Social Question

Dutchess_III's avatar

Is hunting for sport nothing more than a socially accepted form of sadism?

Asked by Dutchess_III (38423points) November 15th, 2010

I think it is. Now, if I lived in the wilderness, I imagine I could kill an animal for food. But to do it for “fun”....? No way. What’s the fun in watching an animal writhe in agony because the shot wasn’t clean, especially a bow shot. All hunters think they’re Atticus Finch, but they aren’t. I assume everyone her recalls Atticus shooting the rabid dog in “To Kill a Mockingbird”...

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372 Answers

nebule's avatar

I imagine…(but I could be totally wrong here…not knowing much about it…) that those in favour of ‘hunting’ will argue that hunting is never just for ‘sport’; there is always a purpose for it.

However, if there is such a thing as hunting for sport…I agree with you it is just a form of perhaps in some circles socially accepted sadism!

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, @nebule They’ll say the “purpose” is for food. To that I say, BS.

chyna's avatar

If you aren’t going to eat what you kill, then you are an ass in my book.

Coloma's avatar

I am strongly opposed to sport hunting.
Survival is one thing, killing for sport is entirely another.

For me it goes beyond programming, it is at the heart of an unenlightend mind.

I am, for the first time ever, considering taking out a coyote or two that are preying on pets and livestock on my mountain, but I do not feel pleasure in this.

However, my thoughts are that sometimes the greater good is at play and if culling one or two aggressive animals will restore years of peace and safety for many other domestic animals then perhaps I am willing to be open minded.

Survival or protecting ones animals are the only viable reasons for hunting in my opinion.

J0E's avatar

I think there is a misconception on exactly what “hunting for fun” actually means. I have a couple uncles that are avid hunters, and they definitly are hunting for the fun of it. However, that doesn’t mean they hunt because they enjoy killing things. To them hunting is about the preparation, the tracking, the research, and the build up to seeing all their hard work paid off.

Killing the animal is a small part of hunting, that is, if you’re doing it correctly.

OpryLeigh's avatar

I certainly couldn’t kill an animal for fun and I personally find it very difficult to understand why anyone would want to kill an animal for fun. However, I don’t know what motivates people to hunt and kill animals and so I try to keep an open mind. It always makes me feel very uncomfortable though.

Winters's avatar

There’s nothing wrong with thrill seeking, I personally love the thrill of the hunt.

In fact, it has gotten to the extent that I am bored with most wildlife game so I now live on an island with my faithful Cossack, and anyone who ends up on my island is my game, nothing more exciting than humans.

but in all seriousness, I normally hunt either for food, or to help assist cut down the size of a unhealthy/unsustainable/over sized population of game (normally wild boars, if anyone else here has hunted wild boars before, I’m sure they’re capable of backing me up when I state that an over sized population of wild boar can actually destroy the local environment, hence hunting them actually helps preserve nature, and yes, it’s a blast).

JustmeAman's avatar

The kill is part of hunting and should be honored and the animal respected.

nebule's avatar

@Dutchess_III other purposes might be to keep animal populations down… I’m not a supporter of hunting by the way!

Aster's avatar

Around here, meaning Texas, (and Arkansas too as I recall) we have what’s called , “deer camp.” This means that the guys hole up in somebody’s house, in what is often called the “man room.” This highly educational activity, never to be considered enjoyable, consists of men sitting around drinking beer , sometimes smoking and talking about what’s about to materialize with some “high IQ” remarks thrown in regarding female anatomy. About 3 weeks before the highly respectful killing of deer.
I thought you might find this fascinating. Ha.

JilltheTooth's avatar

My brother-in law is an avid hunter. He researches carefully and hunts in areas where culling is necessary to deal with overpopulation, and often sacrifices a tag to track and dispatch wounded animals that are suffering. He fills their freezer every year and donates to groups that prepare food for shelters and soup kitchens. He loves the sport of it, and is very responsible about environmental impact and safety. I have no argument with the way he follows his sport.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

I have spoken to hunters before – I have heard many of their reasons and their reasons haven’t convinced me that it is an ethical thing to do. Period.

Aster's avatar

@J0E “To them hunting is about the preparation, the tracking, the research, and the build up to seeing all their hard work pay off.” I feel like a silent prayer is in order.
This hard work is what they discuss at the aforementioned deer camp.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@J0E You said, “Killing the animal is a small part of hunting, that is, if you’re doing it correctly.” I guess, by the same token, if you in the hands of a sadistic human who had been tracking you for a few hours, killing you would be just a small part of the hunt.

@JustmeAman…You said, “The kill is part of hunting and should be honored and the animal respected.” Do you think a photographer who spent as much time preparing for his or her “shoot” would get the same respect? Do you really think that luring a bear to stick his head in a metal barrel full of bear bait, and then shooting him while he’s defenseless and distracted, from a safe perch in a tree is something to be “respected”?

Winters's avatar

@Aster There’s a lot more to hunting than simply marching off into the woods and shooting the first thing that moves (We’re not all Dick Cheney), the preparation for the hunt can be very strenuous.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Winters I have heard that and people take pride in this preparation – however, I suppose it depends on whether or not that kind of achievement matters to you more than the animal at whose expense you’re feeling proud of yourself. To some people, it doesn’t matter that they’re putting themselves above an animal for sport, to some it does.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

If it was the preparation and the stalking, then a camera would be all that was needed for a successful hunt.

J0E's avatar

@Dutchess_III Yeah, and imagine being an apple hanging from a tree, and after hours of looking through the orchard some sadistic human finally finds you, the perfect apple, and mercilessly bites into your flesh.

Coloma's avatar

Well…the old ways of hunting with bows and arrows, snares or spears was a much better ‘match’ and a much more fair arrangement than high powered rifles with scopes that can drop an unsuspecting animal from hundreds of yards away.

I still do not advocate ‘pleasure’ hunting but at the very least if one wishes to call it a ‘sport’ then make it truly sporting not some chicken shit ambush.

Somehow I think that most ‘sport’ hunters would not be too keen on going hand to paw with a cougar or bear. Ya think? lol

Dutchess_III's avatar

@J0E I don’t have a problem with hunting if you and/or your family genuinely need food. But no one in America does. It’s done for sport. And you’re comparing apples and deer, and you can’t do that! Apples don’t have emotions.

I second everything @Coloma said.

Mat74UK's avatar

I go out shooting rabbits with an air rifle because I enjoy it! I also eat what I kill.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@Mat74UK That’s about the first honest answer. There is a bloodlust to hunting. I’ve done it in the past.

Trillian's avatar

I’ve dated a few men who were hunters. I’ve gone with one man who hunted wih a dog to flush partridges. It was boring and I stayed in the truck. I learned from my daughter’s dad how to skin a ‘coon. I could do it now if I had to, I suppose.
I know that the DNR tracks game levels and sets the numbers of licenses every year. I know that the levels fluctuate based on some complicated eco-cycle and that people actally do need to thin the numbers every year for some reason. Where I come from, lots of famlies rely on deer meat to see them through the year and they resent hunters from the southern part of the state that come up just for the sport of it.
I personally don’t see the attraction in spending all that time and money just to drag my ass out of bed and sit in a cold, damp spot with buck piss on my clothes.
On the other hand. I think it’s kind of primal and to me there is an attractiveness to a man who is that self sufficient. I could live with it. “Hi honey, did you get anything? Leave it out in the garage, clean the blood off with the hose, you know I don’t want that tracked in here.” Yeah, we’d have to have a separate ‘fridge in the garage and he would have to eat that with his stupid hunter friends on guys night or whatever, lord knows I don’t want to eat it, and I sure don’t want it in the house but whatever.
I cetainy don’t feel qualified to judge them or imagine what their motivations are. I certainly don’t think they all believe any such thing as that they are some man from a fictitious work. I seriously doubt that they think anything of the kind. Nor do I think that they need to answer to my ethical or moral code. Of course they have their own and what they do fits within their own framework.
Men have been hunting since we came out of the trees. There must be something more to it than the need to survive. Just because I don’t do it doesn’t mean that all men should just all of a sudden stop hunting. What an absurd notion. I don’t have the presumption to expect everyone to live by my code.

J0E's avatar

@Dutchess_III No one in America needs food?!?! What…

Anyway, yes I know apples don’t have emotions, but thats the point. A deer hunter sees a deer like you see an apple. To them their is nothing wrong with killing it because it’s just an animal, and not everyone in this world thinks animals are people too.

Coloma's avatar

One of my favorite ’ hunting’ stories involved a freind of mine whose 3 sons ages 10, 12 & 14 shot a canadian goose with a bb gun at a lake near their home some years ago and brought it home.

She made them pluck that goose and eat it down to the bones in soups and various other cooking methods for a week until it was all gone amidst cries and protests that it tasted terrible. lol

Those boys learned their lesson 100% and there was never another incident of random killing.

crisw's avatar

@J0E
“Killing the animal is a small part of hunting, that is, if you’re doing it correctly.”

It may be a small part to the hunter, but it’s everything to the hunted animal.

Coloma's avatar

@J0E

It has nothing to do with seeing animals as people.
It has everything to do with seeing EVERY living thing as a manifestaion of the one life, ‘God’ if you will and having reverence and respect for all life.

YOU are made of the same stuff that rabbit is, just arranged a little differently.

The native americans always gave thanks and blessed brother rabbit for giving his life to sustain another.

There is a big dif, between honoring the life of another creature instead of assuming a superior status that animals are here to be dominated by mans whims.

J0E's avatar

@crisw @Coloma I know. But you have to imagine explaining this to a hunter. You can’t tell someone who is color blind what the color red looks like.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@J0E Do you think all hunters are specific kind of people…in that do all hunters share a specific train, in your opinion?

Aethelwine's avatar

@Coloma @crisw What about animals that prey on humans? Do you honestly think they would take a moment to think “oh, I better not kill that human and eat it, it’s so adorable”? lol

crisw's avatar

I am against all sport hunting, for a variety of reasons.

Ethically, I cannot condone the taking of a life from an animal who very much wants to go on living when there are alternatives . Destroying a sentient being to get your kicks is unethical.

Ecologically, hunting is a nightmare. States are run as giant game farms, predators are ruthlessly slaughtered, and the end goal of “maximum sustainable yield” drives almost all wildlife management decisions. Rarely is hunting truly controlling “overpopulation”- instead, populations are managed to ensure that there is enough game to satisfy the hunters. We need look no farther than the Rocky Mountains and the controversy over gray wolves. Wolves do a far better job of controlling deer and elk populations, and of benefiting the ecosystem, than hunters ever could. But hunters are clamoring to kill wolves- because they think the wolves eat their elk.

I agree that hunters can be very skilled in tracking and finding game, and that there is a thrill in that. But you can get the same experience from wildlife photography- or, for that matter, hunting mushrooms. Killing isn’t required.

J0E's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Hell no, because I know a lot of people who hunt and there are many different ways they approach hunting. But, by reading this thread I would wager that most people do think like that.

crisw's avatar

@jonsblond

“What about animals that prey on humans? Do you honestly think they would take a moment to think “oh, I better not kill that human and eat it”

We are the only animals capable of making reasoned moral decisions. We cannot base our behavior on what other animals do, or we could condone murder, rape, and all sorts of unsavory behaviors.

Mikewlf337's avatar

Hunting and killing an animal for food is ok, ethical, and it is a good way to put meat in the freezer without spending alot of money. I am all for it. Hunting for the sport alone and not eating it is just stupid and unethical. If you kill an animal you must eat it. It is the only reason to hunt. It is also ok to kill an animal such as a groundhog if it destroys your vegetable garden because there is no way to stop them from eating everything that is there. It is also ok to hunt an animal if it is terrorizing people, pets, and livestock such as coyotes and other animals with the same behavior. Hunting an animal for sport and just leaving it there to rot is to me just sick. Eat it if your going to kill it.

Coloma's avatar

@J0E

I agree about the color blindedness analogy.

As I mentioned above, for the first time in 20 years of living in a wilderness area I am considering killing a couple of coyotes that have been terrorizing the animals on my property for the last 6 months. This is not something I would choose to address but, it is happening and I am keeping an open mind and researching many different aternatives as well.

I agree with @crisw, animals do not operate on the same ‘moral’ contnuuem as humans.

I also live with an abundance of mountain lions and came face to face with one behind my barn one night a few summers ago.

HUGE cat, HUGE..stared me down in the beam of my flashlight and then, silently turned and walked away into the brush.

Yes, it was a heart pounding moment but I did not share this with any of my neighbors as they would have freaked out.

I would much rather be taken down by a cougar than murdered by a serial killer.

I’m serious! lol

Aster's avatar

@Dutchess_III “Apples don’t have emotions.” Right. And neither do the apples’ mommies have emotions.

tragiclikebowie's avatar

Well, let’s get this out of the way first: I’m a vegetarian so obviously my ideals are not in line with any sort of hunting and eating animals.

That being said; don’t you think it’s better for these hunters to be eating and using every part of the animal than buying and eating factory farmed meat from Wal-Mart? Sure they could go find sustainable, local, grass fed, organic meat but hunting is probably more cost-effective and enjoyable for them. And in some parts of the country, it’s just not an option, especially with the recession.

As long as there is respect involved, I can tolerate it. If a hunter just goes out to blow the deer up and then mount it as a conquest, I do not tolerate it at all.

Coloma's avatar

@tragiclikebowie

Right, good point you make!

I mean ‘right’ about mounting the heads of ones’ trophies’ as mementos of the great white hunter…Gah, atrocious disrespect for the life taken!

Methinks their is some question of masculinity involved in that behavior.

Little dicks with big egos. lol

crisw's avatar

@tragiclikebowie

“That being said; don’t you think it’s better for these hunters to be eating and using every part of the animal than buying and eating factory farmed meat from Wal-Mart?”

Agreed, but it’s best to avoid the false dilemma.

Coloma's avatar

Admittedly I have a frozen baby shrew in my freezer the cats brought home. I like to look at him, he is the coolest little dude ever! lol

The only wildlife in my freezer is preserved for personal enjoyment and sharing with friends, such as the frozen flying squirrel I saved to prove they do exist in this area when nobody believed me. haha

JustmeAman's avatar

@Dutchess_III Boy did you misunderstand me. LOL I didn’t say anything about a bear? You just like to point fingers at anything you can find. Do you eat ANY MEAT at all @Dutchess_III?
If so you have NO say in the matter. I do not hunt but will defend the right of others to do so.

Winters's avatar

@crisw false dilemma? I agree partially with that.

Perhaps I hang with the “wrong” (or right) group of people but I’ve rarely seen a kill go to waste that was meant for food (for example one of my friends shot a deer that ran about a hundred yards and fell into a deep ravine, no one was in the mood to climb down and bring it back up bit by bit). If it’s too much for one of us, we don’t throw it away rather we share (had one instance when one guy gave a whole side of a deer to a homeless shelter).

From what I’ve seen and heard, many other hunters operate in a similar manner, but then again, I just might be with the “wrong” group.

@Dutchess_III In America people don’t need food???!!!!! Perhaps we wouldn’t if the rest of us weren’t pigs (scratch that, we’re not pigs, they at least eat all the food given to them, we throw away stuff when we have something we don’t need/want) and actually shared/ made sure we had enough to go around before we dove in for seconds and thirds. True, we don’t need food as badly as those living in third world countries, but clearly you’ve only seen suburban American, NEWSFLASH: not every American lives somewhere as disgusting as a city.

Aster's avatar

We have a “wildlife museum” and one of the table legs is made from the legs of an animal. A friend of mine almost vomited when she saw it. A local minister, defrocked, spends a lot of time getting his kill stuffed to mount in his den. You can spot his car parked outside this place of business. I feel sick.

crisw's avatar

@JustmeAman

“Do you eat ANY MEAT at all @Dutchess_III?
If so you have NO say in the matter.”

Actually, she does.

The validity of an ethical argument must be based on the argument itself, not those who espouse it.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

I’ve never hunted, and I gave up fishing, too, when I was 16 and would have had to pay for a $5 annual license, because “it just wasn’t worth that much to me”. Some of my in-laws are avid hunters and fishermen, both, and I have other reasons for not being great supporters of them—aside from the hunting and fishing. So I’m not an apologist for hunters, which is a preface for what I’m about to say.

I continue to be astonished by the essential small-mindedness of many (not all) of those who look down their noses at people who do things that they “would never!” do. Hunting is just a stand-in here for many other things. Just because one “would never!”, for whatever reasons seem reasonable and correct to the one who “would never!”, do such-and-such doesn’t by itself mean that others have the same views.

I don’t look down on hunters or revile them any more than I exalt or glorify them. It’s a blood sport that results in the death of an animal, yes. But the animal was going to die anyway—we all are.

I watched NFL football last night. That’s a blood sport of another kind. Sometimes these debates are, too.

To each his own, I say.

crisw's avatar

@Winters

I think you may have misunderstood me. A “false dilemma” is an argument that presents only two alternatives when, in reality, other alternatives exist. This argument was a false dilemma because there are alternatives other than hunting or supporting factory farming.

crisw's avatar

@CyanoticWasp

“Hunting is just a stand-in here for many other things. Just because one “would never!”, for whatever reasons seem reasonable and correct to the one who “would never!”, do such-and-such doesn’t by itself mean that others have the same views.”

The difference here from most other situations is that the death of a sentient being is involved, which gives the issue ethical bearing that, say, watching NASCAR races doesn’t have.

“But the animal was going to die anyway—we all are.”

So I may hunt you for sport?

We all are indeed “going to die anyway.” But that is no excuse for unethical behavior. Otherwise, we could rationalize torture and murder.

“I watched NFL football last night. That’s a blood sport of another kind.”

One in which the participants chose to participate. The hunted animal was given no such choice.

