One definition of the word “sport” is as follows: “An activity involving physical exertion and skill in which an individual or team competes against another or others for entertainment. I will let you contemplate such things as baiting, blinds, beer, hunting accidents, night scopes, decoys, lures, hounds, high-powered rifles, crossbows, camouflage AND MANY MORE as you mentally list the reasons hunting and trapping ARE NOT SPORTS.
In view of that…let’s shoot down the mis-named “Sportsman’s Act”. Once again, a small faction of wealthy trophy hunters is pressuring your elected officials to allow the importation of — are you SERIOUS? — threatened polar bear trophies from Canada. They also want to open millions of acres of public lands to “sport” hunting and commercial trapping. And they want to do it without evaluating possible implications for animals, habitat and the opinions of Americans who enjoy our nation’s wild spaces without having to kill the inhabitants. This bill would also permanently strip the Environmental Protection Agency of the authority to regulate lead shot and other ammunition under the Toxic Substances Control Act, and would add lead sinkers and other fishing gear to the existing exemptions. To add insult to injury, the bill would direct up to $10 million annually toward improving access to landlocked public lands, allocate a larger proportion of existing federal funding to building and maintaining shooting ranges on federal and non-federal lands, and require federal land managers to consider how their plans may impact hunting, fishing and recreational shooting. Do I need to remind you of the suffering involved for animals left to die slowly of bad shots, for their families and children, for animals trapped for days in agony, whose only release is (maybe) the trapper and his dogs? Hunting and trapping are NOT sports. They are HORRORS.
Please, if you don’t already know who they are and how to get in touch with them, find your federal legislators here: https://secure.humanesociety.org/site/SPageServer/?pagename=electedOfficials_federal
and make a brief, polite phone call today to urge them to OPPOSE S. 405, the Sportsmen’s Act, and protect our wildlife and wildlands. (I know you don’t FEEL polite. I don’t either. But let’s pull ourselves together.) Follow up with an email (links at the same site above).