never been more proud to say that I am a Maine hunter.

Possible hunter gunfire caused lockdown of Appoquinimink schools

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Sounds of gunfire, possibly from hunters, caused Appoquinimink School District’s Cedar Lane Campus to go into a temporary lockdown Monday morning.

The lockdown, which was reported about 9 a.m., was short-lived after multiple state police troopers and its aviation unit responded to the vicinity and found nothing suspicious.

“It is believed to be hunters in the area,” said Sgt. Richard Bratz, a state police spokesman. “Waterfowl and small game are currently in season.”

Sounds of gunfire in the area of Cedar Lane Road, north of Middletown, caused Cedar Lane Early Childhood Center, Cedar Lane Elementary and Alfred G. Waters Middle schools to go on lockdown.

Hunter who received ‘nasty’ death threats is now an inspiration to female hunting community

http://www.foxnews.com/great-outdoors/2017/12/07/hunter-who-received-nasty-death-threats-is-now-inspiration-to-female-hunting-community.html

Hunter and advocate Nikki Tate has been feeling a little overwhelmed since an articleabout her love of duck and deer hunting went viral.

“It’s been crazy,” Tate told Fox News. “Both positive and negative, but mostly positive.”

The 27-year-old lawyer had been receiving death threats through her Instagram, which showcases her hunting lifestyle.

“People would send things like, ‘I wish I could do to you what you did to that deer,’ or ‘Karma is a b—-,’” she said.

nikki tate 5

Tate often posts pictures of herself and her hunting dogs posing with carcasses of deer, hogs and waterfowl.  (Nikki Tate)

But Tate, who promotes ethical hunting, says the death threats weren’t shocking.

HUNTER FORCED TO DEFEND HER LIFESTYLE AFTER RECEIVING DEATH THREATS

“People have strong opinions and hunting is a trigger for a lot of people,” Tate said.

“I know other female hunters who have received those kinds of comments, and once I started getting a larger audience [on Instagram], random negative comments would start to trickle in,” she added. “Around 10K followers I would start getting private messages, really nasty and threatening comments.”

nikki tate 1

Tate says she’s been sent “really nasty and threatening comments” due to her lifestyle.  (Nikki Tate)

However, the hostile messages have paled in comparison to the outpouring of support she has received from the hunting community — after the article, her Instagram gained more than 2,000 followers overnight.

“People have messaged me on Instagram saying I am a role model and inspiration, and thanking me for supporting conservation,” she said.

nikki tate 4

Tate tells Fox News she hunts because it lets her know “exactly where my food came from.”  (Nikki Tate)

Also outside of the death threats, her unexpected celebrity has started a respectful dialogue around hunting that she hopes will continue.

“People who don’t agree with me have messaged me and asked me questions about hunting and why I do it. We have had very intellectual conversations — it’s been so rewarding for me.”

HUNTER BAGS TWO ‘BUCKS OF A LIFETIME’ IN SAME WEEK

Now that she’s been pushed into the limelight, Tate says she wants to use the opportunity to further spread her message about conservation and hunting.

“When you kind of get in the public eye and you have an opportunity to spread a message about conservation, take it,” she said. “I’m involved and I love being involved. I want to do something positive with the attention.”

nikki tate 2

“When you kind of get in the public eye and you have an opportunity to spread a message about conservation, take it,” says Tate.  (Nikki Tate)

More: http://www.foxnews.com/great-outdoors/2017/12/07/hunter-who-received-nasty-death-threats-is-now-inspiration-to-female-hunting-community.html

Opening weekend: Deer hunting licenses for children up by 1000+ from last year

Opening weekend: Deer hunting licenses for children up by 1,000+ from last year 🦌

fox6now.com 1h ago

MADISON — Deer hunting licenses for Wisconsin children were up by more than 1,000 from last year by the end of opening weekend for the nine-day gun season.

The Stevens Point Journal reports that the mentored license allows children to participate in the hunt as long as they’re accompanied by an adult. This was the first hunting season since the state’s minimum age to hunt deer was eliminated. Children had to be at least 10 years old to hunt with an adult until Gov. Scott Walker signed the measure into law earlier this month.

State hunters had purchased 17,267 mentored hunting licenses for opening weekend, up from 16,139 bought by about the same time last year.

Oklahoma Weekly Hunting News 11/17

OKC weekend hunting news:

The most popular of all the Okla. hunting seasons in the state, the 16-day
Deer gun season, opens Saturday statewide.
A state big game biologist states “It is like Thanksgiving and football. That
Is what part of fall is, getting out there for a deer hunt with a rifle.”
If past history is any indication, more than 150,000 hunters will be
In the woods Saturday for the deer gun season opener.
Not only is deer hunting an annual tradition for many Okla. Families,
It is also significant to the Okla. economy as gas stations, convenience
Stores, sporting goods outlets and meat processors rely on the money
Spent by deer hunters per year.
One economic study indicates that Okla. deer hunters spend $130
Million annually.
Based on the number of deer taken by hunters during the archery
And muzzleloader seasons, Okla.’s deer harvest is on pace to reach around
100,000 again.
Okla. hunters killed more than 100,000 deer for the first time in 2000
And since then, hunters have reached near that mark or exceeded it
11 times in the past 17 years.
Last year’s grand total was 99,023 and the 13-year average is 103,000.
The Okla. Dept. of Wildlife Conservation has been pushing the importance
Of letting young bucks walk to increase the opportunities for a trophy
Deer in the future.
More Oklahoma hunters are now willing to practice what deer biologists
Have been saying.
A/w the Wildlife Dept.’s research, 65% of the deer killed by Okla. hunters
In 1985 were yearlings and over the years that no. has dramatically
Decreased.
Yearlings represented 46% of the deer harvest in 2000 and just 23% in
2010. Last year, only 17% of the deer killed were yearlings and last season
The majority of bucks harvested were 2.5 and 3.5 years old.
10 percent of bucks harvested last season were 6.5 years old and in 2010
Bucks that old only represented 3% of the harvest. In 2000, 6.5 year old
Bucks represented just 1% of the harvest.
A spokesman for the Wildlife Dept. states that “It is really a testament
To our hunters. They are actually the deer managers. They are the
Boots on the ground and making a decision every single time they pull
That trigger or choose not to pull that trigger.”