Winters's avatar

@crisw Yep, I read your response wrong (I loathe insomnia), my apologies about that, but then again, what other real choice do we meat eaters have? And don’t say go vegetarian.

Aster's avatar

Go vegetarian. lol @crisw Great points.

tragiclikebowie's avatar

@crisw I gave the other option of eating sustainable, organic, grass-fed, local meat but like I said, it’s just not an option for some people. There is another option, which is going veg, but preaching that to meat eaters doesn’t really get you anywhere. Are there any other options that you had in mind?

JustmeAman's avatar

There is NOTHING wrong with eating meat or hunting. If you want to be vegetarian then do so but meat is good and has lots of protein.

crisw's avatar

@Winters

” And don’t say go vegetarian.”

Why not? It’s the ethical choice. Of course what happens in the real world is different from the rarefied world of ethics, but if one tries to make ethical behavioral choices, it is the obvious alternative.

JustmeAman's avatar

I used to raise rabbits for food and they are really good tasting. They actually taste better than chicken.

Winters's avatar

@crisw As a borderline nihilist, the argument of “ethics” and “morals” means nothing to me.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@JustmeAman “There is NOTHING wrong with eating meat or hunting. If you want to be vegetarian then do so but meat is good and has lots of protein.” – Funny, I find plenty wrong with both, ‘good’ is subjective, complete protein can be found elsewhere and even if you need to eat meat, your choice doesn’t necessitate hunting.

crisw's avatar

@tragiclikebowie

It’s a difficult question because it contrasts what is truly ethical with what is probably realistic. I always assume, in such discussions, that we’re looking for whether or not a practice is ethical, even if people may not always then do what is ethical. It’s very, very common that we know what is right but don’t do what is right; we are all very morally inconsistent beings :>)

Because of this, while I recognize that one practice may be “better” than another, if both practices have moral issues it’s uncomfortable to seem to condone one. So, while eating organic meat from a small family farm is “better” than eating factory-farmed meat, both are ultimately ethically insupportable, from my point of view.

JustmeAman's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir That doesn’t make hunting wrong and in fact that is how we used to survive and we will have to again soon.

tragiclikebowie's avatar

@crisw I agree with you, actually. I was just trying to be realistic rather than focusing on the ethics of the question.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@JustmeAman What doesn’t make hunting wrong? What makes it right? How we ‘used to survive’ does not have a relationship to hunting for sport nor do your conjectures about the future.

JustmeAman's avatar

What I said Nothing wrong with hunting and many do it and will keep doing it. I don’t hunt but I do like to fish. LOL

Coloma's avatar

I eat very little red meat of any kind, some chicken and fish, but not much and do buy organic and free range and local.

While I do consume some animal products I do so minimally and I also keep and have kept many farm animals as well loved pets and would never do them in for food.

It’s all about balance and I am secure that I do and have done my part in keeping cruelty based industry a very small part of my lifestyle.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@JustmeAman I was asking for clarification – you did not provide it. I did not ask whether your hunt or fish. Anytime you’re ready to provide any a statement of substance, I will respond to you.

JustmeAman's avatar

What is a statement of substance. LOL

Winters's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir current research says that by the year 2050, we’ll need two Earths to sustain the intake of the human population. Since we don’t have a second Earth, @JustmeAman may be closer to the truth about us needing to go back to how we used to survive again than most people care to believe.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@JustmeAman You tell me.
@Winters That may be so and is a good topic for discussion. However, we are currently discussing whether hunting for sport (not to sustain humanity) is sadistic or ethical. Pretending that hunting is indicative of how we may need to sustain the Earth in the future is ridiculous (not saying that’s what you’re doing.)

JustmeAman's avatar

There is nothing morally, ethically or in anyway wrong with hunting. One would have to know the hunters heart to make a judgement on it. Are there some that kill just for the pleasure. I would bet there are and I would not support that.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@JustmeAman If you would not support that, does that not mean you find something ‘morally, ethically or anyway’ wrong with it?

JustmeAman's avatar

Only if the heart of the hunter is in the kill and the kill alone. Then yes I find it offensive. But have you ever seen the killing they do at the meat factories or went through on a tour of how they produce and package the meat?

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@JustmeAman I don’t need to, I detest the meat industry. And I find it unnecessary to debate about hunting with responses about food choices – we need to keep it on topic. Eating is a necessity, hunting for sport isn’t. Whether you think eating meat is a problem is a different conversation.

Winters's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir well since @Dutchess_III went off topic herself and brought in food in a later response, I think it’s fair game now. lol

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Winters I think it is okay to bring in food to say that hunting for survival is necessary since it results in food for those who need to survive. Other than that, it is not my trajectory on this conversation because I find that the hunting debate becomes a meat eating debate and the meat eating debate has no end.

Coloma's avatar

Well folks,.I’ll pop back by later and see where this ends up, I’ve said enough, just babbling now. lol

Time to go tend my critters and see if the coyotes tampered with the netting on the fences. ;-)

kenmc's avatar

Answered before reading what I assume is a clusterfuck of answers

Hunting should never be done for sport. Period. And by sport, I mean for trophy. Hunting should only be done if you’re going to eat the animal you’ve killed.

The reason people hunt for food instead of getting it from a grocery store is because it’s much healthier.

Hunting is also environmentally positive. Where I live, if white tail deers were not hunted, they’d boom in population. That means for one thing, there would be a lot more starving deer, which seems like a lot worse way to die that instant death from a bullet. And on top of that, a lot less humans would die/be injured from hitting deer with their cars… which is a problem.

And now it’s time to read this shit and see what I’ve gotten into.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@kenmc you haven’t gotten into any shit. You are completely right. Anyone who argues with that is just an idiot who wants everyone to change to their way of life. What are they going to do? All they can do is annoy you incessantly with their self righteous lectures about how you should be just like them and how they have it all figured out and live a perfect life. Don’t worry about their whining. It’s not enough to just throw their 2 cents in and agree to disagree and move on. They believe that people actually have to change to their point of view. I have had this discussion before. My morals and ethics are fine and I feel no guilt in hunting an animal for food.

crisw's avatar

@kenmc

“Hunting is also environmentally positive. Where I live, if white tail deers were not hunted, they’d boom in population.”

Where do you live?

And, where you live, are predators protected?

Most hunters resort to the overpopulation argument without addressing the flip side. If overpopulation really were their main concern, they should be first in line to draft legislation to protect coyotes, bears, wolves, bobcats and mountain lions. Yet hunting groups routinely, persistently and consistently oppose any such legislation.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Mikewlf337 I think no one here has whined or tried to change your beliefs or ways of living. Repeating how your morals and ethics are fine and something having to do with guilt is overkill – makes me think that perhaps you’ve got more emotions involved in this than you think you’re letting on.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir funny how you think you can assume so much about me just from reading something I posted on fluther. I feel no guilt. When I see the animal I’m hunting I see meat. I don’t see how my comment was overkill. Maybe you just assume too much about a person you never met.

kenmc's avatar

@crisw I live in mid-MI.

I have no idea if predators are protected. We don’t have very many coyotes, bears, wolves, bob cats, or mountain lions. We do have a surplus of white tail deer, though. And no one I know hunts predatory game here, so I am not sure if I’d support it.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@crisw Last time I checked most hunters support pretection for predatory animals if they are endangered species. If there are too many of them they have to be controlled because they are a threat to humans, pets, and livestock.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Mikewlf337 Maybe you project too much on people’s conversation that has nothing to do with making anyone feel guilty. My comment, btw, was conversational and I didn’t mean for you to take it in a defensive way.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@crisw if you don’t think overpopulation is a good reason for hunting than you are turning a blind eye to the problems caused by it. Hitting a deer will destroy your vehicle and can kill you. There more deer there are in an area the greater the chances.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

@crisw Federal and state laws prevent you and me from hunting each other, and from hunting any animal “out of season” or in violation of bag limits. If you want to include deer on the list of “not to be hunted” animals, along with eagles and various other protected species, there is a way to lobby the state to achieve that end. Go ahead and try. (Politics—another blood sport. And we don’t always choose the outcomes we get from that, either, do we?)

If your ethics prohibit you from killing “sentient beings”, then that is your ethos, and you are welcome to it. I’d defend your right not to follow your conscience and not think any less of you for choosing it.

Devout Buddhists won’t even kill many non-sentient beings. A very devout Buddhist wouldn’t kill a fly or a mosquito. Does that give them the right to look upon you as some kind of savage because (presumably) you would kill a bug that annoyed you? (For the record, I don’t believe that one would look down on you or disparage you in any way… just as they don’t look down on or disparage hunters and fishermen.)

crisw's avatar

@kenmc

“We don’t have very many coyotes, bears, wolves, bob cats, or mountain lions. ”

That’s because hunters killed most of them :>(

Coyotes are unprotected vermin in MI, bears and bobcats are hunted. Wolves are protected- for now- but no one expects this to last forever and hunting groups are itching to kill wolves.

crisw's avatar

@Mikewlf337

if you really want to learn about predator hunting, how badly it disrupts the environment, and how unnecessary it is, read this great essay.

crisw's avatar

@Mikewlf337

“if you don’t think overpopulation is a good reason for hunting than you are turning a blind eye to the problems caused by it.”

You are missing my point entirely.

Most states manage deer to encourage a surplus so that hunters have targets to shoot at. Ecologically sound management would rule such practices- as well as others, such as predator hunting, winter feeding grounds and habitat management to boost deer numbers- to be insane.

crisw's avatar

@CyanoticWasp

What is legal and what is ethical are two entirely different and not necessarily compatible things.

As far as ethical relevancy- I believe that any truly valid ethical system must be coherent and consistent. I do not believe that all of the ethical systems that humans have created are equal in this respect, and that it is possible to declare an ethical system invalid. Not all of them are created equal.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

@crisw

So, “who decides” which ethical systems are valid and which are not? Surely not “majority rule”, or else your stance would have been declared invalid and passed by.

My intent was to point out that there are both legal and ethical reasons for doing or not doing things. Legal reasons for you and me not to hunt each other, even if our ethics permitted it, and ethical reasons why even your viewpoint may be considered as “uncultured” as you apparently consider hunting to be.

Response moderated (Personal Attack)
crisw's avatar

@CyanoticWasp

In brief, anyone applying logic can decide whether an ethical system is valid or not.

Is it consistent? That is, does it treat morally equal situations equally?

Is it coherent? Do its conclusions follow in a rational and logical manner from supported premises?

So, for example, an ethic favoring prejudice is invalid because it’s treating morally equivalent individuals in an inconsistent manner.

Response moderated (Off-Topic)
Response moderated (Off-Topic)
CyanoticWasp's avatar

@crisw

You continue to sidestep the questions I put to you. Who makes the decisions about “moral equivalence”? If a person has a belief system that makes out members of other races to be “moral inferiors” to members of their own race, then are prejudice, chauvinism or even rape, slavery and murder okay?

As a matter of fact, when it comes to “moral equivalence”, that’s what law is based on. “We” as a political group make laws about what is and is not “moral” and legal to kill, and when, and how, and in what numbers. It’s moral for Japanese whalers to kill whales, moral for Afghan tribesmen to play polo with a sheep carcass, moral for Spaniards and Mexicans to fight bulls in an arena, etc. It’s not moral or legal for Americans to do those things.

You’re welcome to your ethics, but they are not necessarily superior to the ethical choices of others—whether or not you agree with the fundamentals or ‘coherence’ of others’ beliefs. You might even convince people to share your ethical leanings; that has happened in the past, and is one of the reasons why we no longer have legal slavery in this country—and no longer hunt bison and Indians for sport. It’s unlikely that you will convince many people by disparaging them, however (you’re not alone in trying that tactic). The trick is to set a better example and become a model to emulate.

Winters's avatar

I’m going to support @Mikewlf337 about population control, sure, you could try reintroducing predatory animals to the area but that won’t help with all the animals that you can have population problems with. Wild boars for example, as I stated in my first response, pose a tremendous threat to their surroundings if there are too many of them, they can turn a meadow into a plowed field, sure, good for the farmer, but not good for nature. And it takes a lot of wolves to take care of a lot of wild boars, they fight back and they’re vicious.

crisw's avatar

@CyanoticWasp

I don’t think I sidestepped the question at all; I addressed it directly. Prejudice is illogical because there is no morally relevant difference between the races.

And, again, stating that something is legal does not make it ethical.

Also, how am I disparaging anyone? Unlike some others on this thread, I have not resorted to name-calling. There is a difference between disparagement and disagreement. Asking someone to defend their position isn’t disparagement (it is, in fact, what you are doing to me and I don’t consider it disparaging in the slightest.) Likewise, pointing out real flaws in an argument is not disparagement. It’s possible to debate ethics without attacking people.

MissAnthrope's avatar

[Mod says:] Let’s sheath the claws, folks. Keep it civil and remember that personal attacks are not permitted.

crisw's avatar

@Winters

The situation here is somewhat different because the wild boars are not native. When a non-native species with no natural controls damages the environment- and therefore, all of the residents of that environment- then control actions may be necessary (under the principle that the only morally defensible reason to cause harm to another sentient being is to prevent an equal or greater harm). But those actions need to be both humane and effective.

Sport hunting- especially some of the grotesque manifestations of “pig sticking” with knives and pit bulls- is neither. In fact, sport hunters often work against what is good for the environment. In Hawaii, where wild pigs were endangering entire ecosystems, the group that fought the hardest against eliminating the pigs was the hunters- they didn’t want to have their “sport” taken away.

Winters's avatar

@crisw cases like that I guess just depend on location, the places I’ve hunted them, we want to reduce them to a reasonable size, (not eliminate them, some of the farmers are smart or just lazy and use them to “plow” their fields).

CyanoticWasp's avatar

@crisw
Re: “disparaging”—you’re right. In looking over the thread it seems that I was conflating your arguments against hunting with some of the others that had preceded it. You are correct: none of your remarks has been the least bit disparaging of hunters. My apology for the misreading.

But we do seem to be going round and round regarding “ethics”, “morals” and law. To my way of thinking, “morals” are “ethics” codified and morals are the bases for laws. I agree with your statement that ”[p]rejudice is illogical because there is no morally relevant difference between the races” but that only applies to places where that morality has been adopted.

There are places in the world where it is not immoral to pre-judge people based on race or caste or gender or other externalities and accidents of appearance and birth (or choice). According to your ethics (and mine) it is still unethical for us to harbor biases based on these factors… but it’s not immoral in the societies where it happens.

We each own our individual ethics. As political groups we negotiate to create moral codes, and the moral codes evolve into law.

Mikewlf337's avatar

all this talk about hunting makes me want to go out in the woods and bag a deer this weekend wish me luck people!

Winters's avatar

@Mikewlf337 Good luck and good hunting. Go get yourself some tail! ...Uh, that came out wrong… lol

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Mikewlf337 I wish the deer all the luck. BTW, your morals are simply shining through that statement, you don’t sound bitter at all.

crisw's avatar

@CyanoticWasp

I think the base difference here is that I don’t see morality as relative, and I pretty typically argue against moral relativism. Probably a discussion topic for a different day as it’s pretty far afield here!

Winters's avatar

@crisw you’re on, dibs on the nihilistic perspective.

Coloma's avatar

I will have to agree with at least some of what @kenmc say’s about deer and vehicular incidents.

I am on the west coast in the Sierra Nevada foothills and there is no shortage of black tailed deer around here. I see at least one if not 2–3 roadkill deer every single day of my life.

I have had two run into my car and ran off but have been VERY lucky to not have a more serious accident. I have several freinds who have had multiple deer related accidents over the years, it happens EVERY DAY within a 20 mile radius of my home.

I love the deer but they do pose serious road hazards.

I have almost quit driving at night unless it is work related ( coming home late ) or occasional social obligations/invitations.

I drove all the way home last Thurs. night at about 40mph at midnight, deer in the headlights everywhere!

Scary!

The deer hunters around here are just looking for the meat and what few are taken make virtually zero impact on the population in my opinion.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Coloma Agreed, it’s not like people hunt primarily to keep the deer population in check because they care so much about the risk of vehicular accidents – it’s just a point they make, as an afterthought, to convince themselves and others that their selfish activity has a positive impact of any kind whatsoever. I don’t like hunting for sport but I hate even more when a person who hunts makes up reasons for doing it that are clearly false – if you want to kill and you like the kill, just say so, for crying out loud, and be done with it.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir You don’t understand our culture and from the looks of things you don’t want to. You have no idea what goes through the heads of the majority of hunters. If you did you wouldn’t label us as selfish and you wouldn’t question our morals and ethics.Dispite what you think we are not sociopaths. I don’t hunt to avoid vehicular accidents. I hunt because I enjoy hunting for food. It’s rewarding to me. I don’t really care if you like it or not. If people listen to everyone who wants to rid the world of things we will have nothing left.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Mikewlf337 So you speak for all the hunters out there? Really? I think it is a selfish activity in every sense of the word, I didn’t say whether I think doing something selfish is inherently wrong, morally speaking because I actually don’t think doing selfish things is always wrong. However, in this case, I do think it’s unethical in many ways but you don’t have to agree with me and I don’t have to agree with you. If you don’t really care whether I like it or not, then why are we having this conversation? Obviously, you need to keep harping on your reasons. As to your last and quite vague sentence, I want to rid the world of things that harm it. Hunting for sport is hardly doing anyone other than you any good. Above, you joked about how this thread makes you want to go and kill a deer…is that the kind of thing you find rewarding, was that for food?

