“Hunting: Wasteful, cruel and definitely not a sport”…

I was all set to write a post on the cruelty of hunting for “sport” when I stumbled across Emily Achenbaum’s 2001 column. Even though it’s almost twelve years old,  it stands the test of time. Hunting
“for sport” is as cruel then as it is now. She took the words right out of my mouth.

Our beleaguered wolves will unfortunately have to deal with these “sport hunters” in less than eight days, unless the Ninth Circuit grants the injunction and puts a stop to it. Holding breath.

Hunting: Wasteful, cruel and definitely not a sport

Print | E-mail | Letter to the editor

Diamond in the Rough
Published February 19, 2001

People call me paranoid, but this time, babysitting but technically alone, I”m definitely being watched. Welcome to taxidermy heaven: In a two-story room roughly the size of a college apartment, I can”t even count of the number of animals covering the walls and balconies. To my right, a chair made out of multiple pairs of antlers. There”s a bear on the floor, another bear in the loft there are birds I cannot identify, exotic hairy heads from countries I probably cannot identify. Ice tongs capped off with hooves. Is that a beaver peering over the fireplace mantle, bird playfully glued into his mouth? Nope, it”s a wolverine. Go Blue.

So some people like to hunt.

The first time I entered this room a year ago, it took my breath away. Let”s not forget that “impressive” is not inherently a compliment it simply means an impression was made. The feeling I was overwhelmed by was one of waste. The kids, digging into fur pelts to find the remote, do not pay attention. I think I have grown accustomed to the room until I trip over a bear paw and am reminded it is out of whack. The room radiates something wrong. As a friend commented, “It”s a cemetery.”

Who am I to talk? I wear leather shoes but not leather pants or coats I eat fish but not things with fur or wings. I ride horses and keep dogs as pets. It is interesting that if one is not an extremist, their view is somehow undermined. The voice is deemed hypocritical by not being fanatic. I am not an animal-rights fanatic. Can a woman wearing mascara talk about feminism? Is everything really so one-sided? I don”t need to wear a PETA team jersey to say hunting as “sport” is disgusting and that those who hunt for sport are horrendously misguided and cruel people.

Unless you are reading this in the African wilderness or lord-knows-where Kentucky, there is no need for you to hunt. Animal products food, clothes, SUV interiors are brought to us by someone else in the form of Kroger and Calvin Klein. We do not need to fend for ourselves. Therefore, hunting becomes “sport.” “Sport” implies a couple of things to me: That it requires skill, is competitive, and fun. Flirting is a sport. Basketball is a sport. Hunting is not, because it fails on all three counts.

Patronizing eyebrows raise and smirk, “hunting takes a lot of skill,” as if that means anything significant. I would like to point out that walking in stilettos is a skill. Add some icy patches, a boyfriend that walks really fast and three Rolling Rocks and it”s almost impossible to carry off unless you are skilled. Girls start practicing at age 6, raiding mom”s closet and dressing up. Models get taught how to walk. But no one expects a badge for being able to do it just because it took effort and talent to learn how. And things that require skill don”t rest on a higher plane than an undevelopable ability like, oh, giving birth, because the latter doesn”t require practice.

Hunting is not competitive. As I write this column, a moose is hovering above me. His massive neck is firmly attached to a wooden plaque. Now, it”s not really a sport unless there”s a chance either guy could win. With a nose the size of my skull and eyes the size of my fist, the moose carcass could easily kill me if there was an unfortunate tremor that would dislodge him from the wall and send him careening toward my head. A moose could kill me if he was running and I didn”t get out of the way in time a moose could kill me if he was walking and I couldn”t get my car out of the way in time. The only way I could kill the moose is with a gun. Add that I”m wearing camouflage and I”ve destroyed parts of his habitat so he”s easier to find. And that I”m at a gamepark where he”s fenced in. Oh and that the moose doesn”t get to shoot back.

Sounds like playing Monopoly with my sister when she would rob the bank while I was up getting a snack. Why do hunters look so triumphant in photos? How hard was that really? And what have you really won? Did you really “dominate” something if you cheated?

This leaves us with fun. I don”t know why hunting is fun, but different folks, different strokes, etc. Running, studying a lot and waking up early are things I abhor and other people find fun, but at least the fit, the studious and the bright-eyed are not getting off on watching something bleed to death. I think it is interesting that hunters who witness a fatal accident often stop hunting,  fishermen who accidentally cast a hook into their own back develop a disinterest in their “sport.” I guess it”s not fun when they glimpse, even for a second, at the unnecessary pain they cause, the waste. I have yet to hear an intelligent argument supporting this non-sport, and I think there”s a reason for that.

http://michigandaily.com/forum or via email at emilylsa@umich.edu.

