Hunting for sport guilt?

Discussion in 'Hunting Forum' started by DruidKing, Feb 24, 2013.

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  1. DruidKing

    DruidKing New Member

    Hey everyone. I got to ask of those hunters who hunt purely for the sport of it, do you ever have a sense of remorse or guilt? I'm not talking about people who hunt for food, but those hunters who just go out hunting for the joy of it. There just seems to be something wrong with the idea of killing an animal, not out of necessity, but out of joy. Like bull fighting in Spain. What exactly is enjoyable about killing an animal just because you can? What would be the difference between hunting a deer, and deliberately running over a stray dog with you car just because it was there to be killed. I think animals are like us in that they feel fear, and they suffer, and they want to live just as much as any of us do.
  2. winds-of-change

    winds-of-change The Balota's Staff Member

    I'll be watching this thread closely. :cool:

  3. Rick1967

    Rick1967 Well-Known Member

    Hey Druidking, are you here to start a fight or what?

    There are many people who hunt for the sport of it. I am one of them. I would not waste the meat. I would either eat it myself or donate it to someone in need. But lets face it, it is much easier to go to the grocery store. I hunt for the opportunity to be out in the woods with my son and our friends.
  4. winds-of-change

    winds-of-change The Balota's Staff Member

    There will be no fight. At the first sign of a fight this thread is closed.
  5. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

    Times 2. While we generally have no qualms about speaking your mind, we do not permit trolls. If you do not understand the term, send any of the Mods a PM asking for explanation.

    To attempt to give you a personal answer- I hunt. I eat what I hunt, with the exception of nuisance/ pest animals. Example- my lady has multiple wild bird feeders. I do not take a 12 g and go blast away at songbirds. I will even ignore the two squirrels that hang out in the back yard, and mooch sunflower seed- they are fairly well mannered.

    However, the raccoons are another matter. Get a clean shot at one, he is on his way to becoming Davy Crockett's hat. They not only destroy bird feeders and bird houses, but will try to fish eggs or baby birds out of the nest.

    I tolerate blue jays, like bluebirds, and will cap a crow in a blink. Ground hogs/ prairie dogs/ coyotes- destructive as hell- and fair game. Guilt? No.

    Please do not ascribe human values or emotion to animals. False and rather silly.
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2013
  6. NOVA

    NOVA New Member

    Hunting is a tradition. My parents did not pass that tradition along. I would like very much to go hunting again as it has been decades since I hunted squirrels with my boyhood friend in the woods next to his house. Hunting is expensive and not everyone has the opportunity or knows where they can go to hunt. I just bought a nice deer rifle, knowing I may never get a chance to shoot a deer with it. If I ever do go hunting ( I have some relatives who might invite me one day) I will consider it an honor and a privelige. And if I learn to track, shoot, kill and skin a deer, I will have learned skills that I may never need to use, but its good to know I can do it if I have to.
  7. DruidKing

    DruidKing New Member

    I'm not trolling. I think it is a perfectly legit question and I think I made perfectly legit points. As I said, hunting for food is one thing. Hunting for sport is another. And all I asked was does anyone who hunts for sport ever feel guilty for killing an animal unnecessarily? Saying I'm trolling just because of that would be like one of those anti gun liberals saying you were trolling them for asking what they planned to do if 3 armed men broke into their home and attacked their wife and daughters.

    I get it that hunting is a great bonding experience. It helps bring you closer to your friends and family. And maybe it gives you a deeper appreciation of nature, I don't know. But if that's what it is about, wouldn't camping suffice?

    I have to concede I didn't think of pest animals when I started this thread. They can be problematic and destructive, so I can see a potential necessity for dealing with them in a most terminal fashion.

