Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Has Hunting Gone Mainstream?

© By Othmar Vohringer

It seems that recently hunting has become the “in thing” to do. Is it possible that people are turning back to the reality of life after years of indoctrination to a Walt Disney world view? It seems so.

Facebook inventor Mark Zuckerberg stated last year he would only eat meat from animals he himself killed and to that end he would take up hunting. This announcement caused quite the stir among the animal rights community but, according to Zuckerberg, the stir was dwarfed by the amount of positive responses. Then, this year, the New York Times ran an article about the positive aspects of hunting.

Before that article in the NY Times the “O Magazine”, owned and published by the formerly fierce anti hunter and anti meat eater Ophra Winfry, published a very positive article about a young women who took up hunting to supply her family with organic wild meat. Later on the TV show Ophra defended the article, and hunting, to her audience and found the response from the animal rights and anti-hunters “laughable and highly ignorant”.

The list of political and show business celebrities, among them the sons of Donald Trump, coming out of the closet admitting publicly that they are hunters, or endorse hunting, is getting longer each year. By comparison the list that supports the animal rights movement is getting shorter.

The current US Republican vice presidential candidate, Paul Ryan is an avid bowhunter and tells everybody who is willing to listen. Who can forget the former governor of Alaska and former outspoken Republican vice presidential candidate, Sarah Palin. To her, hunting is a long time family tradition upon which a reality TV show was based. In fact it was Mrs. Palin who started the “coming out” trend for high profile folks to admit that they are hunters.

Closer to home celebrities are still somewhat intimidated by the verbal bashing of animal rights directed at everyone that does not conform to their radical political views. I only know of Prime Minister Harper talking publically about that he likes: waterfowl hunting. I am not sure if the Conservative MP Garry Breitkreuz is a hunter too. What I do know about him is that he was the driving force behind the abolition of the gun-registry and the founder of the multi-party Canadian Outdoor Caucus, a program working toward the goal of declaring hunting, trapping and fishing a national heritage.

It’s a good thing that celebrities are slowly finding the courage to stand up to the ignorant ridiculing of the animal rights rabble and admit publically that they are hunters and proud of it. Hunting going mainstream may turn out to be a very valuable tool in the preservation of our hunting and conservation heritage, given the fact that celebrities tend to influence their followers to emulate them. One thing is sure, according to the statistics, hunting is on the upswing. In BC alone over 7000 new hunters were registered last year.

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