Sales of pink hunting clothing not blazing in Wisconsin

http://www.jsonline.com/story/sports/outdoors/2017/11/10/sales-pink-hunting-clothing-not-blazing-wisconsin/852710001/

RICHFIELD – Blaze pink, authorized in 2016 as a legal hunting color in Wisconsin’s gun deer seasons, has failed to make a splash among hunters, according to several retailers in the state.

In fact, Cabela’s in Richfield, one of the state’s largest outdoors stores, didn’t even offer blaze pink hunting coats this season after stocking a limited amount in 2016.

Corporate officials did not return calls seeking comment on the decision.

A few blaze pink coats were available at Sherper’s in Hales Corners, but demand has been soft for the products, said vice president Nate Scherper.

“We haven’t had a huge response to it,” Scherper said. “We’ve really had very few people looking to buy it.”

Scherper said his store had about 95% blaze orange and 5% blaze pink items in stock.

“Most of our female customers prefer the orange over the pink,” Scherper said.

The racks at Mills Fleet Farm in Germantown also had less than 10% blaze pink items. But sales there had been “decent,” said assistant manager Tim Geschke.

“There’s been a moderate reception to it,” Geschke said. “The vast majority of our sales are still blaze orange, however.”

At Dick’s Sporting Goods in Brookfield, blaze pink was selling less than blaze orange, but it “was moving,” said sales associate Joe Schroeder.

When Gov. Scott Walker signed Assembly Bill 291 into law in February 2016, Wisconsin became the first state in the nation to allow blaze pink for deer hunting.

The law elicited a wide range of responses. Proponents of the bipartisan legislation hoped it would help recruit hunters by offering more options.

Rep. Joel Kleefisch (R-Oconomowoc), who introduced the bill with Rep. Nick Milroy (D-South Range), proudly brandished pink clothing as he talked up the legislation.

“We have no illusions about women flocking to hunting because of blaze pink being allowed,” said Kleefisch at a 2015 hearing for the bill. “We’d like to provide more choice to all.”

The bill obtained 38 co-sponsors in the Assembly.

But many hunters, including women, considered it a joke or worse.

“I think it’s really misguided,” said Sarah Ingle of Genesee, president of the Women’s Hunting and Sporting Association and a hunter for about 25 years. “Among the group of women I hunt with, we find it insulting and demeaning.”

Geschke, the Fleet Farm assistant manager, said the pink appeared to be more of a “fad” and appealed more to the “trend conscious.”

So far, it hasn’t been sufficient to produce strong demand for blaze pink, Scherper said.

Parents chime in on decision eliminating state’s minimum hunting age

WISCONSIN The State Assembly passes a bill eliminating Wisconsin’s minimum hunting age.

“I think we’re losing sight of why the original law was put into place, it was put into place to protect children,” said Joe Slattery, a concerned parent.

Slattery opposes the measure. Right now the minimum age to buy a gun-hunt license is 12 years old, but children as young as 10 can be part of a mentored hunt.

This bill removes the minimum age from the mentored hunt program and eliminates the requirement of only one weapon between hunter and mentor.

Jordan Schuld is an avid hunter with five kids. He believes parents know their children’s capabilities.

“Each parent knows their own child and knows when they’re ready to go out in the woods, if they’re able to hold the gun weight wise and if they’re responsible enough to handle it,” Schuld said.

Schuld doesn’t agree with the entire proposal, he still favors a mentor hunt having only one gun.

“I just don’t think that there should be two weapons between the parent and the child, I think a mentor hunt is a mentor hunt, and if you have two weapons it’s not a mentor hunt anymore, two people are hunting,” said Schuld.

According to the Michigan DNR, studies show if children do not have an interest in an activity before the age of 10, it is unlikely that they will continue that activity later in life.

“As a parent, I would like my child to have the same interests as mine, but if they don’t– they’re their own individual,” said Slattery.

Slattery says this legislation would lead to more hunting accidents, like the one that took the life of his son.

“You can get them involved at six, by taking them hunting with you, that’s perfectly legal right now, you just don’t have to put a gun in their hands, my son was killed at the hands of another 13-year-old,” said Slattery.

“If one my kids seem ready and they’re under 10, I’ll absolutely take them hunting, if not, I’ll wait,” said Schuld.

The State Senate is expected to vote on the measure next week, if passed there it would head to the Governor’s desk for his signature.