    But I have to say I disagree agree with your statement about ascribing human values and emotions to animals being silly. While yes it is true that animals certainly don't think in the complex manners that humans do, they certainly are not emotionless or (I don't think) soulless. I do believe animals (especially domesticated animals like dogs) have a sense of human values. They demonstrate loyalty, compassion, friendship, as well as fear and anger and sadness. And wild animals also to a more limited extent. A while ago I remember reading an article where they did studies with chimps and found that often times a chimp will turn an upside down turtle back onto it's feet. Maybe I am reading too much into this, but that sounds like an act of mercy to me. There are recorded cases of dolphins bringing people lost at sea back to shore. These don't sound like mindless, emotionless creatures with out any sense of values to me.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm not on the PETA bandwagon. I could happily eat steak for dinner for the rest of my life. Does that make me a hypocrite? I don't think so, I'm not slaughtering the cows for the joy of slaughtering. But at the same time is it not also true that you can tell a lot about a person based on how treats something that he doesn't have to treat kindly?

    Am I really the only gun lover who has this line of thought? Something tells me I am going to be in the strict minority in this particular thread...
  8. nitestalker

    nitestalker New Member

    The Sport of hunting can be for harvesting food or controlling wild life. Because man has intervened in to nature and protects animals from disease starvation etc. We must cull herds by age and or sex. The Sport of hunting is used to preserve the health of these herds. In the case of large meat eating animals lions, bears, wolves etc. which are often not consumed in our society the meat is left for other animals to consume. It is rarely wasted in nature.
    The Sport of Hunting is used to protect people pets and domesticated animals and property. The act of simply killing animals is in no way related to the Sport of Hunting.:)
  9. winds-of-change

    winds-of-change The Balota's Staff Member

    I would think if those who trophy hunt for sport felt guilty about it, they wouldn't do it.

    I have never hunted but I think appreciating nature through hunting is very different than just camping. To hunt, you must match wits with your prey in their environment. You have to know the lay of the land and the habits of the animal you hunt. I've noticed many hunters plan their hunt all year by setting trail cameras and observing the habits of the animal they will be hunting when it is hunting season. You must be attuned to all that's around you and use many different skills not needed in camping. I think hunting is a very complex sport that takes great knowledge and skill to be good at it.

    I, too, am an avid animal lover. I have always had a soft spot for animals and am very compassionate when it comes to critters. I would never abuse an animal but I think I could hunt if I knew I was a great shot. But I'm not. I would love to fill my freezer with hog meat. Hunting is not the same as abusing an animal. Almost all hunters I know want a clean kill and feel bad if that doesn't happen. Almost all track a wounded animal to find it and end it's suffering. Most hunters I know eat what they kill. Why should they feel any guilt?

    You are on a gun forum. People here hunt. They hunt legally and ethically.
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2013
  10. Axxe55

    Axxe55 The Apocalypse Is Coming.....

    i use to hunt many years ago. the reasons i don't anymore is simply because i just don't have the time to devote to it like i would need to.

    hunting is a tradition. it's about providing food or needed neccesities for the household. the American Indians when they hunted wasted nothing of their kills. hunting is conservation of the species that are hunted.

    hunting provides revenue that supports conservation of the habitat and wildlife. hunting also keeps the game species in balance.

    not feeling guilty about hunting has to do with morals and ethics. the way i was brought up, if you killed it, we ate it. we did hunt for sport, but we never took shots that could just injure and animal and we ate what we killed. we learned to respect our prey and to never shoot anything just to kill it. even a nuisance animal deserved a clean kill.

    i love animals and wildlife, and always have. i still use to hunt though. i have three coons that eat every night with the cats on the back porch. they get along and cause no problems, so i would never kill them. no reason and would serve no purpose other than to just kill something.

    i know of several hunters who do hunt for trophies, but donate the meat to shelters. personally i see nothing wrong with this. it's provides a service and they get a trophy.
  11. hairbear1

    hairbear1 Active Member

    This is a subject that like "which is the best varmint rifle,calibre,brand gun etc" that will on it's day start a fight in pub no worries at all.
    The Aussie hunting forum I'm a member of have had this type of discussion quite a few times and it's something that is definately emotive.

    Monkeys and possibly Dolphins would probably go close to "feeling" pain but until we all turn into Dr Dolittles that is going to be a moot point.

    For me I have no worries about shooting most animals whether it be for tucker or for feral pest destruction and where possible will utilise what I've shot either as food or for skins.