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Harping? Aren’t you harping us because we do something you are against? You wan’t to rid the world of things you are against. To me that is a very arrogant and self righteous thing to do. You and crisw harp on issues like this all the time. Omnivores, hunters, etc have no problem with vegans. It’s the vegans that have a problem with them. Your life your and it’s your decision how to live it. This is our lives and it’s our decision how to live ours. Try to change the world is a very selfish thing in my opinion because it means forcing others to change.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Mikewlf337 Point 1: Saying ‘I want to rid the world of things that harm it’ =/= ‘I want to rid the world of things I’m against’ – if you can’t see that, you’ve got bigger problems than me. Point 2: you making this about my veganism (which, in this thread, never came up) is further proof that you are incapable of having an unemotional conversation about your hunting. Point 3: please, if you can be so kind, point to me a word or a phrase or a comment of mine in the above thread where I, Simone, forced you, @Mikewlf337, to change or told you to not hunt.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir you said on numorous times that hunting is wrong. How is it wrong? Killing animals for food is not wrong. It is only wrong if you don’t eat them or overhunt them to the point the are extict or near it. This is the food chain. You want to rid the world of things that harm it. How does hunting harm the world?

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Mikewlf337 Um, actually I believe I’ve asked @JustmeAman what makes it wrong or right. And if you read another statement of mine above, I state that hunting for survival for food is not what I am considering in this question because the question asks about hunting for sport. And yes, as a biologist, I am aware of what a food chain is – hunting harms animals and therefore harms the world. I know I am so fucking mushy, why don’t you just shoot me for food too like you’ve got nothing better to eat other than deer.

crisw's avatar

@Mikewlf337

“Killing animals for food is not wrong.”

On what basis do you make this assertion?

I believe that it is wrong to harm another sentient being unless that harm is necessary to avert an equal or greater harm. I haven’t seen you make any argument that harming another sentient being is ethical. That would be a starting point- why do you think it’s ethical?

Killing an animal for food is ending the life of a sentient being. It is not necessary to avert a greater harm (unless you are starving or otherwise have no other source of food.) iIt doesn’t matter that you eat the animal- you are still violating its right to continue the existence it enjoys.

Aethelwine's avatar

@Mikewlf337 Take comfort knowing who will survive when society goes to hell and there are no plants to eat in the winter. ;)

tigress3681's avatar

I think you may be right about the legal sadism in that the type of person who would want to hunt an animal for non food related purposes, regardless of legal issues regarding population control would need to be somewhat sadistic.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@crisw since when do you get to decide what is ethical and what is not. Killing animals for food is part of the food chain. Every living thing on this planet is part of the food chain (just ask grizzlyman) and there is nothing wrong with it. If I got killed by a bear or whatever and eaten I would hope that it wouldn’t be killed in vengeance by other people because it did nothing wrong by trying to feed itself . This is the way the world works. I don’t make the rules and I am thankful that you don’t.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Mikewlf337 Do you think you make rules for your life, however? Because no one is forcing you to hunt, it’s a choice you make. Just like no one is forcing me to be a vegan.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir I hunt because I can and I want to. I already said why it’s not wrong. I already said I hunt for food and I don’t just hunt them for sport.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Mikewlf337 Right, so you do make the rules.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir I live my life the way I see fit. I don’t shove my views down the throats of others.

augustlan's avatar

[mod says] Remember to keep it civil, folks.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Mikewlf337 Same here. Thanks for the conversation.

WestRiverrat's avatar

If hunters didn’t kill some of the deer, the deer population would crash in a few years.

Man has removed most of the natural predators for deer. If man does not now step in and take the place of those predators, the deer population would explode to the point where the food supply will be destroyed and the deer population will crash.

When that happens deer will die slowly of disease or starvation.

crisw's avatar

@Mikewlf337

“since when do you get to decide what is ethical and what is not”

I don’t. Rules of logic do. Something either is consistent and coherent or it isn’t. This isn’t just a personal whim or an arbitrary decision here.

You- or anyone else- are fully capable of making an argument that something is or is not ethical, that can be judged by rules of logic.

I gave you a glimpse of the logic behind my reasoning. What is yours?

“Killing animals for food is part of the food chain.”

Naturalistic fallacy. We can’t condone any behavior simply because it’s “natural” or some other anmal does it, otherwise we could also condone rape, murder, and eating your own offspring. Humans are the only animals that can make fully reasoned moral decisions- to me, this means that we aso have the obligation to do so.

crisw's avatar

@WestRiverrat

False dilemma. As I have said over and over again in this thread, a logical first step, if we really care about ecological balance, would be to stop hunting predators for sport. As long as predators are treated as vermin, competitors, or trophies, we can hardy say that we’ve done all we can to keep ecosystems intact and functioning.

crisw's avatar

@Mikewlf337

“I live my life the way I see fit. I don’t shove my views down the throats of others.”

I just have to point out something you seem to be missing here.

I believe that the lives of animals count for something.

If this is true, then we can’t call restrictions on what we do to animals “shoving our views down someone’s throat.” This isn’t a simple choice that negatively impacts no one. It’s a life or death matter for the animals involved. It is an ethical matter, and one that requires justification.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@crisw That is your opinion. Like the old saying goes. Opinions are like a$$holes and everyone has one.There isn’t any reason why I should hold yours above anyones elses. You obviously put your opinion above anyone who doesn’t agree with you. It’s not like I go out everyday and shoot a bunch of animals for fun. I love animals believe it or not and just because I don’t live my life to your standards doesn’t give you the right to label me as unethical. I am not missing your point. I just don’t agree with your point.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir your welcome. Believe it or not I do have some respect for you even though we disagree with each other on many things.

WestRiverrat's avatar

@crisw Where that has been tried, it works for a while. When the kids can’t play outside because there is a Mt Lion sunning itself on your deck eating your pet poodle, would you have the same opinion?

Mikewlf337's avatar

@WestRiverrat I was going to say that lol.

crisw's avatar

@Mikewlf337

You just don’t seem to be getting it. It’s not just “opinion,” and this isn’t an issue that is decidable by “opinion.” There is a tremendous difference between simple opinion and a rational argument for or against an ethical position.

This isn’t an issue like whether to have Wheaties or Trix for breakfast. it isn’t just a matter of personal choice. It’s an ethical decision.

@WestRiverrat
Did you read the link on predator hunting and its consequences that I posted above? Also, where has it “ever been tried?”

WestRiverrat's avatar

Black hills of SD.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@crisw it is your opinion. You hold your opinion in such high regards that you think you have the right to decide what is ethical and what is not.

crisw's avatar

@WestRiverrat

What, exactly, are you referring to? I certainly don’t know of any places in South Dakota where predator hunting was banned, and I am interested in learning.

And did you read that link? It’s a good one.

WestRiverrat's avatar

Lion hunting was banned until 2005. That changed when there were lions showing up in downtown Rapid City with some regularity, but the main reason the season was opened. the bighorn sheep and the Mtn goat populations in SD have become endangered.

I read the link, it obviously was not written by anyone with practical experience of predators.

kenmc's avatar

@crisw I don’t know anyone that hunts those animals and I’ve never heard of anyone eating them outside of desperate situations. As I said in my original post, I don’t support hunt that isn’t for food.

crisw's avatar

@WestRiverrat

I don’t think that’s an accurate depiction of what has happened in South Dakota.

First of all, mountain lion hunting was not allowed because, before recent times, there were almost no mountain lions in South Dakota; just occasional transients. It wasn’t like there were tremendous populations of unhunted cats in the past.

The 2010–2015 mountain lion management plan has been heavily criticized. Many advocates claim it will decimate the mountain lion population and is not based on good science.

The cause of the Black Hills mountain goat decline is not known, but may be due to recreational rock-climbers as much as to mountain lions. The mountain goats are not native animals and were introduced primarily for hunting purposes. Mountain goats can actually compete with bighorn populations. So, if cougars are being killed to increase goat populations, it’s an example of something that is not ecologically sound.

As far as the bighorn- which are also non-native (although a subspecies, driven extinct by hunting, once did roam the Black Hills, the sheep today are all transplants for hunting purposes) – like bighorns throughout the US, the primary threat to them is more likely to be diseases spread by domestic sheep (another case here) rather than lions. A sensible first step is banning all domestic sheep grazing on public lands near bighorns- but this creates a political firestorm. It’s a lot easier to blame the cougars…

WestRiverrat's avatar

The people that live here don’t believe your advocates. The animal rights activists that have never set foot in the Hills are the ones that linked the sheep and goats to the Mt Lion hunt.

The public land where the bighorn populations roam here has been off limits to domestic sheep since Mt Rushmore was carved.

If we can’t reintroduce bighorn sheep into the Black hills, why is it ok to reintroduce non native wolves into Yellowstone?

crisw's avatar

@WestRiverrat

It’s a very common sidestep to discount positions you don’t like because they are “from those dern furriners.” Something is either scientifically correct or it isn’t. If it’s correct, it doesn’t matter if the person making the statement is from the Black Hills or the moon.

“The public land where the bighorn populations roam here has been off limits to domestic sheep since Mt Rushmore was carved.”

I provided links to two stories of South Dakota bighorn populations where pneumonia outbreaks were tied directly to sheep.

And there is plenty of public-lands grazing going on in the Black Hills.

crisw's avatar

@WestRiverrat

Oops, missed this-

“If we can’t reintroduce bighorn sheep into the Black hills, why is it ok to reintroduce non native wolves into Yellowstone?”

I never said they could not be reintroduced. However, I did say that they were reintroduced primarily for hunting purposes- which means that they are managed as if that is their ultimate value- which means that cougars killing their natural prey are given less value than hunters.

Wolves were native to Yellowstone. And they were reintroduced in an attempt to restore balance, not to placate hunters.

WestRiverrat's avatar

When are you going to advocate to reintroduce Grizzly bear into southern California? When you do that then you can tell me how to run my hills.

It is also very easy for people that live in ivory towers to present their theories as proven scientific fact. They seldom take into consideration what effect their theory has on the people that actually have to live with the results.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Holy crap you guys! I feel like I threw a lit stick of dynamite into a crowd and ran away!

To address all those who took my words out of context and pretended I meant that American’s don’t need food of any kind. What I said was “I don’t have a problem with hunting if you and/or your family genuinely need food. But no one in America does. It’s done for sport.” Every American has all the food they need. If they don’t have the money to buy it the government gives them food stamps. If anyone says they hunt just for the food, they’re lying. They do it because they enjoy it.

And as to the fact that I do eat meat…well. Do you think there is a difference between someone who opposes the death penalty and a person who could actually, physically carry it out? It’s awful. Killing cows is awful too, but what kind of person can look a living animal in the eye and takes its life? I couldn’t work in a slaughter house either for that reason. I don’t think most people could, but they still eat meat.

@WestRiverrat..since you’re closest to me, I’ll address your comment. I believe there is a time and a place for killing animals. I could kill a coyote that threatened me or the kids. I could kill a dog who threatened my family. But I wouldn’t enjoy it. Enjoying it is the key word here…I can understand enjoying the hunt, the planning, etc. But what kind of person would actually enjoy the killing part?

kenmc's avatar

@Dutchess_III Most of what’s sold to us as food barely meets that definition. And where the hell would you buy venison in a store? Millions upon millions of cows are raised in deplorable contions every year to be born into food. They’re fed the same food until they die (sometimes they mix in other cows). A deer in the wild is eating natural foods, lives a natural, animal life, ect ect…

So basically, it’s okay to raise cows specifically to be eaten and its okay to treat them horribly because you can buy their meat at a store? No thank you.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Mikewlf337 I never thought otherwise.

Winters's avatar

@Dutchess_III There are plenty of people who are to proud to go in for food stamps, my Dad and Mom are among them.

And I actually feel pretty damn good when I put down a wild boar, I’m doing nature lovers, and nature a favor. People are just wired differently, some like me enjoy the hunt all the way up to the part were you realize you’re 10 miles from you truck and the deer you just shot decided to make a leap of faith into a ravine that seemed to have been conveniently placed/magically appeared. If we were all the same, how boring would that be? We couldn’t have a nice debacle like the one here.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@kenmc First, there is nothing special about venison. You can’t buy rattlesnake meat in the grocery store either. It’s no big loss. Per raising the cow just for meat: what would you think of a person who worked at a slaughter house saying that the favorite part of his job is killing the cow and watching it die. Would you consider that sadistic?

@Winters So, do your parents hunt for their food?

Coloma's avatar

@Dutchess_III

It’s a spectator sport now. lol

kenmc's avatar

@Dutchess_III If you know someone who’s favorite part of hunting is watching the hunted animals die, I feel bad for you. And venison, imo, is much better than beef. It’s leaner and healthier. It tastes better, too. And since you’re a grocery store beef eater, you put more to an animals suffering than you’d like to believe.

Winters's avatar

@Dutchess_III the times my Dad was out of a job and money was especially tight, he did go out and get a deer.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Coloma No kiddin’! I created a monster. Should we hunt it down and KILL it??

Coloma's avatar

I feel like I am at the coliseum release the lions!

Trillian's avatar

” Every American has all the food they need. If they don’t have the money to buy it the government gives them food stamps.” Wrong. Just plain incorrect. Ridiculous no matter how you look at it. Just an absurd statement. Lots of hungry people all over Amrica.
“And as to the fact that I do eat meat…well.Do you think there is a difference between someone who opposes the death penalty and a person who could actually, physically carry it out?” What? So as long as it isn’t you pulling the switch or trigger, it’s ok.
“But what kind of person would actually enjoy the killing part?” A person who is not you. Just because you don’t understand something that another person does does not give you any sort of moral ascendancy here. I don’t hunt, see no point in it and could go the rest of my life not holding a weapon and be just as happy. I don’t expect everyone else to feel the same. There are things that I like to do that some others would not enjoy. Why do people have such a hard time with this? You cannot expect to have everyone feel the same as you. And to say that your ethics are somehow more valid or correct is the height of arrogance. You don’t want to hunt, don’t do it. Nobody cares. Do NOT stand around talking about people who do, and saying “They all think” ... this, that or anything else. You don’t know what the hell they think. And it’s none of your business.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Trillian I have a tangential question for you: though what people do in their life involving themselves isn’t anyone’s business, aren’t animals everyone’s business?

Dutchess_III's avatar

@kenmc Well, it obviously doesn’t bother them watching it die. They go to great lengths, spend lotsa money to achieve the end result of watching something die. And no matter what their inner ego says, I’ll bet very, very few hunters are really good enough shots to hit a part of the animal that will kill it instantly. So they not only get to watch it die, they get to watch it suffer. Joy joy.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Trillian Do you have an example of a person going hungry in America?

Coloma's avatar

Anyone care for some coconut M&M’s.?

Winters's avatar

@Dutchess_III come over to Stockton California, drive North on I-5 coming up from the southern end of town, if you look to your right, you should be able to see a shit load of tents and no, they aren’t taking a family vacation next to the highway. And i bet they’re hungry.

Trillian's avatar

@Dutchess_III How bout you pop by any soup kitchen in the country and ask the people there if they have any food stamps. Or a stove to cook food on. Or a fridge to put food in.

J0E's avatar

@Dutchess_III You have got to be kidding me. Poor people in America may be better off than the poor in other countries, but to suggest that no one is hungry in America…that’s just preposterous. I don’t even…

It must really be amazing to live in your fantasy world. A world where no one is hungry and everyone has enough food.

kenmc's avatar

@Dutchess_III The majority of prep for hunting is making it so one can kill the animal as quickly as possible.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@J0E I just don’t think that’s possible. It’s possible that there are Americans who aren’t taking advantage of their options for whatever reason, but no one here who needs food goes without. When was the last time you read of a kid starving to death in American that didn’t involve child abuse? And to what @Trillian is saying, if there are homeless people in shelters eating from soup kitchens they obviously aren’t out hunting animals to live. As she said, they don’t have a fridge to put it in anyway. Hunters are well fed Americans just having “fun.”

J0E's avatar

@Dutchess_III…why do you think soup kitchens exist?! People are hungry and in need of food! You are being absolutely ridiculous.

crisw's avatar

@Trillian

“There are things that I like to do that some others would not enjoy. Why do people have such a hard time with this?”

In the case of hunting, as I’ve pointed out several times, it’s because hunting harms another sentient being. It’s not just a personal preference. I have a very hard time with people harming another sentient being for pleasure, whether that being be human or animal.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@JOE! My point is, NO ONE IN AMERICA HAS TO HUNT FOR FOOD! The people who wind up on the streets and in soup kitchens find themselves there because of mental illness, drug addiction or alcoholism. Drug addiction and alcoholism are choices that a person makes. Mental illness is another story, but all of that is beside the point. An American can be dirt poor, they can be unemployed, but if that’s ALL they are, then they get food stamps. No one in America has to hunt for food.

J0E's avatar

@Dutchess_III Your exact words were: “I don’t have a problem with hunting if you and/or your family genuinely need food. But no one in America does.”

Also, you should go to a soup kitchen, and you’ll see for yourself that it’s not all drug addicts and mental patients.

Seaofclouds's avatar

@Dutchess_III We may not have to hunt for food, but why shouldn’t we if we are willing to do so? Any way we come by getting meat to eat harms a living animal. So, the argument about hurting a living animal is really mute. If people are willing and able to get their own meat that isn’t full of who knows what like a lot of the meat is these days we buy at the grocery store, why shouldn’t they do it?

Either way, if I’m going to eat a steak, some animal is going to die so that I can eat that steak. I’d rather it be a deer that was out in the wild than a cow that was put through all kinds of inhumane conditions from birth until death. I know a lot of hunters that will donate meat to food banks. Are you willing to go out and buy a bunch of meat and give it to a food bank?

Coloma's avatar

Roasting a marshmallow now.

Aethelwine's avatar

@Dutchess_III I’m not mentally ill, drug addicted or an alcoholic. My husband’s pay check just doesn’t cut it sometimes. We’ve had to rely on food banks at churches in the past. Food stamps only go so far, especially for a family of five. Two teenage boys can eat quite a bit! A deer in the freezer sure can help.