Photo: Giraffe Photo Courtesy Flickr Commons

Bottom Photo: Wolf hunters Flickr Commons

Posted in:  Trophy Hunting

Tags: sport hunting, hunting cruelty, senseless deaths,  wildlife under siege

Published in: on August 22, 2011 at 2:14 am  Comments (17)  
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17 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I believe hunting a limited amount of deer and hogs are ok. Only as long as you eat the meat. If your not going to eat the meat you don’t need to be killing it. I also think putting the head on a wall and the pelts on couches and rugs is unacceptable. Treating the kill as a trophy picture is also unacceptable. Kill to eat the meat and not kill just to kill.




  3. Any animal which is hunted by sportsmen and women for trophies is wrong.
    Sports hunters are not there for the food, by a trophy for their trophy room. Like an elk’s head mounted on a board and a polar bear rug.
    I love wolves and all wildlife. I do understand when a hunter goes out to get a deer or elk for food or another animal.
    But I do not like what is being done to wildlife. What good is it to kill a giraffe? Or a wolf??????????


    • Exactly Barbara!! But I even doubt the killing for meat part. Personally I believe most hunters kill for the thrill of the chase and the kill, the meat is secondary. Otherwise they could go to the local grocery store and pick up a few steaks. It’s much more expensive to buy hunting tags, Carhartt, big trucks, ammo, high priced rifles, ATVS, snowmobiles and take time off from work. There are a small percentage of people that kill strictly for the meat but not many. That’s my take on hunting.

      For the wolves, For the wild ones,


  4. Some respect for wildlife…. psychopaths.
    That vile grin never changes.


    • It’s always there John, always. What are they smiling about, I want to know? Killing a poor defenseless animal with a high powered rifle? Big men, small…..!!

      For the wolves, For the wild ones,


      • There is nothing that can be more preposterous and insulting to the intelligence of our species than to claim respect for life comes from torturing and destroying it for personal amusement.


  5. Wow Nabeki – this picture and article is moving. I agree with you about any sort of hunting. We are more than well provided for and do not need to hunt for survival, just the thrill of the kill. It disgusts me no end. My thoughts are never far away from the wolves and what they are about to face in the coming months. All I can hope for is that any kills are quick and clean but – who am I kidding… The world is mad. People are cruel and unreasonable and its only because of the people like you who fight endlessly for the wild things that we have any sort of wildlife left. Thank you from the bottom of my heart xxxx


    • Kim….Isn’t that the saddest thing ever? A gentle giraffe brought down and grinning trophy hunters draped over it’s dead body. I had no idea people even hunted giraffe. Who kills a giraffe for sport???

      For the wolves, For the wild ones,


  6. What “Big men” those r killing a beautiful animal.


  7. People will hunt anything to have a trophy in their trophy rooms.


    • So sad and true Barbara. There must be psychopathy related to that behavior?

      For the wolves, For the wild ones,


  8. When will all of this stupidty stop. These people who want the wolves gone do not understand the benefit of the wolves.
    Without the wolves the trees would not grow the grasses would not grow. There would be too many deer,elk and other wildlife to eat the trees and grass so that they do not grow.
    We would be overrun by deer,elk and so forth.


  9. Please let us call and get in touch with our Senators and Representatives. I did. We all need to do something.
    Wolves are here for a purpose. Just like the rest of nature and the humans.
    But some humans do not respect animal life. If they did they would not be killing,shooting,poisioning and trapping the wolves. I fought to mention that they are also gassing the mothers and babies in their dens.


    • Unfortunately Barbara every single Democrat Senator voted to delist wolves, except for three: Wyden, Leahy and Levin. They did this via budget rider and Obama signed it into law. It’s the Dems that are to blame for this. We had eight years of Bush. Obama promise “hope and change:” but delivered “more of the same”. Not even Bush was able to do this much damage to wolves and the ESA. We were sold out.



  10. Yes, It is a terrible cruel waste. How can these men pose so proudly after wasting these magnificant animals


  11. I can’t believe people would kill animals like this and then pose for pictures with smiles on their faces… when I see these animals killed for no reason at all it doesn’t make me feel pride for them, it is so sad and makes me want to cry.


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