    Now I've also sat and watched pigs,goats,feral cats,foxes,rabbits and a few other animals in their natural habitat feeding,hunting or just playing around and really it's a great feeling to be just out in the bush enjoying the freedom of the bush and even better if you've got your son or daughter with you and you showing them the facts of life in the wild.

    Hunters are more in touch with animals than the PETA,Animal Lib clowns because we regularly have the last say on whether an animal lives or dies and the majority of us can't and won't stand for cruelty to any animal and will do our utmost to drop an animal on the spot or put an animal out of it's misery to the best of our ability sort of an unwritten code of the hunter.

    To put human type emotions on animals is the work of the tree huggers and Bambi Brigade and Walt Disney has a lot to answer to in my opinion by giving animals human emotions in his/their movies as it's all about putting animals on a human level by claiming this sort of rubbish.

    Just look at the new money spinner by animal libbers by engaging lawyers to "speak" on behalf of animals in court for cases of cruelty,biggest pack of lies and corruption ever but if there's money to be made and headlines then that's where you'll find the lawyers and tree huggers,regards
  12. eatmydust

    eatmydust New Member

    I see no need to fight over these questions.

    The reasons that I enjoy hunting are many and varied; from time in God's great outdoors, to quality time spent with friends, to the bonus of excellent fare from the creatures I am blessed to harvest.

    I quit hunting for a very short time about 30 years ago, after putting a spine shot on a deer and watching it thrash in agony. I chose to slit it's throat and hold it's head back until it ceased breathing. I was somewhat tramatic for me, I was in my early 20s at the time and I didn't hunt at all for the next 2 years.

    After reflection on whether I could hunt and kill again, I realized that if I was going to enjoy the flesh of other creatures, I was going to accept the responsibility of the taking of the life that rendered it. I never want to think that the nutrition and flavor I enjoy so much is derived in some simple, easy, antiseptic way. Meat and fish do not start out cello wrapped in the butcher's case.

    Life is precious to each and every one of us. We should understand that there is sacrifice to be made to maintain it.
    Hopefully, there will always be those ready, willing and able to do the dirty work necessary for the maintanence of society.

    BTW, I've never heard anyone ask those that eat meat, yet refuse to kill it, about their refusal!
  13. JonM

    JonM Moderator

    Discounting poaching, even sport hunting when it comes to wildlife generates massive ammount of money that goes to helping promote the hunt species. Look at the elk moose bear whitetail or any other species that was approaching extinction. Sport hunting does more and generates more to promote wildlife growth than all the animal rights groups combined.

    Want to save the california condor harp seal polar bear etc?? open them up to hunting. Hunters and trophy hunters study actual animal habit and construct envirinments to promote the species they hunt.

    Hunters dont just talk about saving the critter they actually do something about it.

    100+ years ago people harvested wild life for food today hunting is about preserving wildlife in order to generate healthy trophy animals.

    Outlaw hunting and you will see poaching without control become the norm and populations of species crash.
  14. treehugger49

    treehugger49 New Member

    Killing an animal, or harvesting a fish for that matter, isn't synonomous with hunting (or fishing). The act of hunting is a process that involves a series of activities that all cullminate to the end of the actual harvest - and most of the time the harvest is not certain or guaranteed, by any means. And at each point in the process there is joy, fullfillment, satisfaction, appreciation of nature, etc.

    In other somewhat trite words, it's a journey - not a destination.

    From cleaning that favorite hunting rifle, to hanging your stands, to tending those food plots, monitoring those trail cameras, outfitting your truck to meet your hunting needs, to shopping for camp menus, and countless other related activities, the hunting experience meets different people's needs in different ways. Pulling the trigger may or may not occur, but we do it anyway because it gives us joy and fullfillment.

    And I won't even go into the concept of sportsmen being the true conservationists, or the money we contribute to the well-being of the species we pursue....
  15. willfully armed

    willfully armed New Member

    I hunt purely for the enjoyment of it.