Winters's avatar

@Dutchess_III Have you been paying attention to what’s been happening? What about people who were foreclosed on? Is it suddenly because they must have a mental illness or some sort of addiction?! Wow, just wow, for a teacher, I personally think that was a very very ignorant statement to make. And like I mentioned earlier, a lot of people hold onto pride dearly and could potentially be destroyed if they had to stoop to get food stamps. Sure, Pride comes before the Fall, but when that’s all you have left, do you let it go as well? And as I’ve stated before as well, the group of hunters that I’ve been around are very good when it comes to sharing with other people, one of which I know gave a whole side of a deer to a homeless shelter (it was a nice BBQ that he did for them).

Dutchess_III's avatar

@J0E The people in soup kitchens aren’t out hunting, are they. They can’t afford the SPORT.

@colma…Did you hunt that marshmallow down??? You SURE it was daid before you started roasting it???

@jonsblond Hey…I’m not insulting people who get food stamps. Not by a long shot. I received them for about 4 years because I was po’. I worked my butt off, but I was po’. But in my case, they gave me four times as much in food stamps as I, and my kids, would ever need in a month. I ate better on food stamps than I ever have. I’d buy things on food stamps that I can’t afford now.

O! JP is in the house!!

Aethelwine's avatar

@Dutchess_III The part about food stamps didn’t insult me one bit. It was that little part where you mentioned people that need help are either mentally ill, drug addicted or an alcoholic.

JeanPaulSartre's avatar

@jonsblond If we no longer know how to store food for the winter, all the hunting in the world will not help us. Animals are not available to hunt when there is no food for them. Animals eat plants. Plants keep better in the winter than meat in a “society went to hell” situation there wouldn’t be salt available to keep meat edible over the winter. Keeping meat would also make you a much more serious target for the predatory animals that are still about. Let alone bullets, maintenance oil for the firearm, etc etc… unless part of the “hunter skill-set” is how to cut and wrap your own arrows, arrowheads, bows and/or spear shafts, modern humans, meat eaters and vegans alike, will likely die of starvation. And definitely without the ability to store plants over winters.

Winters's avatar

@Dutchess_III you don’t need money to hunt, you just need a good, say, 6+ foot stick, some string/550 gut, and a little knowledge about how to make a small noose of some sort. Works like a charm.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Nooooooo @jonsblond. I was referring to homeless people. The people who avail themselves of soup kitchens. But….I admit I’m no expert on that front, either. That was just something I read, that the majority of homeless people have those issues or problems. At any rate, they get food.

Winters's avatar

@Dutchess_III try volunteering at a shelter and make that call, I dare you.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Winters And a license. And your 6’ stick better be legal or you’ll get major fines. The vast majority of people who hunt spend hundreds and thousands of dollars on their SPORT. It’s sport. That’s the point. No one in America hunts because they have to to survive.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Winters Re volunteering at a shelter: I’m open to education on the matter. All I know is what I’ve read. What have your experience at soup kitchens shown you?

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Winters The people who got foreclosed on simply lost their homes and had to move into an apartment! They didn’t suddenly have to start hunting for food!

JeanPaulSartre's avatar

I would agree @jonsblond that if hunting a deer helps feed your family, that’s survival hunting.

Winters's avatar

@Dutchess_III Most of them are NORMAL people who are just really really really down on their luck, a few addicts, or if they are, its because they’ve lost everything and turned to the bottle for some sort of solace. But many are actively seeking jobs trying to find a way out.
This comes from about 2 and a half years of experience.

And regarding the foreclosures, you don’t live somewhere that was all that heavy hit by the recession, do you? I’ve seen people i know at the shelter.

Trillian's avatar

” Hunters are well fed Americans just having “fun.”” Your ability to generalize and ovrsimplify things of which you know absolutely nothing is staggering.
” It’s possible that there are Americans who aren’t taking advantage of their options for whatever reason, but no one here who needs food goes without.” Is it possible that you really believe this? Really? Do you believe that people cannot get asistance becase thy make one dollar over the limit? Do you know how little a family has to be bringing in to qualify for assistance? Here is the criteria in KY:
Eligibility Criteria
Income eligibility criteria
Net income limit for family of 31 $16,608/year (FY 2007)
Gross income limit for family of 32 $21,588/year (FY 2007)

Treatment of child support income
Treatment of child support income3 Counted in full (FY 2007)

Asset eligibility criteria
Asset limit4 $2,000 (FY 2007)
Treatment of vehicles in asset test5 Aligned to TANF cash assistance rules (FY 2007)
http://www.nccp.org/profiles/KY_profile_29.html
“When was the last time you read of a kid starving to death in American that didn’t involve child abuse?” So, if you didn’t read about it or hear about it, it couldn’t have happened? Is that what you’re saying? Do you think that you are cognizant of everything that happens in this country? No one can go hungry without you knowing about it? It wasn’t on the news, therefore it did not happen?
@crisw your point about sentience is noted. I submit however, that predators hunt grazers. As I stated before, man has hunted since he came down out of the trees. There is an excitement in the stealth, the stalking of prey. It is primal. If you don’t want to hunt, then don’t. But this is America, the land of freedom. Aren’t you the same poeple who want gays to be free to marry? Equal rights for women? Why do you not feel that hunters should have rights? Are your cries for freedoms applied only to a select few? Is this not at all hypocritical seeming to you? Because you don’t agree with what hunters do. Oh. And how is that different from people who don’t agree with what you expound opposing you?
You are entitled to your opinion.
I don’t hunt. Don’t care if I never hold a weapon. But I don’t expect the rest of the planet to adhere to my moral and ethical code. Why do you?

Dutchess_III's avatar

@JeanPaulSartre Sure it would, @JeanPaulSartre. If it were necessary, I’d do the hunting myself. It’s the hunting for sport that I don’t understand.

@Winters I’ve owned this house since 99. Making the mortgage got tough at times, when my own finances took a dip here and there, but the fact is, I didn’t buy a house that I couldn’t afford in the end.

Aethelwine's avatar

@Dutchess_III Completely off topic, but fyi- I just lost my house to foreclosure, and it wasn’t a house we bought that we couldn’t afford. It was a crappy fixer upper we couldn’t fix up. Not everyone that lost their homes to foreclosure did it because they bought a house they couldn’t afford.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Trillian LOL! You don’t need to preach it at me! I know the numbers! Between 1995 and 1998 I grossed between $8,000 and $13,000 a year, with three kids and NO child support. One year I made $6 too much a month for my kids to qualify for Medicare. I understand that. But we never went hungry. If they’d cut off our food stamps, I’m pretty sure I’d have been buying lotsa beans and potatoes. Even if I’d wanted to hunt, I couldn’t afford to buy the gun or the license.

tragiclikebowie's avatar

@Dutchess_III Okay, you admitted you are a meat eater. How is you going to the supermarket or the restaurant and buying a steak ANY different from someone going out, killing a deer, and storing and eating it? No they don’t HAVE to hunt for meat unless they can’t afford it but they don’t HAVE to go to the store to buy some ground chuck either. You’re rationalizing without logically thinking about it. Either way, they’re eating meat. And in most cases, the hunter would have much greater respect for the animal than the people who herd the pigs into the pens to be crushed to death.

I don’t understand how you can admittedly be a meat eater and attack hunting so vigorously. Sport hunting to me is going out, killing the animal and not using it for food. This is wrong, yes. But how is it for sport if they’re going to kill, skin, butcher, store, and eat what they have just killed by themselves? It’s no different than going to the supermarket and buying pre-killed, skinned, butchered, packaged and refrigerated meat. Except worse because of all the fossil fuel it went into raising and shipping that animal cross-country.

Trillian's avatar

Trillian out. Enjoy your superiority.

crisw's avatar

@Trillian

“I submit however, that predators hunt grazers.”

I’ve talked about the naturalistic fallacy elsewhere in this thread. As we are beings capable of making ethical decisions, we cannot base what is right on what other animals, who do not have this moral capacity, do. If we did, we could also justify rape, murder and infanticide.

“There is an excitement in the stealth, the stalking of prey. It is primal.”

There was also no doubt the same excitement when people killed people from other tribes as a rite of passage or as part of their culture. That didn’t make it right. It;s also no doubt true of most serial killers. That doesn’t justify their behavior.

“Aren’t you the same poeple who want gays to be free to marry? Equal rights for women? Why do you not feel that hunters should have rights?”

Gay marriage harms no one. Equal rights for women harm no one. And both are mandated because to treat equally morally relevant situations differently is unjust.

Once again- hunting harms and kills animals. It is not the same as choosing which movie to see or what jeans to wear. It is not a morally empty act, and cannot be treated as such.

crisw's avatar

@Trillian

“Trillian out. Enjoy your superiority.”

Personally, I find it quite interesting- and rather frustrating- that so many people would rather use ad hominem arguments rather than actually attempt to construct a rational argument for what they advocate.

I don’t consider myself superior. I do feel that I, personally don’t want to hold an ethical view that I cannot rationally defend. I do expect people who espouse a view- rather or not it matches mine- to hold to the same standard. This isn’t superiority; it’s simply rationality. Asking people to actually logically defend a position they hold is hardly an untenable or overly demanding request.

Winters's avatar

Wow, nearly 200 responses, well good night folks, this was a fun little debacle. =D

Ivan's avatar

Killing things is bad.

Aethelwine's avatar

@Ivan Then put that carrot back in the ground.

Ivan's avatar

@jonsblond

Round and round in circles we go.

Seaofclouds's avatar

@Dutchess_III Why is buying meat from a grocery store when we know how badly animals are treated more ethical then killing our own meat and feeding our family with that instead of something from a slaughter house?

Aethelwine's avatar

@Ivan I need a dollar. The tooth fairy is broke. ;)

Mat74UK's avatar

Well after reading all the rants. I’m still going to shoot Rabbits with an air rifle and I imagine I’ll still enjoy it, I’ll also continue to eat them because I’ll not only still like the taste but I’ll know that the animal was treated with respect by myself and not just another number in an abottoir.

Trillian's avatar

@crisw
1. Predators hunt grazers. This is not a fallacy.
2. I was addressing @Dutchess_III when I said to enjoy her superiority. This is not an ad hominem attack. Look at all the fallacious argument she used about people not being hungry. Her willful ignorance about the state of affairs in America is what I was referring to. As long as she maintains that no one is hungry in America and by extension that on one needs to hunt she is attemping to mainain a moral superiority. And it is entirely beside the point. We live in a free country. If people want to go out and hunt geese or deer or whatever, they may. [Removed by Fluther]
3. You can say whatever you feel is wrong and I’m not going to argue it with you. As I said, you are entitled to your opinion. My only point is that you are not about to dictate the conscience of another person so why try?
4. Oh, and your statement “There was also no doubt the same excitement when people killed people from other tribes as a rite of passage or as part of their culture.” is bullshit. Let’s see some proof that killing another person from another “tribe” was part of any initiaion/soming of age rite. To what culure do you refer? Rites of passage, to my knowledge, did not include stalking and murder of another human being. An animal, maybe…Your use of the word ‘tribe’ lends a primitive feeling to the statement. What you describe sounds more like a modern day gang initiation to me.
5. And yes it is untenable. You assume the position of judge, as if you were appointed the keeper of someone else’s consciene. They owe you nothing, no explanations or anything else. Your assumption that someone owes you an explanation is arrogant and insupporable.

Coloma's avatar

Bottom line, we all have a right to live and do as we please.

While I may have my feelings about this topic I am also enlightened enough to know that what others do is none of my business and having feelings, opinions, about a certain issue does not give any of us the right to pound another into the ground if they choose differently than we.

We were asked our opinions, we all answered, and the rest is nothing but the dance of ego, doing what it does best, defending itself and it’s possistions.

Admittedly, while I may not agree with sport killing, if I was starving in the woods I would appricciate someone that had the skill to kill and build a fire and roast the wild turkey.

I doubt there is anyone among us that would stand aside under a circumstance such as this and refuse the drumstick. ;-)

mattbrowne's avatar

No. Some forms of hunting are needed to maintain the balance of our ecosystems. Human civilization has made a lot of predators disappear. Now, we must be the stand-in predators sometimes. But good rules and oversight is required.

crisw's avatar

@Trillian

“Oh, and your statement “There was also no doubt the same excitement when people killed people from other tribes as a rite of passage or as part of their culture.” is bullshit.”

First of all, even if tribes that killed each other as part of a cultural tradition didn’t exist, the point would stand. Such killings would not be justifiable simply because they were exciting and primal, or because they were traditional.

Secondly, groups that killed other people as part of their culture did exist-as examples, the members of the Leopard Society of Liberia dressed as leopards, killed people, and ate them. Boys were initiated into this society.

Among Pueblo Indians, “boys had to kill an enemy before induction into the warrior fellowship through a physical ordeal reminiscent of the Eastern Woodland huskinaw.,”

So there are a couple of examples.

“You assume the position of judge, as if you were appointed the keeper of someone else’s consciene. They owe you nothing, no explanations or anything else. ”

Again, you seem to be missing the point.

It isn’t about me. It’s about logic, coherency and consistency. Any ethical argument must be judged on its own, apart from the person who espouses it. I am not the judge; logic and reason are.

You would not be making the same points were I to be speaking out against rape or murder- no sane person would consider these simply a “personal preference” nor would someone complain that someone speaking out against rape or murder was imperious.

Instead, the disagreement here is over whether or not animals have some rights. You cannot simply declare by fiat that they do not. If your claim is that they do not, then you’d need to explain, in a logical, coherent, and consistent manner, why they do not.

If animals do have rights, then harming them for fun is a moral issue.

Winters's avatar

And morals are a matter of perspective.

crisw's avatar

@Winters

“Winters’s avatar

And morals are a matter of perspective.”

I don’t think so. If they were, then anything goes and we would have total anarchy.

Winters's avatar

Our perspective here is that hunting is morally fine, and your perspective is that it’s not so much. To different moral perspectives guided somewhat by social norms.

(Then again I’m nearing becoming 100% a moral nihilist so morals go out the window for me anyways)

Trillian's avatar

” then you’d need to explain, in a logical, coherent, and consistent manner, why they do not.” No, I don’t. I don’t answer to you. Nor do the people who hunt. As I already pointed out. Thank you for the links.

crisw's avatar

@Trillian

“No, I don’t. I don’t answer to you. Nor do the people who… ”

Would you say the same thing about murdering humans? If not, can you explain (in a non-tautological sense) why not?

if you believe that murder is unethical, and I believe the same thing, would you consider yourself “answering to me”? I doubt it. You’d recognize that we both share the same understanding of a fundamental moral concept.

Once again, it is not me that anyone must answer to. It’s moral consistency and coherency. I am simply the messenger; and you’re condoning shooting the messenger as well as the animals!

Response moderated (Personal Attack)
Trillian's avatar

@crisw You’re beginning to bore me. You are the one making fallacious arguments. You are entitled to your opinion. You are not entitled to be the consieince of anyone other than yourself. Learn to live with that. Or don’t. I don’t care.
Trillian over and out.

WestRiverrat's avatar

If I want to eat meat that is hormone free, drug free, steroid free, I pretty much have to hunt and kill wild game to find it. Even the ‘organic’ meat you can find in health food stores has to meet the USDA health and safety standards, which usually means some vaccinations of some kind.

It is also the only way to ensure that the meat I get is processed according to my standards of cleanliness and safety.

And in answer to the comment about most hunters not being good enough shots to cleanly kill the game they are hunting, you have never been around ethical hunters.

The ethical guides I know will not let anyone hunt if they cannot hit the kill zone sized target at the practice range before they go into the field.

Coloma's avatar

@crisw

You are clearly a smart woman, but, smart and wise are not necessarily the same thing.

Wisdom denotes acceptance and detatchment, not creating a right/wrong dichotomy and bulldozing those that do not share your exact opinions.

If you really want to be heard you will duly note the feedback you are receiving here.

Nobody appriciates being dominated by a know it all, mega argumentive personality.

I’m a pretty bright woman myself and I see the error in your ‘communication.’

Just sayin’....take a breath and let go of your egoic need to be right, it serves nothing and is certainly not conducive to setting up an audience of receptivity.

Sorry, but, I think your ‘investment’ in all this arguing goes deeper than the discussion at hand.

It’s okay, you won’t cease to exist if you tame your ego a bit.

tragiclikebowie's avatar

All @crisw is doing, is looking for a logical argument on the other side. The other side is only able to berate them and make it a personal matter. They are not being know it all or having a super ego – they are asking for logic and reason to disprove their question – which they have maintained since the beginning.

Coloma's avatar

@tragiclikebowie

I think ‘the other side’ HAS stated their opinions clearly.
So I respectfully diasagree, the original question has been answered and is no longer the question.

It HAS digressed into a circle jerk argument, of who holds the rightness of moral imperative.

I see no sadism in this discussion, just differing opinions, and all sorts of offshoot discussion that has digressed from the question at hand.

Put it this way, if someone is adamant about holding the moral truth of the universe in their hand and berating others for differing views, yet is unable or unwilling to look at their own hardcore rigidity when it comes to not accepting anothers answers as THEIR ‘truth’..well….the very definition of removing the log from ones own eye before plucking the splinter from anothers.

JilltheTooth's avatar

Oh, I thought the room would be empty by now. Never mind, I’ll drink my glass of wine in the lounge.

crisw's avatar

@tragiclikebowie

Exactly. Nice to see that someone understands.

crisw's avatar

@Coloma

Yes, you have stated your opinions clearly. All that I have asked is, rather than opinions, someone in this conversation give a logical, rational ethical defense of their position.

