Hunting is Murder on Animals
|Part XII -- Wildlife Management
As far as "managing animals" goes: animals managed just fine for millennia before humans ever evolved.
And just like the Native Americans -- whom we sought to "manage" by forcing them onto refuges and
murdering them in their homes -- the animals would do much better without our "management" of them.
Some feel that being against hunting is not realistic. But those who hunt are the ones who are not in touch
with the reality of today. The environment is too fragile a place now to support the games which hunters
and wildlife managers demand to play like spoiled children. And the violent, nuclear-armed and citizen-armed world we live in
cannot long endure the attitude that killing for pleasure is acceptable.
The violence we do in seeking recreation from torture and murder does not end with our animal victims.
Our violence extends to the environment. Millions of dollars have been spent to poison "non-game" fish
in thousands of miles of streams. There's no telling how much damage this has done to the environment.
But one clue is afforded by the fact that fishermen are often warned that the fish they catch are too
poisonous to eat.
To take one example: the California Deparment of FIsh and Game is busily poisoning bodies of water
with the pesticide Rotinone -- for the third year in a row -- in an effort to kill off every living thing that might compete with
endangered cut-throat trout, so that fishermen can catch them and kill them too.
But poisoning our waters is not the only "service" that fish and game departments provide for hunters.
In their efforts to provide what they call "maximum sustained yield," fish and game departments have programs which include:
- Burning of forests to provide habitat suited to hunted animals (at the expense of most of the "non-game" animals.)
- Poisoning and trapping natural predators so that the unnatural animals can kill for fun.
- Spaying of toxic pesticides and herbicides on federal lands to kill off all the vegetation except
for the low-level brush that deer like to eat.
During one typical year, government management of state and federal lands included the activities shown here: over
a million acres of our rapidly vanishing wilderness were ruined solely for the minority in this country who hunt.
Is that fair? 91% of Americans do not hunt, and while most of us would go out of our way to protect the rights
of eccentrics to do as they please, we must draw the line when the price is too high. I cannot sit idly by
while the ecology of this planet is ruined by those who insist they have a right to murder for fun.
In the private sector hunter's organizations have also done their fair share of environmental damage.
The organization known as "Ducks Unlimited" -- which attempts to ensure an overpopulation of ducks
for hunters to kill by manipluating the environment -- caused over a million acres of land to be flooded
in Canada. It is estimated that this project resulted in the drowning of some eight million animals and
caused countless others to flee to other -- probablly less suitable -- homes.
Hunters themselves have set brush-fires in an attempt to drive deer out of the woods.
In some cases these fires have burned out of control, destroying many acres of forests.
Hunters, in their typical way of getting everything backwards, claim to be the "true conservationsists."
But such a boast is unfounded. Several speices have been driven to extinction by hunters.
The Endangered Species Act of 1973 begins with these words:
The two major causes of extinction are hunting and the destruction of natural habitat.
The Act sites hunting as the only major factor in the extinction of dozens of animals, and lists hunting
as a major factor in the extinction of almost all the rest of the animals on its list.
Hunting does nothing to help animals: quite the opposite! It acts like evolution in reverse! Intensive deer hunting,
for example, often results in smaller, weaker deer: because hunters tend to shoot large healthy bucks, leaving
the weaker and younger to breed. In effect, hunting accomplishes the survival of the unfitest.
Douglas Chadwick, Montana wildlife biologist and former hunter has stated:
Whenever we kill more members of a population than any other single cause, we become the dominant selective force.
This means that the animals will begin to evolve largely in response to us.
We already know, for example, that heavy hunting pressures on large palm-antlered moose in Europe has led to the appearance
of thin, cervine, or deer-like antlers on males within a short time.
And world-renowned oceanographer Jaques Cousteau said in testimony before congress:
The real cure for our environmental problems is to understand that our job is to salvage mother nature.
We are facing a formidable enemy in this field: it is the hunters.
To convince them that they have to leave thier guns on the walls is going to be very difficult.
Since hunting and fishing are immoral, they harm the environment, and lead to violent attitudes in our society,
why don't we ban hunting and fishing? The answer, of course, is that it's very lucrative, and our society,
unfortunately, is built on private profit rather than the good of society as a whole.