Thursday, April 19, 2012
- Talking Sense To Animal Rights Nuts
Every autumn I take a group of guys out to a hunting preserve called Wingpointe in Hamburg Pennsylvania, to do a little Pheasant hunting. It's a great place and offers a top shelf service. It's perfect for Wall Street guys with enough shooting experience to get a little taste of what it's like to do some actual hunting. I've been going there for years now.
Pheasant aren't native to this area and don't do well when released into the wild because of all the hawks and coyote's. Let them go and in just a few days they're food for something else. So at Wingpointe they release farm raised bird the morning you go into the field with the dogs, and hopefully you can get to them before the coyotes do. since they're not native to the area you aren't changing the natural environment by killing them, so the State of Pennsylvania considers this slaughtering farm animals. So you can go almost any time of year (there is no 'season') and shoot as many birds as you're willing to pay for.
Regrettably, in recent months Wingpointe has attracted the attention of a group of Animal Rights activists who have taken to hanging around the place trying to goad the staff and patrons into some sort of violence by shoving a video camera in their faces. The director of the group then posts the video on Youtube as evidence of what he calls the 'sickness and corruption' of Pennsylvania.
He only makes an absolute minimum of sense but he's not really trying to. He's just trying to get all the right catch phrases into his video so that the high school kids who watch it on Youtube will all think it's a terrible thing he's trying to prevent and how brave he is to do it. If I'm not mistaken, they had a truck parked just outside the entrance of Wingpointe while we were there last autumn. I'm pretty sure I waved to them as we drove past. With any luck that annoyed them back.
since Bob Barker (yes the price is right guy) has donated 1 million dollars to their group, they've bought a bunch of unmanned mini-drones to fly their video camera over the facility and take picture of the activities that they can't get a look at from the road. Last time they did it, someone (either a patron or staffer) shot the drone down. They're flying over a wing shooting facility so what did they expect?
Anyway, seeing that video on Youtube today prompted me to send a note to Cindy who runs the office out there, to ask how much it costs to come out there for a day of 'unmanned aerial drone shooting'. She knew I was kidding but sent me a response anyway.
What Wingpointe has done in response to this intrusion, is have themselves declared an FAA approved heliport which prohibits any automated flying for a distance of three miles. They then spoke to their neighbors (all hunting fans - of course... it's Pennsylvania) and they agreed to prohibit access to their property for the animal rights nuts. So now the whackos are stuck sitting in their vehicles on the public road, and doing their best to be intimidating and annoying to the customers as they drive past them at 25 mph.
There is nothing illegal about what Wingpointe does at all. You might not think it's 'hunting' because it isn't exactly fair chase, but even if that's so, at worst it's a no more than an exhausting way to slaughter farm animals. And what this animal rights nut in the videos refers to as 'victims' I refer to as 'dinner'. It just doesn't strike me as that big a deal. And I don't think reasonable people will argue the point.
You might not like the idea of shooting farm raised birds. OK, fair enough. I'm certainly willing to discuss it with you if you like. I'll explain my position and you can explain yours and if it turns out in the end that we disagree, I'll respect your right to feel that way so long as you do the same with me. So long as reasonable people are involved, not everything needs to end in a shouting match.
And that's the thing about this narcissistic crazy person running this animal rights group. He thinks the only way to persuade people is with propaganda videos showing how he's capable of annoying people so intensely that he can incite them to violence. It seems to me that if he really believed his position was a rational one he'd be out there arguing it calmly in the free market of ideas. Instead he's hiding behind a tree with a video camera trying to get embarrassing video.
So on one side you have him and guys like him doing what they do - engaging in narcissism invading people's privacy and shooting embarrassing videos. And on the other side you have guys like me - arguing a point calmly and rationally.
You decide who's making sense here.