I have not “berated” anyone. I have not claimed to have the ultimate truth. I have called no names. I haven’t asked anyone for anything I am not willing to provide myself. I am far from rigid. If someone can actually present a logical, coherent, consistent argument for why killing animals for fun is ethical, I’ll listen. But no one has. No one has even really attempted.

Pointing out flaws in an argument, or pointing out the uses of logical fallacies, is hardly superiority or an example of berating people. It’s more proof to me that issues regarding animals are even more of a flash point to people than religion, abortion, or almost any other touchy subject. Cognitive dissonance is such a powerful force…

I can state, in detail, why I believe that animals have rights. I would welcome actual logical challenges to those arguments (rather than emotional responses, deflections, and logical fallacies) and I would answer them to the best of my ability. I find it disappointing that those who are truly the most strident in claiming to be right in this discussion- those who support hunting- are not willing to do the same.

MissAnthrope's avatar

Wow. This thread is overwhelming. I really wish I had taken notes as I read through because there are so many things I want to comment on.

Okay, first, my credentials. My field is wildlife biology, with a focus on the states of WV and PA. I even took a class on hunting (“The Tradition of Hunting”), which, despite the blatant propaganda and the fact that it ended up being a huge pro-hunting circle jerk, opened up my mind on the subject. Before the class, I was very much anti-hunting and I couldn’t even fathom why anyone would do it. My perspective has since shifted.

What I see as the crux of the argument here is something that cannot easily be resolved: differences in values regarding the natural world. The taxonomy of nature values include utilitarian value, naturalistic value, ecologist-scientific value, aesthetic value, symbolic value, humanistic value, moralistic value, dominionistic value, and negativistic value. Each of these values holds a different set of ethics and morals regarding human interaction with nature. There is no moral absolute here; much like religious debate, it brings up passionate feelings and I know some people feel they are in an unquestionably right moral position.

In addition to that, this issue of hunting is complex, in there are many factors to consider. Do you enjoy hiking? Bird watching? Going out and visiting state parks? You probably have no idea that much of the funding that goes to running these parks and keeping them free or low-cost to the public is paid by hunters through taxes on weapons and ammunition, hunting licenses, duck tags, etc. I am grateful to hunters for that.

Secondly, humans have eradicated most of the predators capable of taking down larger prey like deer and elk, most specifically, wolves. Humans have a very deep fear and suspicion of other predators, so we’ve driven them away from our settlements and in some places, extirpated them. Surely we can agree that it is more humane for a deer to be shot and killed quickly, than its suffering and starving to death slowly over a winter? Coyotes, by the way, have become a vermin species, but because they are extremely successful omnivore scavengers. In terms of handling overpopulation of deer, elk and larger species, coyotes are useless. They’ll happily go after your chickens, your cat, or your small dog, though.

No one can speak for every hunter, but I think that is an unfair and somewhat hypocritical statement/argument, considering how often we “speak for” (or don’t) whatever group we choose to represent, argue for, or defend here on Fluther. Another argument I find a bit preposterous is that people shouldn’t hunt, yet it’s okay to go to a grocery store and buy a packet of beef. Does that make the life of a cow worth less than that of a deer, and if so, is it because the deer is ‘prettier’ or more romantic than the cow?

Then we have the issue of ‘fair chase’, which, from what I understand, most hunters are aware of and they strive for. The practice of baiting is illegal in some places, if not most, because it gives an unfair advantage. The majority of hunters I have been exposed to, including quite a few speakers from hunting organizations through this class, agree that hunting just to kill things is unethical and wrong. Many agreed that hunting just to bag a trophy or a head for your wall is immoral, as well. So, you can’t lump all hunters together in a group.

In terms of ecology, hunters again are doing the rest of us a favor. The fact that people want to hunt and that they go out and do it saves YOU money. What hunters pay to do saves us money in terms of taxes, because the state would have to hire more DNR officers and biologists to handle overpopulation, nuisance animal complaints, property damage, etc. Again, I’m sure we can all agree that a quick death is preferable to starvation and disease, right? Not only that, but the population of deer in most places is FAR beyond the ideal. Hitting a deer is the #1 cause of auto accidents in PA. There are something like 60–80 deer per square mile, which is insane, y’all. That number should be 15–20.

Winters's avatar

As I wrote in a response somewhere way up there, I occasionally hunt, with my game mostly being wild boar. I stated that this has mostly been done in times that the boar population has reached a level where they pose a threat to the local environment and need to be trimmed down. However, I guess I may have implied to varying degrees that its more or less at the same time for sport, I utterly refuse to eat the boars I’ve shot. They’ll eat everything and a lot of that stuff I don’t want getting in me. I really just go after them because they’re probably the most thrilling game I’ve hunted so far, the chance that I’ll miss a vital spot and that the big old pig is going to turn and charge me – especially if its cornered – and potentially maim/kill me is, to say the least, exciting (yeah, I’ll get on the ground, not be up in some tree). And I’d probably rack at least some of their heads on the wall but paying for a taxidermy doesn’t really appeal to me (nor does doing it myself).

So I guess you can say I’m doing the environment a favor while getting my kicks as well.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Winters Some people say that Boar meat is delicious. I always figured it tasted like pork because that’s what it is. Wild pork. Why not donate the meat?

JilltheTooth's avatar

@MissAnthrope : I officially love you, now. Where were you yesterday? Sit down here with me and I’ll share my wine with you.

WestRiverrat's avatar

@MissAnthrope GA
@Winters – have you ever tried hunting hogs with a spear?

Winters's avatar

@Mikewlf337 Many times I’ve caught several of them eating stuff at small dumps throughout the woods (note to those who live in the country and you nature lovers who litter, stop throwing your shit in the woods, your little “contributions” do add up and are disgusting). Seeing what they ate, I refuse to take the chance of being responsible for possibly poisoning someone else, I’ve become convinced that they are land barracudas.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Winters LOL yeah they aren’t very finicky eaters. I hear they can be pretty vicious as well. If I kill one I will eat it because of my views on hunting, If I kill it I must grill it :D

MissAnthrope's avatar

@JilltheTooth – Awww, thanks! It usually takes me a little time to corral all my thoughts together to form a coherent point. I also will admit that I felt more than a bit intimidated by this thread and so, I wanted to make sure I got it right the first time. Now, did you say wine? :)

@WestRiverrat – Danke.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@MissAnthrope I think you gave a really good answer :)

JilltheTooth's avatar

@MissAnthrope : Red? White? Champagne? Whatever you want!

Winters's avatar

@Mikewlf337 believe me, they can be very vicious to the extent of seeming like they have a death wish, but that’s what makes it so fun.

Had a friend that I went hunting with barely miss a vital point on one hog and it turned and charged him, he dropped his gun and ran up a tree while the boar was ferociously attacking the tree with the apparent intention of bringing it down. It took about two minutes for me to chamber a round and and another minute for me to regain my composure so I could shoot the boar, I was laughing way too hard.

Coloma's avatar

@crisw

And there lies the point.

Nobody has claimed that killing animals for fun is ethical.

You are barking up the wrong tree.

People have ‘claimed’ that hunting is a right, that eating fresh meat is healthier than factory farmed products, that hunting, at times, can be beneficial to the overall big picture and thinning the herd, so to speak, but nobody has claimed joy at poking out an animals eyes with a stick as ‘fun.’

@Winters
Laughing at a terrified and wounded animal is not very laughable IMO.
This might qualify as sadistic.
There is no humor in watching something be terrorized. Period.

Winters's avatar

@Coloma what makes you think I was laughing at the animal, I was laughing at my friend the execution of his reaction was hilarious, I was surprised at the boar’s reaction as it was in no way cornered and impressed by it’s apparent determination of its death wish.

Yes, I am aware that I am more sadistic than the average joe, but I am also masochistic to the same extent as well, I laugh at everything and everyone including myself.

crisw's avatar

@MissAnthrope

Lots to respond to here.

“There is no moral absolute here; much like religious debate, it brings up passionate feelings and I know some people feel they are in an unquestionably right moral position.”

There is a huge chasm between passionate feelings (which people on both sides of this issue have) and impassionate ethical discussion. Yes, everyone may think that they are in the right. But, when it comes to actually attempting to determine what is right, emotion and passion have to be left aside in order to examine what is logical, consistent and coherent.

It seems that many on this thread have a very hard time distinguishing opinion- which is not necessarily logical- from taking an ethical stance- which must, by necessity, if ethics are to be of any use whatsoever- be logical.

Hunting is not just a matter of opinion. It causes harm to sentient beings. Such harm requires serious justification. In some cases- and I have mentioned a few in this thread, such as starvation and removal of non-native species that are damaging the environment- such harm may be justifiable. In many other cases, it isn’t.

And the justification for sport hunting has to stand up to scrutiny. So far, none of the arguments that have been offered do so.

“You probably have no idea that much of the funding that goes to running these parks and keeping them free or low-cost to the public is paid by hunters ”

Actually, I know this all too well. And it’s a travesty that leads to biased game management and virtual dismissal of the wishes of the vast majority of US and state citizens who do not hunt.

Because state game departments have their coffers filled by hunter and trapper dollars, they see hunters and trappers as their sole constituency. Those states, such as Idaho, that are funded solely by hunter dollars, are explicit about this. idaho, for example, wants to conduct a wolf pogrom because wolves eat elk- which Idaho feels are the property of hunters. idahos’ governor called elk “Idaho’s livestock.” When such attitudes prevail, the needs of nonage animals and nonhunting people are ignored.

The solution, of course, is to broaden the funding base. But- guess what- many hunters oppose this. In Idaho,for example, state wildlife commissioners and hunting groups opposed legislation that would have broadened the funding base- specifically because it would lessen the control that hunters have over wildlife management in the state.

“Secondly, humans have eradicated most of the predators capable of taking down larger prey like deer and elk, most specifically, wolves”

Again, as I have mentioned in this thread, the logical conclusion is that hunting of such predators for sport should be banned. But it isn’t. With the sole exception of mountain lions in California, non-endangered predators are hunted in every state in which they occur. And hunting groups shrilly oppose any protection of predators.

“Surely we can agree that it is more humane for a deer to be shot and killed quickly, than its suffering and starving to death slowly over a winter?”

Surely we can maintain that it’s better for this dilemma not to occur at all. Yet, again, hunters usually oppose measures that would prevent it, because it would mean less “sport” for them. It’s hunters who demand to hunt predators, who demand winter-feeding programs to maintain artificially high populations, who complain to state game departments if there isn’t a deer behind every bush and demand inflates game populations, etc. etc.

“Another argument I find a bit preposterous is that people shouldn’t hunt, yet it’s okay to go to a grocery store and buy a packet of beef.”

I agree 100% with you here.

crisw's avatar

@Coloma

“Nobody has claimed that killing animals for fun is ethical.”

People have stated over and over again in this thread that hunting is fun and that they enjoy it. In the end, many people hunt because they think it is enjoyable. And such hunts still require the death of an animal.

Winters's avatar

@crisw would it make you feel better if I used a tranquilizer instead?

WestRiverrat's avatar

@crisw Hunting is fun, but for most hunters the fun ends when the animal is killed. That is when the work begins. Field dressing and dragging an animal out of the woods is plain hard work. I don’t enjoy hauling 350+ pounds of meat and hide 5–15 miles back to camp over very rugged terrain. I do like eating the meat so I haul it out, in several trips if I have to.

In most states it is a felony to leave usable parts of an animal laying after killing it.

Coloma's avatar

@crisw

They have also said that it is about eating the animal not wanton massacre.

I don’t like the term ‘fun’ myself, but…I take that to mean all parts of the ritual, being outdoors, nature, ‘competition’, not just the killing.

Not my cup o’ tea but I don’t think it is fair or right to label all hunters as ‘sadists.’

I think it has far more to do with programming and un-examined beliefs than true sadism.

The ol’ ” my daddy was a hunter and his daddy was a hunter and I am a hunter, because it’s what REAL men do!”

crisw's avatar

@Coloma

I never said, nor do I believe, that hunters are sadists.

Coloma's avatar

@crisw

You have implied that very fact, equating ‘enjoyment’ of hunting with unethical, immoral behaviors.

crisw's avatar

@Coloma

No, not at all.

A sadist takes pleasure in inflicting pain. I don’t believe most hunters do that. I do believe most hunters strive for a clean kill.

However, this doesn’t remove the fact that they are taking a life. I can believe that that is immoral without believing that they are sadists for doing so.

Winters's avatar

For once I’m agreeing with crisw that sadism was never implied nor stated in any post of crisw.

WestRiverrat's avatar

===>First, there is nothing special about venison. You can’t buy rattlesnake meat in the grocery store either. It’s no big loss. Per raising the cow just for meat: what would you think of a person who worked at a slaughter house saying that the favorite part of his job is killing the cow and watching it die. Would you consider that sadistic?

I did work at a slaughter house once, and I preferred working the kill line. We got a substantial bonus for working the kill line.

The deer and elk I hunt, have a much better chance of survival than any of the cows that came through the doors of the slaughter house. I will only kill one, and all of them have the chance to fool me and get away.

Coloma's avatar

@crisw

Okay, my mis-interp. Mea Culpa.

But..just for the sake of argument, IF the hunting participants here did agree that taking the life of an animal was immoral where would you go from there?

crisw's avatar

@Coloma

“IF the hunting participants here did agree that taking the life of an animal was immoral where would you go from there?”

I am afraid that I don’t quite understand your question. If they agreed that it is immoral (as long as they were people who actually followed their own ethical rules) then they would not be doing it and we would probably not be having this discussion.

Coloma's avatar

@crisw

I mean to ask if you received an admission of immorality would that be the end of the discussion for you, would you then be satisfied that you attained solidarity of your beliefs via that admission?

I think the moral/immoral argument might be better served, as I originally mentioned, as enlightenment.
Honoring the inter-connectedness of everything which could also contain taking the life of an animal while honoring the act as sacred.

Immoral is subjective, and perception is reality.

Sometimes what might be considered an act of immorality may, infact, lend itself to the greater good in unforseen ways.

If one aspires to an open minded and/or ‘enlightened’ perspective, one must take into consideration that their views of morality may not be anothers.

Morality is subjective based on ones own programming, cultural influences, spiritual beliefs, etc.

There is no ‘one size fits all’ as much as one may wish there was.

And, ultimately, what could be more ‘immoral’ and disrespectful than one assuming a self imposed god of morality stance and condeming another to an immoral existance based on one particular behavior that doesn’t fit with ones own views?

This is the the ego of humanity, the stuff of wars.

Blacklisting others based on preferences, religious, sexual, by creed, color, nation, habit, on & on.

My point is, simply, that while I do not advocate sport killing I would not go so far as to claim that all hunters are practicing immoral behaviors.

To label the totality of another based on one behavior/action is immoral in itself.

To insist another hold ones same views is controlling and co-dependent.

crisw's avatar

@Coloma

Can you answer a direct question or two?

Are you a cultural relativist? That is, do you believe that any practice is ethical if a culture universally (or nearly) deems it to be ethical?

If you are not a strict cultural relativist, how, exactly, do you determine whether a practice condoned by a culture is ethical or not?

i have some other points that I’d like to address from your post, but I don’t want to go too far afield until I have the answers to those questions.

Coloma's avatar

@CrisW

None of the above.

I am simply playing devils advocate and saying that I am not ‘God’ and hold nobody, no group, no culture, to a particular mandate of moral absolutism as all situations need to be observed and determined on an individual basis.

I am advocating humility and the fact that labeling another based on one particular behavior is neither fair nor moral.

I may have no desire to eat cat soup in a rural province in China but I will not claim that eating cats is immoral simply because I prefer my cats to be companion animals.

I am asking YOU what it is you hope to gain, other than a sense of egoic rightousness in relation to your tenacious need to be agreed with?

You have segued a moral template into this discussion and it appears as if you will not rest until others concede.

I think I have articulated myself quite well, in stating that I do not believe in moral absolutes nor passing judgement on the totality of another based on personal preferences.

I may perceive you to be one who loves the ‘thrill’ of argument, is highly invested in being right, agreed with, relentless in your pursuit and tenacity of not accepting the answers given and quite adept at diverting the responses that don’t blend with your POV…BUT…it would be arrogant and inappropriate of me to paint the entirety of CrisW’s picture as some morally defective specimen of humanity.

Mikewlf337's avatar

lol cat soup

Coloma's avatar

@Mikewlf337

Cat soup is considered a winter health food in Guangdong province. ;-)

crisw's avatar

@Coloma

I must say, with all due respect, that you have done a very good job of inserting many disparaging remarks into your prose while claiming to be the reasonable person. If you read over what I have written, you’ll see I’ve been very careful so far not to point fingers. I cannot quite call what you are doing “humility.” Of course, in saying such, I am not saying anything about the arguments you have made. But I wish you’d lay off the personal intimations and actually address what I am asking.

You did not truly answer my question. It’s an important question, as it’s at the base of almost all moral disputes. I am going to try asking it a different way. I don’t find it useful to keep going in circles.

Getting back to the broken record here- either ethics are logical, consistent and coherent, or they are not. If they are not, then ethics are useless. If we accept that ethics do not have to be consistent or coherent, then there is absolutely no way to declare that any act is immoral. Murder, rape, child abuse, genocide, genital mutilation, subjugation of women- all could be condoned. This is the inevitable result of moral relativism.

If ethics must be logical, coherent, and consistent, then any given action must be judged against such standards. And, as a basis for any workable ethic at all, morally equivalent situations must be treated in the same manner. To do otherwise is prejudice, and prejudice is illogical. Thus, a true ethical system isn’t influenced by moral relativism. So, for example, subjugation of women is wrong because it treats morally equivalent people in a dissimilar fashion. So subjugation of women is wrong whether it happens in a developed country with high standards for women’s rights or in an Islamic country where the rights of women are traditionally given less weight.