    The delicious meat is an award from it.
  16. RUG3R44

    RUG3R44 New Member

    This thread reminds me I need to renew my hunting/fishing license.
    Turkey seasons not too far away. And yes, if I kill one I'm gonna eat it.
    Most of the critters I shoot are a threat to my pets and chickens, such as
    coyotes, raccoons, stray dogs, etc.
  17. davva360

    davva360 New Member

    Personally I would not hunt unless I intended to use as much of the animal as possible, with the exception of nuisance animals.

    I know a lot of people that do hunt and none of them do it just for fun. They hunt hogs and deer for the meat.

    Having said that, as long as they kill the animal as cleanly as possible, I would not have a problem with someone hunting just for the fun of it.
  18. trip286

    trip286 New Member

    I'm gonna throw my $.2 in.

    To hunt for food, or to supplement your food and income (by saving the money that would be spent at the grocery store), is a (fairly) pure and noble act. This goes to man's nature in providing sustenance for self and family. I don't think anyone would disagree with that. And, as others have mentioned, with the regulations placed on hunting these days, hunters, the killers of animals of all types, are the BIGGEST block of conservation activists there is. Many game laws, although certainly not all, and possibly not even most, are supported by hunters country wide. The vast majority have the sense to know that if some things are unregulated, then some of the biggest game animals will be hunted to scarcity. No hunter wants that, and many of them seem happy to know that their money spent on such things as hunting licenses are going into conservation efforts, mostly. I say it's a (fairly) pure and noble act, only because some people hunt protected species or out of season. This goes against the grain of doing it in the regulated manner, and protecting wild game for future hunting. If you pay attention, many state's departments of wildlife and fisheries are very attentive to populations of game fish and animals, and regularly change the rules of hunting to reflect the (sometimes) over population of certain sizes and genders of game.

    To hunt for a trophy or for a profit is a sickening murder in my opinion. I see nothing wrong with making a trophy of a food kill, or even donating the kill to a need, such as a homeless shelter, boarding school for troubled youths, or even just a down and out widow, and then keeping nothing but a trophy for yourself. But, let's face it, there are some people who travel the world collecting heads. Many of these people donate their kill meat to a local village, or give it to their hired guides to disseminate as they see fit. This is fine, IMO. But, the truth is, there are people out there who go hunting, collect the pelt or head, tusk or horn of the animal killed, and go home, leaving the carcass to rot and go to waste. Example: elephant poaching for ivory, same with rhinos, and the American Bison for their coats.

    Nuisance animals are another story. They regularly cause property damage, and negate conservation efforts. Killing them, to me, is no different than protecting your home, loved ones, and property from a criminal. But they certainly have their place in the natural ecosystem, and do NOT always need to be hunted to extinction.

    As with many things, it's not so much the act itself that is good or bad, but the reasoning behind it, and moral obligations that are taken or not.
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2013
  19. Flat Tire

    Flat Tire New Member

    Where I live in Idaho hunting is more business then anything else. We need hunters to come and put money into the economy. The fish and game helicopters just flew by last week doing the winter counts that will set the hunt numbers for this fall. If the numbers are low then less permits are issued. Wild animals are harvested just like wheat or corn and man decides everything. It is not that big of a deal and it will go on for a long time here. The only real sport hunting I see is with the predators because a lot of them are unrestricted. Which means all kinds of methods are used like electric calls, night vision- you just can't shoot enough coyotes so it turns into "what next". I am waiting for someone to tell me they blew one up.
  20. nitestalker

    nitestalker New Member

    I would really like to see some facts on hunters leaving meat to rot and only taking the heads. The highest level of wild life crime any where in the U.S. is "Wanton Waste" of a game animal.
    Trophy hunting is the target of the PETA propaganda mongers. This BS is like gun control people calling any semi auto an assault rifle. Tropy hunters unlike meat hunters often hunt for years and never fire a round. They are more often harvesting the older animals that are past the prime of table food.
    They on average contribute more to the game and fish revenues as they seldom use their tags.Trophy only hunting areas charge much higher fees and allow only limited harvest of older animals. In every case in every state all edible meat must be packed out.
    As I said if you are spreading the PITA propaganda about hunters leaving meat like the Bison hunters of old provide some facts.:rolleyes:
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