Hunter Safety in Wisconsin - It Shouldn't Be a Debate


[caption id="attachment_6758" align="aligncenter" width="698"]Photo via Wisconsin Dept. of Natural Resources - Photo via Wisconsin Dept. of Natural Resources -[/caption]   Unless you’re with Dick Cheney, you expect to be safe while hunting. Safety is why we have so many regulations on the sport like wearing orange and attending safety classes. It’s something that we strive for all over the nation, and should guarantee to our citizens. If hunters have to go through all of these restrictions though, why are those out in the woods who are harassing hunters not subjected to similar rules to ensure safety? In Wisconsin, hunters are facing a problem that many of us don’t have to deal with: radical animal rights activists threatening their safety simply because they hunt. A major animal rights group in Wisconsin is called Wolf Patrol; it was founded by the infamous domestic terrorist named Rod Coronado. Their original purpose was to protect wolves, but after a Supreme Court judge overturned wolf hunting they have turned to “protect hunting dogs from wolves.” To do this they want to end the use of hunting dogs in bear hunts. The proposal to expand the state’s definition of hunter harassment was in response to Wolf Patrols tactics earlier this year. The group secretly videotaped hunters training their dogs, setting up bait, and preparing for the season. Then they put those video tapes online, participated in and supported the harassment of hunters at their homes, forests, and in the public. Legislators like state representative Adam Jarchow started receiving calls about the harassment and felt it necessary to protect these individuals from a radical group supported and founded by a known terrorist. Some of the stories that he heard were of activists parking in citizen’s driveways, following them into the woods, and parents being worried to leave their children home alone. Therefore, he proposed the “Right to Hunt Act,” which was modeled off of legislation in numerous other states and intended to expand Wisconsin’s current laws against hunter-harassment to include preparing for the hunt, training hunting dogs, and setting up stands. Opponents argue that the legislation will limit the ability of activists to catch illegal hunting activities; however, the law only protects legal hunters and was amended to only affect activists knowingly participated in harassing activities. It was carefully written to not protect illegal activities while promoting the safety of hunters, yet there are some legislators who still stand against the needed law. In response to those questioning the need for the legislation, Jarchow said, "Keep in mind this is a guy who tried to blow up a laboratory in Michigan. When you have that kind of guy out there following hunters, it's not just obnoxious -- it's dangerous." He has a valid point. The leader of Wolf Patrol is a convicted felon who carried out a terrorist attack under the banner of the Animal Liberation Front. He is an animal rights extremist, and he is not afraid to use violence to get his way. Is it not one of the primary jobs of a government to keep its people safe? So, when they have a meticulously crafted law that will protect citizens from dangerous situations and not hinder the rights of those trying to stop illegal activity, why on Earth would a legislator not support it? Sadly, terrorists like Coronado don’t respect the law much. About the law, Coronado said, "We're going to continue doing what we're doing, and this law won't affect our actions one bit." We say pass the law and let them try. He’ll go back to jail and stop bothering the law abiding citizens of this great nation. If he breaks the proposed law then he can face up to 9 months in jail and a fine of $10,000. Hunting should be something that we can participate in safely. This group and others put that safety into jeopardy and must be stopped. This law will do just that. Please support the legislators of Wisconsin who are standing up for the safety of hunters!  


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