So I only see two choices here. Moral relativism is OK- which means that we have no real foundation for any ethical system, as all ethics are then illogical, which means that we can never judge any act as right or wrong. Or else ethical systems must be logical, coherent and consistent.

Which is it? Or do you see another workable alternative?

You keep asking why I keep doggedly pursuing this. As others such as tragiclikebowie have pointed out, it’s because I have asked questions that no one has answered. Seeking answers is not a crime, nor, as I have said, is it an act of inherent superiority. I have no need to prove that I am right. I am, however, frustrated that so many questions go unanswered, or are met with logical fallacies or evasion.

By the way, you are accusing me of evasion. If there is any question you truly feel I have not attempted to answer, please inform me. I am not intentionally disregarding any questions.

Discussion is a two-way street, and you are choosing to participate in this as much as I am. Therefore, it seems unfair to criticize me for continuing the discussion.

One more thing.

You also are consistently and unfairly attributing thoughts and actions to me which I have not committed. Even Winters pointed out, for example, that when you stated I portrayed hunters as sadists, this was incorrect. You are continuing to do the same thing in your subsequent posts. I do not believe that I have ever “passed judgment on the totality of another.” I have addressed acts. I have not condemned people. If you are going to paint yourself as “enlightened” and “mature,” please do the same. Thank you.

Mat74UK's avatar

Two Rabbits tonight.

JilltheTooth's avatar

Really? Still?
@Mat74UK : Better make it three, I’m on my way over with the wine.

Winters's avatar

@JilltheTooth “It goes on and on and on and on…”

Mat74UK's avatar

@JilltheTooth – Make it a nice red!

JilltheTooth's avatar

@Winters : Bring some of that pig, we’ll get @Mat74UK to fire up the grill. I’ll bring red and white, and a nice choice of ale, as well.

Aethelwine's avatar

My husband just informed me that his boss was cleaning out her freezer and she gave him venison. Steaks and sausage! We have $15 left for our food budget this week, so this helps. :)

JilltheTooth's avatar

@jonsblond : Yummy! My BIL has the yummiest recipes for all things game. Many good meals, there!

WestRiverrat's avatar

@jonsblond Sounds like good eats.

@crisw Jews, Christians, Hindu, Wiccan and Muslims. Are you going to tell me that all members of any of those religions are unethical because they don’t all share the same set of ethics?

Winters's avatar

@JilltheTooth but but but I’m only 19! Don’t tease me with alcohol especially since my college will probably sic a breathalyzer on me, that’s just mean… But I’ll still bring the pig.

crisw's avatar

@WestRiverrat

“Jews, Christians, Hindu, Wiccan and Muslims. Are you going to tell me that all members of any of those religions are unethical because they don’t all share the same set of ethics?”

No. In fact, you’ll notice that the Golden Rule, or some form of it, is shared by all these religions- from the Biblical version to the Wiccan Rede- “An ye harm none, do as ye will” to the Hindu principle of ahimsa. It’s about as close as we get to a universal moral rule, and pretty similar to what I’ve been saying- don’t harm another unless it’s necessary to avert an equal or greater harm.

But notice that the precepts of all of these religions need to pass the tests of logicality as well. There are plenty of examples of religious dogma that most people reject because they are obviously illogical or inconsistent or incoherent. The good parts are good because they are logical, consistent and coherent.

JilltheTooth's avatar

OK, @Winters : Sparkling cider for you!

Dutchess_III's avatar

Cris said, “If someone can actually present a logical, coherent, consistent argument for why killing animals for fun is ethical, I’ll listen” (Emphasis mine.) That goes to the heart of my question. How could anyone consider it “fun”? My question stated it was for “sport.” We participate in sports because it’s fun. We enjoy it. So the question could be rephrased to, “What kind of person would consider killing an animal “fun”? What kind of person would enjoy seeing the life flow out of a living animal?”

I do not argue with population control measures. Someone asked if we’d prefer tranquilizers. If I had the option of choosing a tranquilizer over a gun that might or might not score a direct hit, or more especially a bow, which gives an even greater risk of suffering, then, yes. I wish we could use tranquilizers. But that wouldn’t be as much fun, would it. Although a tranquilizer would give a 100% kill rate (assuming you don’t miss altogether) it would be a peaceful death, and how boring is that.

Seaofclouds's avatar

@Dutchess_III The killing isn’t really what is fun about hunting. If you truly believe the only part of hunting people enjoy is the killing, then why would people continue to go out day after day without killing anything. Killing is a part of hunting, but it is not all there is to it and it is not the only part for people to enjoy.

With the way you word the question, it makes it seem like you really believe hunters are sadistic individuals and that isn’t the case for the hunters I know.

Humans are animals. Animals eat other animals. Yes, there are some people that won’t eat another animal, but even plants are living and we do damage to plants all the time. Are you going to call lumberjack sadistic because they enjoy cutting down trees? They are killing a living being afterall.

Dutchess_III's avatar

But @Seaofclouds…no other animal kills simply for “sport”! A well fed lion doesn’t say the pride, “Hey! There’s an Impala! Let’s kill it for fun, guys!” I have said, and I’ll continue to say, if I was living in the wilderness, I would hunt when I needed to. I don’t get the hunting for fun thing, and I don’t understand what is going through the minds of people who do.

Seaofclouds's avatar

@Dutchess_III Every hunter I know hunts for food. They eat the meat or give it to others to eat. It’s not just to collect a trophy. Do you see a difference between hunting for the food and hunting just to collect trophies? To me, it seems like you are saying all hunting is “just for sport” because we could go buy the meat at the store (which is more inhumane than hunting your own food). There is a difference between the two in my opinion. I’m curious if you see a difference between the two or if they are the same to you.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Dutchess_III Bows are efficient at killing quickly. They are not something that is weak. I know. I own one. The bow cable is very powerful. Alot of times an arrow or bolt will go right through an animal even if it strikes the shoulder blade.

WestRiverrat's avatar

@Dutchess_III you have never seen a hen house after a weasel has been into it have you. The weasel will kill every chicken in the hen house and not even eat half of one chicken. Or a pack of wolves in a flock of sheep.

Dutchess_III's avatar

One guy I know in particular does it for the trophy. That one goes to Alaska, cuts a small hole out of metal barrel with bear bait in it, then parks his fat, over-fed butt in a tree and waits for a bear to show up and get his head stuck in the barrel then shoots it till it’s dead. It’s socially acceptable, and I think it’s sick.

The rest of the people I know that hunt do it for the “trophy” of bragging about it, or giving away tons and tons of deer meat because they have too much and don’t want it. Like too many tomatoes during the summer. We wound up with a damn freezer full of meat ourselves last summer. We didn’t ask for it, we didn’t want it, but they foisted it upon us.

@Mikewlf337 I’m not saying the bow is weak. An arrow can go clean through an animal, or a man, and not kill it. Just like a gun, it can leave the animal in pain, but healthy enough to get far enough away and find some place to suffer while it slowly dies of infection. Or maybe recovers. You can fire a second or third shot from a rifle faster than you can fire a second or third shot from a bow, and that’s the difference. You get more chances of a kill with a gun.

@WestRiverrat So kill the damn weasel! I don’t have an issue with killing an animal for a good reason! But if you tell me that you just love watching it die, I have an issue with that.

WestRiverrat's avatar

@Dutchess_III you are missing the point of my post. You said animals don’t kill for pleasure, I just gave you two examples that refute your claim.

Seaofclouds's avatar

@Dutchess_III You didn’t answer my question about there being a difference between those that hunt for the food and those that do it just for the trophy. I get that you don’t agree with hunting just for the trophy, but do you consider those that hunt to provide meat for their family (without having to buy it at the grocery store) the same as those that hunt for trophies?

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Dutchess_III It is just as efficient. A gun is a projectile launched by gunpowder while an arrow or bolt is launced by a cable. Gun or bow if you shoot an animal in a non vital spot it will live long enough to get away only to die later. Hunters aim at the vital area where the organs are for a kill. Broadheads on an arrow or bolt is large, sharp and hard enought to be efficient. I know hunters who only use bows efficiently. Bows are just as deadly as guns. Not much difference between a shotgun slug and a broadhead.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Seaofclouds The basic reasoning for all human hunters is the same, whether it be for trophy or for meat. The “fun” is in the planning, the effort, the money spent and the climax is killing the animal. Whether it’s for trophy or for meat, I just don’t see the difference. It certainly makes no difference to the animal who died. It’s enjoying the kill, for whatever reason, that I do not understand. Why would anyone kill an animal if they didn’t have to?

@Mikewlf337 K. Both are equally efficient. Both can miss vital areas and leave an animal wounded and suffering. Like I said in my question, not every man is an Atticus Finch except in his own mind.

Seaofclouds's avatar

@Dutchess_III How do you know people enjoy the actual kill? Have you asked every hunter out there what the like and dislike about hunting? As far as why would they do it if they didn’t have to, how do you decide what they have and don’t have to do? Just because we can buy meat at a grocery store, that doesn’t mean people consider that a good alternative. Perhaps they feel they have to hunt to get fresh healthy meat for their family and to avoid supporting places that benefit from the inhumane treatment of animals. You and I will never agree on this since you lump all hunters into one category. There is more than one type of hunter, but since you don’t see it that way, there’s no reason to continue this conversation. We’ll just have to agree to disagree.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I live in Kansas @Seaofclouds. A lot of people around here hunt, and not one of them ever gets on the tailgate of their 4X4 and pontificates about the exemplary nutritional value of deer meat over domestic meat, or expound on how killing their own deer with their own hand is more virtuous than killing cows in a slaughter house. The hunters I know don’t think much beyond their next meal, next beer, and next deer hunt. They hunt because they enjoy it. And yes, those are the only experiences I’ve had with hunters. And I wish they’d stop trying to shove their excess deer meat on us.

Seaofclouds's avatar

@Dutchess_III So tell them no next time they offer it to you. It’s really not that hard. I’m sorry all of your experience with hunters has been like that, but I can assure you that the group you know does not accurately depict every other hunter out there.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Dutchess_III You seem to not understand the efficiency and eas of use of a bow or crossbow. Many hunters use them and prefer them over guns. They are efficient or nobody would use them. Why would a hunter want to lose his kill? They are just as efficient and most aim for the kill zone and nowhere else.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Seaofclouds If it was up to me I could do just that, and I have. But this last time my husband made a business trip without me that took him through his home town about 250 miles away. His brother gave him a Styrofoam cooler full of frozen deer meat. He brought it home. I almost literally couldn’t give it away. It took me six months to find a home for all of it.

@Mikewlf337 Of course everyone aims for the kill zone! But they don’t always hit it, and that’s my point.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Dutchess_III Well that will happen. The animal isn’t going to let you walk up to it and shoot it. Misses will happen here and there. Nothing in this world is 100% efficient. That doesn’t stop me from hunting. Most hunters hunt to for the meat. Yes they enjoy the hunting and yes they are exhilerated when the kill it. That is actually natural. I read something from a psychiatrist that said that the exhiliration from the hunt and the kill is just a natural reaction that goes back to the days when hunting was the only way of procuring meat. The key point I am trying to say is that they eat it and don’t just kill to kill. Most hunters hate people who kill just to kill and leave the animal to rot.

WestRiverrat's avatar

One kind of related question.

If most hunters were the immoral, sadistic killers that you try to portray them as, how come there are so few dead/injured antihunters?

I have run into several antihunters that were proud of the fact that they vandalized hunters vehicles and went through the woods banging on pots and pans to ruin the hunt. I live in a state where lethal force can be used to defend life or property. The hunter coming back from hunting to find his vehicle being set on fire would have been entirely within his rights to shoot the SOBs with the lighters. He called the game warden instead.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@WestRiverrat Very good point indeed. ALF and Peta are good examples of those types of people.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@WestRiverrat I’m not saying all hunters are “immoral and sadistic killers.” I’m saying that any person who can enjoy killing another living thing is a step down from what it’s supposed to mean to be human vs an “animal.” And the vandals you mention are of the same league as the anti-abortion guy who killed Tiller. They’re just hypocrites, just like the NAACP and other organizations are sometimes. There’s no arguing that point.
But, as an aside,....how do you kill someone with a lighter? Just curious!

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Dutchess_III He’s talking about vandilism

Dutchess_III's avatar

I understand what he’s talking about @Mikewlf337. But the people doing the “violent” vandalizing are protesting against the “violence” of killing helpless animals. They’re the kind of people who would set someone’s truck on fire in protest and only stop there because murder is illegal. Just like the hypocritical Tiller killer. People who get that illogically emotional like that would kill all hunters if they had their way. They’re hypocrites.

Seaofclouds's avatar

@Dutchess_III His point is that if hunters were just these immoral killers that enjoy killing things as you portray them, they would go after these antihunters because it is their legal right to protect their property by defending their property with lethal force against these antihunters that are destroying their property. Since they aren’t, it would seem that they aren’t as immoral as you seem to think they are.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Dutchess_III you asked how does someone kill with a lighter. Are you a vegetarian Dutchess? What is the difference between killing your own meat and buying meat killed from someone else?

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Mikewlf337… It was a joke. @Seaofclouds said, “The hunters….would have been entirely within his rights to shoot the SOBs with the lighters.” How can you shoot someone with a lighter? Nevermind!

@Seaofclouds Not so much immoral as low functioning. On a human scale, that is. About as low functioning as the violent protesting vandals you mentioned.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Dutchess_III I took it out of context. You don’t have to say nevermind. I sense anger. Why?
BTW you didn’t answer my question.

Seaofclouds's avatar

@Dutchess_III Wow, really. You think someone that has the knowledge and ability to track, hunt, and kill their prey as being low functioning. I’m not sure why you believe humans are suppose to be above killing their own food, but it doesn’t make the people that still do it any lower functioning than you. It just means they have a different preference than you. I get that you’ve only had experience with the crappy hunters, but as I said before, they don’t represent all other hunters. You are judging a large group of people off of the small group you’ve seen and it’s really not accurate.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Mikewlf337 OK. I’ve answered that question several times. I’m an omnivore. I eat meat. If I lived isolated in the wilderness I would hunt. But I wouldn’t hunt just for the “fun” of it. I’d hunt because I had to. I wouldn’t enjoy the killing at all. Yes, you can call ME a hypocrite because I eat meat without having to participate in the killing. A hunter, on the other hand, hunts and kills because he wants to, not because he has to. I think there is a difference in the mind set.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Seaofclouds I can agree that I’ve only had experience with a small group of people, and it’s true that none of that small group think philosophically, ever. They don’t put a moral justification on why they do the things that they do. They just go kill things. They just go and do what they do because they do it.

Seaofclouds's avatar

@Dutchess_III So why make such broad statements about all hunters when you admit you only have experience with a small group? Why can’t you acknowledge that not all hunters are like that and that they are no lower functioning than you, they just prefer to get their meat from a different source than you do? I ask this because above you said their is no difference to you in hunters that want to do it to get meat for their families and hunters that are only interested in getting trophies.

Dutchess_III's avatar

OK. We can do a web fight here ‘cause I don’t know how else we can do it. Show me some sites that depict thoughtful, intelligent, philosophical hunters, and I’ll see what I can come up with in counterpoint.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Alarm goes off at 5:30. Gotta go to bed now….don’t know when I can make it back but I’m not bailing!

WestRiverrat's avatar

@Dutchess_III I can’t show you any web sights, I can share some of my experiences. Taking a gun or bow into the woods does not guarantee you will come out with meat.

I have not harvested a deer for 3 years now. By choice, I had several opportunities to take deer, but they were not the one I was hunting. I could have shot at the deer I am hunting last year, I was even teased for not taking the shot. But it was a shot I thought I could make, not the shot I knew I couldn’t miss.

If I get him this year, I will hang him on the wall. When I look at him I will remember the times I thought I had him and he slipped away from me. I will remember what he taught me over the years of hunting him. I will also remember how he fed me when I was hungry.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Dutchess_III I don’t care if you think most of us are unintelligent. Scour the internet for all the research you want. There is research that supports every point of view on this planet on the internet. I think you generalize us to much. It is easy to generalize someone or something you don’t know much about. You may not want to see our point of view but I can’t help that. I feel I gave you a good explanation on why I do what I do. I really shouldn’t have to answer to you or anyone else but I did anyways. Getting angry because we dont see eye to eye is just childish.

Seaofclouds's avatar

I don’t know of any websites of the top of my head because all my experience with hunting is personal from family and friends. I have no desire to get in a web fight, or any other kind of fight. I’ve already told you that from my experience, the hunters I know aren’t anything like the hunters you know. I really doubt finding a website about a group of hunters is going to change anything.

Aethelwine's avatar

@Dutchess_III Show me some sites that depict thoughtful, intelligent, philosophical hunters

You want thoughtful and philosophical? Read chapters two and three.

Coloma's avatar

@crisw

I do not place hunters on the same ethical/moral continuum as rapists, genital mutilators and oppressors of women.

I choose to not identify with any particular terminolgy as every ‘ethical’ judgement is subjective based on the individual and intent.

Intent is everything.

This is why we have varying degrees of murder and other crimes, from ‘petty’ to ‘grand’. Accidental/negligent/involuntary to premeditated.

The oppressor that oppresses out of sheer conditioning is not the same as the oppressor that oppresses out of malice or mental illness.

A rapist or child molester is a mentally ill individual and therefore is unconsciously driven.

Sooo, if one truly wishes to employ ‘ethics.’ again, the ‘one size fits all’ is a fallacy.

To use the ‘one size fits all’ mantra one must exclude a myriad of reasons, intentions, conscious vs, unconscious action, conditioning/programming, mental illness, emotional illness and the list goes on.

It is impossible for a sane and healthy individual to take pleasure in the suffering of another, be it human or animal. Which only leaves gross mental illness or severe unconscious behavior/conditioning at the heart of all ‘immoral’ action.

Damn, would someone just shoot me already? lol

Winters's avatar

@Dutchess_III what about say Ernest Hemingway?

MissAnthrope's avatar

Forgive me for not jumping back into this fully just yet, but it’s my birthday and I can do what I want I just don’t have the brainpower at the moment. :)

I do want to quickly respond to the request for links. My hope is that you can be open enough, @Dutchess_III, to see that the hunters you know don’t represent all hunters. Sadists find their niches in all walks of life. As an example, some of them find their way into the military. It’s silly to call military participation sadistic when the majority of people are participating for entirely different reasons, right? Why is hunting any different? Who says that all hunters get off on killing the animal? Who says they don’t respect the animal? Most of the hunters I have known have a love and admiration of the animals they hunt, which is why so many conservation organizations have been founded by hunters (see links below).

Humans have a long relationship with hunting, so much so that it has been argued that we have a hunting drive. In modern times, this ends up manifesting in ways such as people being passionate about collecting, where they’re on the “hunt” for the next great find. If it weren’t for our ancestors beginning to eat meat, we never would have become who we are now. Brain tissue is expensive and takes 3–5x the energy to run and maintain as our other tissues. So, the brain enlarging and developing as it has would not have been possible without meat becoming a staple in our diets. The change to an agrarian lifestyle and the possibility of having a consistent source for growable proteins wouldn’t even have been possible without the change in our brains first.

I have no desire whatsoever to kill animals, but I completely understand the enjoyment and satisfaction gained from everything up until that point. There is something primal and ancient about being in nature, in tune to all the sounds, sights, and smells, in search of food. It’s a natural ritual, one practiced by species all over the world. When done right and ethically, which is to say with respect for the animal and its habitat, and practicing fair chase, hunting is no more sadistic than wolves taking down a deer. It is simply part of the circle of life.

Ducks Unlimited
Quail Unlimited
Pheasants Forever
Trout Unlimited

^^ These are just a sampling. I think these are perfect examples of intelligent, thoughtful hunters.

FutureMemory's avatar

@jonsblond Is that you and Jon on the cover?

JilltheTooth's avatar

Happy Birthday @MissAnthrope ! BTW, I love you even more now!

Aethelwine's avatar

@FutureMemory lmao…. I’ve only killed fish, but I do hope to bow hunt with my husband some day.

crisw's avatar

@MissAnthrope

In this long conversation, I’m wondering if you saw my post in response to you. I’d appreciate your input.

Please note that I oppose hunting but I do not think hunters are sadistic.

crisw's avatar

@Coloma

“I do not place hunters on the same ethical/moral continuum as rapists, genital mutilators and oppressors of women.”

I did not ask you to, and you are shifting the question. You will notice that the particular post that you are referring to does not even mention hunting (nor will this one, other than this sentence!). The point had nothing to do with hunting in particular, but with ethics in general.

Th point was whether ethics must be logical, consistent and coherent or not. You still haven’t really answered that very simple question. The point was also that, if they do not have to be so, then anything goes, morally, thus ethics are worthless..

“Intent is everything.
This is why we have varying degrees of murder and other crimes, from ‘petty’ to ‘grand’. Accidental/negligent/involuntary to premeditated.”

While intent may factor in, it isn’t “everything.” Negligent homicide is still homicide, even if I had no intent whatsoever to kill the victim. Genital mutilation is still mutilation even if the intent is a cultural ritual. Subjugation of women is still subjugation even if I see it as a holy duty. The dead person is just as dead, the mutilated person just as mutilated, and the oppressed woman just as oppressed, no matter the intentions of those who committed the acts against them. Rights accrue to the individual, and in all of these cases individuals are harmed.

I think this deals as well with your examples of mentally ill individuals doing harm. I don’t think that anyone would disagree that the consequences for such individuals, versus those that harm with malice aforethought, should be different. However, and this is the vital point, the individual who was harmed was still harmed, and that harm was still something that should be prevented. No sane person would claim that, because there are mentally ill individuals in the world, they should be allowed to murder people just because they are mentally ill.

“It is impossible for a sane and healthy individual to take pleasure in the suffering of another, be it human or animal.Which only leaves gross mental illness or severe unconscious behavior/conditioning at the heart of all ‘immoral’ action.”

As I mentioned above, that is simply incorrect. The motives of the actor do not mitigate the harm done to the individual. They may determine the punishment, but that is a legal matter. Ethics are different.

There are many ways in which a person can be harmed- often grievously so- with no harmful intent whatsoever on the part of the one doing harm. I mentioned several above. Another example- one that shows up constantly in the news-

A very religious family believes deeply in the power of prayer. They have a sick child with a very painful illness. They lovingly pray for their child to be better, believing with all their hearts that they are doing the right thing, The child suffers and dies.

Was that child harmed? Obviously the answer is yes. Note that this has nothing to do with whether or how the parents should be punished. The point is that the child was harmed, and it did not require any malicious intent.

Coloma's avatar

@crisw

I did answer the question.

I said I believe in a case by case basis and nobody, regardless of any ethical mandate, can judge for certain the intent of another.

So, I am not incorrect, excluding the punishment meted out by the powers that be according to that particular socities moral code.

I am not saying there are not, nor should there not be consequences for certain harmful behaviors, conscious or unconscious.

I am saying that an unconscious person is not truly responsible for their actions, how could they be?

Therefore it is impossible to truly label anyone as unethical or immoral dependant on these factors.

What I will not do is put the totality of my individual complexities into a narrow box labeled ‘moral relativism’ or any other of a thousand boxes that cannot possibly encompass the infinity and complexity of the individual.

I am liberally liberal AND conservatively conservative based on a case by case system.

I know not what is best for another, what personal and spiritual lessons they need, how the totality may converge to allow something unforseen to arise from what, on the surface, may appear to be immoral or unethical.

The example of the ill child being treated through prayer instead of medical intervention is the RIGHT of the parents, and while I may not agree, if that is their reality, yes, there will be consequences, but with mitigating circumstance based on their religious freedom to worship and live as they see fit.

If I was part of a jury in that situation I would vote for involuntary manslaughter.

I cannot hold another morally responsible for a belief system they completely buy into.

That’s the best and most honest answer I am capable of.

Accept it or reject it.

crisw's avatar

@Coloma

OK, I think I am seeing a little more clearly now one of the issues here.

You are focusing on the actors, and the consequences, especially legal ones, to them rather than the victims. I am focusing more on the victims.

It seems that, for example, you do not believe that any wrong was committed to the child who suffers and dies because her parents treated her with prayer instead of medicine. You actually call it the right of the parents to do so.

I strenuously disagree, and please see this as a general case as well as a specific one. That child was an individual who wanted to go on living, She was harmed. She suffered and died and that suffering and death was not to prevent an equal or greater harm. She was given no choice in the matter. And I believe that that is something that should not happen in an ethically sane world.

What punishment, if any, is meted out to the parents after the act is inconsequential. The question is rather the child was wronged in the first place.

Please understand that this situation is hypothetical in the sense that I am using it here as a thought experiment (even though such cases are all too real.) We could substitute any number of equivalent situations.

The ultimate point, once again- and I bolded it so many times above! Rights accrue to the individual. The motives of the actor do not, in any way, mitigate such harm. The consequences to the actor do not, in any way, mitigate such harm. If the harm is unjust, then it’s unjust. I have the right not to be murdered in my sleep, whether the murderer hates me for speaking out too brashly on Internet discussion boards or believes he is doing me a great blessing by offering my soul to the great god Zax. What motivated the murderer, and what consequences there are for the murderer, are irrelevant to answering the question of whether my rights were violated.

Coloma's avatar

@crisw

I too strenuously disagree with allowing a child to suffer, but..what I am saying is that others beliefs ARE THEIR REALITY!

It is what it is.

I am not saying others are not accountable for inflicting harm, I AM saying that since perception IS reality, we cannot argue with anothers reality and expect the ‘one size fits all’ to apply.

I can sentence one for a harmful crime but I cannot judge them on a level of morality nor ‘spiritual’ consequence.

If we rise above the laws and opinions of man we enter into unknown territory.

On the surface the child that died from what one might deem ‘negligence’ may, infact, act as a catalyst for change, therefore the life was not taken in ‘vain.’

While I aspire to the ’ do no harm’ philosophies I also take into account that there are times when what appears ‘harmful’ may, infact be part of a bigger and broader spectrum of ethics beyond our comprehension.

I always attempt to look deeper than the surface level of ego and programming.

To have ones rights violated one must be alive.
If you were to be murdered your rights evaporate along with your body. lol

So the best you could hope for would be that your seemingly ‘untimely’ death might initiate some practical change.

Perhaps an increase in awareness that one should temper their passions in an online community understanding that there might, infact, be a lunatic that would gladly press a pillow over CrisW’s face in her sleep for lack of better coping skills. lol

‘Megans law’ is a prime example, while sad that the child was murdered, the outcome has served the greater good.

crisw's avatar

@Coloma

So, would CPS be wrong for removing the dying child from her home?

Would someone have been wrong for stopping Megan’s murder?

I am not a utilitarian, because of the rights abuses that occur with utilitarianism.

Coloma's avatar

@crisw

I am not disputing taking action when applicable. I am simply stating that sometimes what appears to an unethical or immoral act can, ultimately, serve the greater good.

Most would say that infidelity in a committed relationship is an immoral and unethical act.

Infidelity in my marriage was one reason I chose to divorce my ex and I have never been happier!

Sooo, I’d say his ‘immoral’ act has served me and the greater good in a myriad of positive ways, therefore I consider it to be one of my greatest blessings! lol

That is all I have been attempting to express, that often what appears to be cause for suffering ultimately serves the greater good.

This has been an interesting discussion but I think it’s run it’s course.

I have enjoyed all the responses…Tally Ho! ;-)

crisw's avatar

@Coloma

Happy to end the discussion as well, but one last point- I started to write about it above, then decided to leave it short.

“I am simply stating that sometimes what appears to an unethical or immoral act can, ultimately, serve the greater good.”

I mentioned above that I am not a utilitarian, and this is why. If we reduce individuals down to their worth to others, than horrific abuses to individuals can be deemed excusable.

This is a thought experiment that I did not originate- I first read about it from Tom Regan- but it’s apt.

Let’s suppose you have a spinster Aunt Bea. She inherited a fortune from her husband. They had no children; you are her only relative. She is kind of a recluse; she has no close friends. However, she is healthy and happy and enjoys her life. She has left all her money to you in a will.

You have a way to kill Aunt Bea that will never be detected. No one will miss her. You know of a charity for starving children that can save many lives with Aunt Bea’s money.

Is it moral to kill Aunt Bea and donate all the money to your charity?

Mikewlf337's avatar

The never ending thread

JilltheTooth's avatar

@Mikewlf337 : Any bets on who gets the last word? We should start a pool. hee hee “pool”...get ti? Jellies in a pool…oh, never mind ;-)

Coloma's avatar

@crisw

Hahaha..well….just so happens I have a potential ethics situation unfolding right now.

The local F.D. is on their way to rescue my cat from 40 feet up a huge Oak tree.

What if in rescuing my cat they neglect someone burning to death?

Seriously Cris, you are clever in your ability to create imaginative scenarios, but really. lol

Murdering Aunt Bea and giving her fortune to charity is quite a stretch.

Obviously that would be a punishable offense, but, dead is dead, as you mention, sooo, at that point might as spread the cash around in a helpful fashion.

Gotta go, the firemen are here! ;-)

Winters's avatar

“I know the thread that everybody knows, everybody knows. I know the thread that everybody knows, and this is how it goes. I know the thread…”

JilltheTooth's avatar

So far, Last Word goes to… @Winters ! Woo Hoo! oops, I guess it actually goes to me at the moment… <thumps brow>
Or Not…

crisw's avatar

@Coloma

I specified that it was a thought experiment. I also specified that I did not create it. And, again, you address the punishment rather than the act itself.

Was it right to kill Aunt Bea? Yes or no?

Mikewlf337's avatar

@crisw What are you talking about and what does Aunt Bea have to do with the question?

Winters's avatar

We’re beating a dead horse here, we’re never going to see things from the same pov so can we just let the dead horse drop alone already?

And I think that the whole Aunt Bea is on a completely different plane.

JilltheTooth's avatar

@Winters : But…Who killed the horse…and how? Maybe Aunt Bea? When she wasn’t keeping house for Sheriff Andy and Opie..

Winters's avatar

@JilltheTooth We all killed the horse, including Aunt Bea.

crisw's avatar

@Mikewlf337

If you read the post to Coloma a few posts above this one, you will see. I am not sure that theoretical philosophical discussion is exactly your cup of tea, but it’s an example of the consequences of utilitarianism, where the results of an action and whether it increases aggregate happiness in the world are what matters in deciding whether a given action is ethical.

Coloma seems to be a utilitarian, as she seems to feel that the positive consequences of a horrible act such as a child murder or the death of a child through medical neglect can outweigh the wrong done to the harmed individual. I am not a utilitaran for the reasons given in the Aunt Bea case. Yes, it is a thought experiment- but it’s one that illustrates the base flaw in utilitarian thinking.

Another way of looking at it- and one that was discussed on Fluther not long ago- is Ursula K. LeGuin’s beautiful short story The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas., in which the lifelong torture of a child enables a society to survive. Again, this is a thought experiment. However, much as controlled scientific experiments explore the boundaries and consequences of a scientific theory, controlled philosophical experiments explore the boundaries and consequences of a philosophical theory. A theory that fails in such a controlled environment is even more fallible in the real world.

Coloma's avatar

@CrisW

What part of ..SOMETIMES, the outcome of a PERCEIVED NEGATIVE contains the seeds of a POSITIVE….is so hard to grasp?

No…I do not condone murder and a Robin Hood ethic, BUT..once the deed is done, it is about what POSITIVES may arise out of a perceived negative.

Better to murder Aunt Bea and donate her fortune to orphans than to purchase a heroin cartel.

For the LAST time….all I am promoting is that there is often an unforseen silver lining, if you will, that rises above the mundane surface levels.

I am promoting expanding ones narrow vision beyond the level of surface.

crisw's avatar

@Coloma

Once again, we seem to be talking at cross-purposes.

As I have tried to make abundantly clear, I am focusing on whether an act should be committed in the first place, not in what consequences it has afterward. We all agree that someone, somewhere will find something positive in the aftermath of even the most horrific and despicable act. That does not tell us whether or not the act should have been committed in the first place. As an extreme example, I don’t think that anyone would condone the Holocaust because it provides a good teaching tool today about the horrors of genocide. Saying that it had some positive consequences today doesn’t make killing six million people right.

You talk about “once the deed is done.” I am talking about whether it should be committed in the first place.

And that has been the case all along.

Coloma's avatar

@crisw

Shoulda, woulda, coulda, moot.

It is ALWAYS what comes after the fact, because what is, is. It cannot be any other way.

Once something has transpired there is nowhere to go but forward.

There is no such thing as ‘should’.....there is only what is.

Don’t should on yourself. lol

If you understand, it is what is, if you don’t understand, it is what it is.

I am more concerned with the Phoenix rising than I am the pile of ashes.

It was unfortunate that 6 million jews had to lose their lives to an unconscious dictator yes.

BUT…had that event not occured perhaps it would be 12 million.

Again, there is no such thing as ‘should,’ only what is.

One can talk about what ‘should’ or should not happen, but it’s spinning wheels and burning fuel that could be better utilized in seeking solutions in the aftermath of whatever situation presents.

That might be looking at prevenatives, education, expansion, but whats done is done, whether or not it ‘should’ have happened is irrevelant to the NOW of what is.

“Ooh..I ‘shouldn’t have eaten that Snickers bar”...but I did, the fat is already on it’s way to my ass…sooo, perhaps I choose the carrot stick next time.

No use crying over spilt milk, mop it up and invent a better cup.

crisw's avatar

@Coloma

Well, I think this is where we leave it, then, and it’s a very good example of why we seem to be talking past each other.

Speculating on whether an act had positive consequences after the act isn’t ethics. Ethics is about what we should do, not what has already been done. Such speculation doesn’t inform us on how we should choose to act today, and, when taken to an extreme, allows any act.

“One can talk about what ‘should’ or should not happen, but it’s spinning wheels and burning fuel that could be better utilized in seeking solutions in the aftermath of whatever situation presents.”

That does seem to sum up your position, and it’s why I must reject it. I am faced with a multitude of choices every day, and I do my best to make the choices that will cause the least harm to others. I don’t do whatever I please and try to look for some good in the outcome later.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@crisw I think you can’t help but get the last word in. That you think that you will win this argument if do get the last word in. You haven’t won anything. You haven’t changed one mind in this thread. You must have arrogance oozing out of your ears if you think that you have. This thread has gotten rediculous. I really don’t care what you think of me. I don’t care if you cry yourself to sleep everynight because I and others hunt and eat meat. That will be your fault not ours. I have met others like you. Having a bleeding heart is not a good thing.

rangerr's avatar

@crisw I’d just like to thank you for being logical and for trying to have a meaningful conversation. Never leave Fluther. Thanks.

Coloma's avatar

@crisw

First..disclaimer: This is not about getting in the last word for me, it is about clarity.

If you go waaay back to some of my first comments I think it is easy to see that I am simply advocating the unknown positives that are generated by what appears to be negatives.

I too practice making conscious choices with the tools and facts presented to hopefully create the best and least harmful outcomes. I chose to spend $150 last night to have an emergency tree service person come out and scale 40 feet up an Oak tree to bring my kitten down who had been stuck for the past 30+ hours before a rain and snow storm hits my zone.

A choice to avoid any further harm to my cat, emotionally and physically.

My easily understood comments have been grossly manipulated and convoluted into a mere shadow of their original meaning and intent.

Did I not state very clearly that I do not support a ‘Robin Hood’ ethic?

Weaving epic fiction out of simple, easy to understand and thoughtful comments seems to be your specialty.

Talk about making a mountain out of a molehill….lol

JilltheTooth's avatar

and the beat goes on…and on…and on…and on…

Mikewlf337's avatar

@JilltheTooth Like I said the never ending thread lol. I heard there is boar in parts of ohio. I’m going to look into hunting them. Bring home some bacon!

tragiclikebowie's avatar

I second what @rangerr said.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@jonsblond I saw the chapters. I hardly think they were actually written BY Ted Nugent!

Mikewlf337 I’m not in the least bit angry. If I feel any emotion it’s sadness. I just do not understand how anyone could bear to watch an animal die, to see the life fade from their eyes, and call it fun.

@westriverrat regarding the buck you’ve been hunting for years. I appreciate what you’re saying, but why can’t you get the same satisfaction by doing the same thing with a camera instead of a gun?

Word!

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Dutchess_III The hunting is fun but you want to know what I feel watching an animal die? I don’t feel anything when seeing the animal die. I turn it off. The hunt is over after the animal dies and I then field dress the animal and take it home to disassemble it and put it into my freezer so I can eat it. To me hunting is part of nature. Part of the food chain. It’s not like a hunter stars into the animals eyes when it dies. Were hunters not sadist.

Aethelwine's avatar

@Dutchess_III You can’t eat a photograph. just sayin’ You also asked for an example of a thoughtful hunter, and I gave it to you. It doesn’t matter if Mr. Nugent wrote it or not, the example given in the book is one of a thoughtful, intelligent hunter.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@jonsblond Any decent writer can make anything sound noble.

@Mikewlf337 OK, if you didn’t “turn it off” how would you feel?

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Dutchess_III Nothing, Knowing myself I would feel nothing. I just accept it as part of the food chain

FutureMemory's avatar

@Mikewlf337 I have met others like you. You are a frightening individual.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@FutureMemory I don’t care what you think of me. If you think Im frightening because I am able to hunt for food then that’s your problem not mine.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Mikewlf337 There is a need for hunters, especially deer hunters when the deer populations get too big and they become a threat to humans. But you can stop acting like you hunt just for food (food that you do NOT need to survive) instead of simply for the joy of killing something. If I had to hunt to live I would. But I certainly wouldn’t feel “nothing” when I took the animal’s life. That’s @FutureMemory‘s point..how can you not feel anything?

Aethelwine's avatar

@Dutchess_III Why can’t you understand that the meat from hunting wild animals is much better for you than the meat you buy at the grocery store. Just like growing your own vegetables. There is satisfaction knowing that you worked for the food you are about to put on your table, whether it be meat, fruit or vegetables.

FutureMemory's avatar

@Mikewlf337 Heh, I actually requested my post be removed (although it just occurred to me that it would have been smarter to actually flag myself rather than send a PM to a sleeping mod) because I felt it was beneath (what I consider) my personal standards If I take a shot at someone I should at least give specifics. I ain’t no punk passive aggressive jellie that talks shit without backing it up so I apologize for that.

BUT-

I find it really interesting that you repeat a slight variation of “I don’t care what you think of me, if you have an issue with me that’s your problem not mine” in so many of your posts. I don’t mean this thread or just this subject, I mean across the board.

Do you have issues with people in real life wanting you to be accountable for things you say or do, that that has sort of become your mantra? The frequency with which you repeat it gives the impression you’re not interested whatsoever in other people’s opinions about anything you say or do. If that’s the case, what are you doing getting involved in debates?

Dutchess_III's avatar

@jonsblond I can understand that. Are you telling me that the only meat you eat is from animals you’ve killed yourself? Do you raise your own cattle and hogs? Are you going to have turkey next Thursday? Do you never eat steak or pork ribs or a burger from Micky D’s? I feel if you’re going to stand on that principal you need to do it 100%. Otherwise, it’s just a cover up for the fact that you like killing things.

Aethelwine's avatar

@Dutchess_III My husband works on a ranch. Each year we get a full cow that is taken to the butcher. My husband has personally fed these cows. No, he did not kill the cow himself, but the difference and quality of the meat is amazing. It tastes so much better than factory farmed meat. Have you had the opportunity to try it? You should.

I don’t see why it has to be all or nothing? We are having both deer and turkey for Thanksgiving. What difference does it make if we eat both? We eat wild meat when we get the chance, and I don’t see what is wrong with that. In fact, I find it more commendable than supporting factory farmed meat 100% (all the time) like you do.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@jonsblond I respect what you’re saying, and in fact, have considered having a corn-fed cow butchered. We have farms around here that do that. But I haven’t done it, mainly because it’s a lot of money up front. As to the other, if you believe that “factory” meat is THAT unhealthy then you should never eat it. You should not buy a turkey from the store at Thanksgiving.
And your husband works on a ranch….what do the people who own the ranch do? Do they raise cows for slaughter?
Gotta go to work now guys!

Aethelwine's avatar

I’d like to add to my previous post, since you think it’s all about taking pleasure in killing the animal. Working at the ranch, my husband often has to put a bullet to the head of a sick or injured cow. He hates this! He also has to cut the head off with a saw and dispose of the body. This is not an enjoyable activity for him.

If he enjoys killing animals so much (according to you), wouldn’t he enjoy this activity?

if you believe that “factory” meat is THAT unhealthy then you should never eat it.

We enjoy eating meat, and do our best at getting fresh meat whenever we can. It’s just not possible to do every day of the year. At least we try. Why is that so terrible?

Dutchess_III's avatar

@jonsblond Why doesn’t he enjoy it? How can you enjoy one thing, and yet be distressed at the exact same thing only in a different context? Killing is killing. Dead is dead.

Also, does the ranch he work at raise cows for whole sale butchering?

Mikewlf337's avatar

@FutureMemory I do respect others opinions without labeling them unethical or immoral. I would expect the same. Why should I be held accountable like I did something wrong? I don’t like being put on a guilt trip because someone disapproves of something I do. I think the ones against hunting on this thread is making a huge thing out of nothing. You have a beef with the food chain? Take it out on nature.

Aethelwine's avatar

@Dutchess_III That’s what you are not getting here. It’s not the killing that is enjoyable! You are lumping all hunters as sadistic killers. They are not. They are not looking the animal in the eye thinking “die bitch”. When my husband hunts he is providing for his family, when he has to kill an injured/sick animal he is not providing for his family. You keep using the example of photography. A photographer will take pleasure in seeking out that prize photo, they don’t want it handed to them. They want to earn it on their own. It’s the same for hunting.

Also, does the ranch he work at raise cows for whole sale butchering?

My husband’s boss was injured in a work related accident many years ago and was awarded many millions of dollars. He had always wanted to own a ranch. They have horses, 200 head of black angus, 150 calves, 80 longhorn, ponies, llamas, peacocks, donkeys, and probably several other animals I can’t think of at the moment. They sell their cattle that are raised on the pasture. They also let the boy scouts use their land.

I’ve answered your questions, and honestly, this is getting very tiring. I agree with @Mikewlf337, I respect your opinion, you don’t want to hurt an animal, you’ll just let someone else do it for you, fine. Some of us prefer to get our own meat when we get the chance. There is pleasure knowing where your meat came from, and that you caught it yourself.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@jonsblond re your first statement: I agree that a photographer would want to work for what he gets. I have no issue with the work and the adventure involved. I have a problem with the end result when it comes to hunting. What is the point of killing the animal when you don’t really need the food! Look..I don’t believe your husband is a sadist. I don’t believe most hunters are actual sadists in the strictest definition of the word. I just don’t see how anyone could derive pleasure from the death of another animal for no reason. If it’s truly just for the special meat, I’m sure he could find deer meat for sale if he really wanted it, and he could satisfy his adventure desire in another way. And I guess we just agree to not understand the other. Peace.

Ok..so what does the rancher do with the 200 head of black Angus? Are they strictly range fed?

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Dutchess_III Not everybody is as soft as you. Some people are capable of hunting their own meat. Like @jonsblond said. There is a certain kind of satisfaction in growing your own vegetables and hunting your own meat.

WestRiverrat's avatar

@Dutchess_III Since angus are primarily raised for beef, I imagine they are sent to a slaughterhouse for killing, butchering and packaging.

rangerr's avatar

@Dutchess_III I’m sure he could find deer meat for sale if he really wanted it

Okay.. so it’s cool for other people to hunt and make a profit from it. But it’s terrible and sadistic if a person wants to hunt for themselves and their family? Man, I love these new rules.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@rangerr yes some stores do sell venison. Unfortunately where I live it’s only sold in a store called “Jungle Jims” lol love that store despite the goofy name.

Dutchess_III's avatar

My husband came from a hunting family. When he was a kid they’d hunt squirrels and stuff and his mom would cook them. They didn’t HAVE to, because they had plenty of meat in the freezer, but they just wanted to. He loved animals, though,and always felt a twinge when he got one, whereas his brothers could shoot anything thing that wasn’t human and not feel a thing. Then, one day, one of the boys shot a squirrel but didn’t kill it. It was in pain. The other boys said, “Just shoot it in the head!” Rick couldn’t do it. He couldn’t just walk up to it and kill it, so he brought it home and patched it up (that’s also when he learned “Squrrids will bite the shit outta you!”). That was the point, when he was about 16, when he realized that hunting helpless animals for “fun” was just cruel, and he hung up his guns. After that he ended up trying to heal up several animals that were the result of a botched shot. Some died, some didn’t. He saved an owl once. Rick is anything but “soft.” He’s just thoughtful and compassionate (sometimes!) I’m anything but soft. Again, I say, both of us could kill an animal if we had to. Neither of us could do it just for “fun.”

As to the Angus….I just wondered what kind of feed they’re given. What kind of inoculations? How are they any different from regular cows, except that the meat tastes better just because of the kind of cow they are. And if @jonsblond‘s husband gets a whole cow once a year, isn’t that plenty of meat to last for a year? And is it any “healthier” than any other kind of domestic meat?

Aethelwine's avatar

@Dutchess_III To answer some of your questions, I would need to call my husband (he’s the one that helps care for these animals, not me), and I’m not going to bother him at work right now. I’m busy cleaning house and preparing food for Thanksgiving, so some of your questions will need to wait until Friday, at least. Sorry.

No we don’t HAVE to kill our own animals for meat, just like most gardeners don’t HAVE to grow their own vegetables. I mean, there are vegetables at Walmart right? Why go to the trouble of growing them yourself when you can buy them at the store? We kill the animals and grow our vegetables because it is cheaper and it tastes much, much better. It’s also nice knowing where exactly your food is coming from.

Dutchess_III's avatar

You can’t compare a vegetable to an animal, @jonsblond. And sure, it’s nice to know where your food is coming from, but that’s not really a consideration for most Americans. In addition to your deer you’re having turkey and all kinds of other stuff that you got at the grocery store.

Anyway, yeah, I’m cooking too. I’m slaughtering onions and celery and port mushrooms and grapes for my super secret stuffing! (Ooops. It’s not a secret anymore is it!) It all came from Dillions because those foods don’t grow here this time of year, plus I wouldn’t know where to start growing grapes or mushrooms and stuff. Plus I don’t have a cow to make butter with so that comes from the store too. And smoke sauce, and potatoes. And apples.

WestRiverrat's avatar

My turkey, duck and pheasant for the turducken came from the public hunting land down the river, my mushrooms, onions and asparagus came from a public access area, my potatoes, pickles, and peppers all came from my or my friends gardens. The cream and pumpkins came from the Amish colony down the road.

The only thing I can think of that we are having this weekend that was store bought are the oysters in the oyster stuffing. Altho you have given me an idea, next year I will have to make the oyster stuffing with mountain oysters, then there won’t be anything I didn’t collect myself.

Dutchess_III's avatar

THAT IS GROSS @WestRiverrat!!!!

Fine. You are having a noble Thanksgiving. But what about the rest of the year? Do you ever eat bananas? Mushrooms? Stuff that isn’t even grown in your part of the country, or maybe not even in your country at all? My only point is that coming up with the stories of how noble it is, or that you’re hunting for your family, or that it’s more healthy for you, or that you do it because you want to know where your food is from is bologna. It’s just a smoke screen to cover up the fact that people hunt because they like to, and the killing of the animal is the best part. It’s just a lot of “fun” killing something, and there is nothing noble or moral about it.
End of story. So…just be honest, and I guess we can finally stop talking.

WestRiverrat's avatar

Actually I think it is more moral to go kill my own meat, than to hire someone else to do it for me.

But then if you hire it done, you can sit in your ivory tower and tell those of us that do your dirty work how nasty and immoral we are.

JilltheTooth's avatar

Geez, @Dutchess_III , you’re like a dog with a bone here, determined to make someone say you are justified in assuming all hunters are sadistic (your word, not mine). Look up the word. You’re way off base.

Mat74UK's avatar

@JilltheTooth – I think she may be after a little more than that as I said I enjoy it somewhere near the top of this thread!

rangerr's avatar

@Dutchess_III Are you vegetarian? ‘scuse me if you already answered that somewhere..

Mikewlf337's avatar

@rangerr I already asked her that. She is an Omnivore.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@JilltheTooth I agree…the question was harsh. I don’t believe all hunters are really sadist, not in the literal sense of the word, and I said so to @jonsblond. I apologize for the wording of the question.

@rangerr The whole point is, how could someone kill an animal and not feel any sadness or remorse? I have said that if I HAD to, I could kill and animal for food for food, but I wouldn’t take any pleasure in it, like some people do. That’s all.

And….that’s all!

rangerr's avatar

@Dutchess_III Who says that hunters don’t feel sadness or remorse for what they do? You eat meat. You take pleasure in eating animals. You take pleasure in the fact that someone has killed an animal for your consumption. But God forbid that you should have to do it… so you continue to fuel the hunting and meat industry by purchasing meat from the store. I just don’t understand how you can complain about hunters doing their jobs, when you eat meat.

Fuck. I’m a vegetarian and very much against hunting, but I’ve ended up here defending them from your nonsense accusations.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@rangerr Most hunters aren’t “doing a job.” They’re having fun.

Mat74UK's avatar

@Dutchess_III – So when doing a job you must not enjoy it?

rangerr's avatar

@Dutchess_III How the hell do you think meat ends up in a store?

WestRiverrat's avatar

In my state they issue tags for about 20% of the deer population, just under half of those tags get filled every year. So 90% of the deer population will live for another year, barring predation or accidents. The average age of the deer harvested is 3.5 years.

With the possible exception of some specialty markets, 100% of the cattle raised for beef will be slaughtered before they are a year old.

Which gives the animal more chance to die of old age?

JilltheTooth's avatar

@Dutchess_III : Wow, you must know a really lot of people if you know “most hunters”. Such a gross generalization is just silly.

Aw, hell. This is beyond absurd. I’m unfollowing.

Mikewlf337's avatar

@Dutchess_III I feel that this question you have asked is not a actual question. It was just a way for you to accuse us of sadism. It was a trick question because the question says hunting for sport instead of hunting for food. You obviously condemn both. Most hunters don’t hunt for just a trophy. They hunt for the meat. I never met a hunter who only hunted for the trophy and I know many hunters.

Aethelwine's avatar

@WestRiverrat That sounds delicious. Can I bring my family for dinner?

@Dutchess_III You obviously aren’t going to listen to anyone here that has given you an intelligent, honest reason for why they hunt. You are going to believe what you want. I do think you asked this just to spout off about your hatred for hunters and why you think you are better than them. All the hunters I know are animal lovers, but you’ll never believe me. I’m done here as well. Happy Thanksgiving.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Mikewlf337 I’m not saying you must not enjoy a job. But a job is something you have to do whether you like it or not. Hunting for sport is not something that anyone has to do. They do it because they like it.

Newsflash guys. I honestly don’t have any feelings, one way or the other, about hunting and hunters. I just know that I could not do it myself. When I was in college my boyfriend asked if I wanted to go quail hunting. I said sure. Well, he shot this bird and it caused me to jump. Then he told me to go get it and walked away. I went to the now-dead bird and picked it up and the tears just started pouring down my face. I cradled it in my arm like a baby, and stroked it’s beautiful beautiful iridescent feathers. There were peacock colors in it’s feathers…and it was dead. It’s head was hanging grotesquely. I carried him back to my boyfriend, sobbing, and he and his friend laughed at me, laughed at the way I was carrying it. He said, “You’re supposed to carry it by its feet, not cradled in your arm like a baby!” I just handed him the bird and didn’t say anything. A little later his friend, who was an asshat big time anyway, shot a bird that was across the river. There was no way he could retrieve it. That pissed me off so bad. I finally just went back to the truck to wait. The whole experience just horrified me. But that’s me. Each to his own.

You know, this was just a question I tossed out, and the reaction to it just astonished me! I told another user in PM “I’ve created a monster! Holy cow!” I’m sure much of the reaction was to the way it was worded, because if I’d simply said, “Do you understand how anyone could kill an animal and call it fun?” I’m sure the reaction would not have been like this. I find it very, very interesting though, the way people started coming up with all the justifications and on and on, instead of just saying “We like it.” At least @Mikewlf337 and @Mat74UK were brutally honest with their answers. They like it, period. Notice I didn’t jump in a rip them up one side and down the other? That’s because it’s none of my business what they enjoy, and it’s not illegal. I’m sure I do things for enjoyment that others can’t understand.

And so it goes.

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