Recently I wrote about a proposed constitutional amendment in Maine that is being presented as an amendment to protect the “right” to hunt, trap and fish – LD 11. I also wrote that this proposal was one that I could support and I was wrong to have made the statement using the words that I did because I failed to succinctly express the full truth in my statement. Please let me explain.
Yesterday, I was reading David Trahan’s (Executive Director of the Sportman’s Alliance of Maine) testimony before the Legislative Committee in support of the proposed amendment.
To many, his words ring true, much because most of us have been taught certain things about our federal and state constitutions and the rights we have been granted under those constitution. Men don’t grant rights to anyone. They simply claim ownership of them and hand them back to us in some kind of limited form or fully deny us of such rights.
Trahan states that when this nation was founded, wildlife was “placed in the public trust” and as such we had the right to take it for sustenance. Therefore, Americans have always possessed the right to hunt, fish and trap. I will have to save for another day any debate on this so-called public trust and our inherent right to hunt, fish and trap. I will proceed from the perspective of most that they do have either a right or a privilege.
As Mr. Trahan also pointed out, man decided that in order to sustain game and other wildlife, they must construct laws to limit that activity. What happened to our inherent “right” to hunt, trap and fish when the limitations by law became enforced? Is anything really a “right” when it is controlled by man? We evidently believe so. When men, because they couldn’t maintain viable game populations through their own disciplines, called upon man-governments to do it for them, it began the process of destroying any semblance of a right to hunt. I ask once again, what happened to a so-called “right” to hunt wildlife “placed in the public trust” when at least some of that right was ceded over to government and restricted?
This is not that much different than the argument of sovereignty, in which most people do not understand sovereignty of an individual or a government agency. How are you a sovereign individual? Oh, you might say, “Nobody tells me what to do! I’m my own man!” But you are not. You might be a legend in your own mind, but you are not a sovereign individual. Once a man agrees to become part of a community, whether it is a small as a neighborhood or as large as a nation, they have agreed to relinquish that sovereignty and place it under the control of the government. Your act of relinquishment places decisions about your life into the hands of the controlling government agencies.
In Maine, at some point in time, the full right to hunt, trap and fish, was ceded to the State Government to control and make the decisions for us as to what, when and how we might harvest game. Trahan points this out in his testimony. In reality, the sportsmen have very little control over their perceived right to hunt. What has evolved since the creation of game and wildlife laws, is that the government agency formulated to oversee hunting, trapping and fishing, call the shots. Yup, proposals for new laws can be presented. Sometimes they get through a committee and most times not. You are heard before a committee but if you can’t get by the committee then what has become of your “right” to hunt, trap and fish. If you do get through committee you are at the mercy of the Legislature. Where then is your protected right?
Many believe that an amendment to the Constitution will guarantee, protect or create a “right” to hunt, trap and fish. They are wrong. I have written many times on this subject and stated that unless an amendment mandated or forced the government to do something, it is nothing more than words on a piece of paper.
The proposed LD 11 states, in reference to the right of the people of Maine to hunt, fish and trap, that this right: “may not be infringed.” (emboldening added) This is not a mandate. It does not force the Legislature, the Governor, Law Enforcement, or anybody else to stop any infringement of a person’s right to hunt, trap and fish. Go ask a lawyer – or at least an intelligent and honest one (yeah I know). Or go research it yourself. “May” is not a mandate – only a suggestion.
Further, the amendment says that this non infringement of the right to hunt, trap and fish is subject to “reasonable” laws enacted by the Legislature and “reasonable” rules adopted by the department in charge of management of game, fish and other wildlife. Is a “reasonable” law or rule an infringement? We’ve already established that the protection against infringement is non binding because the lawyers chose “may” instead of “must.”
So, who decides what “reasonable” means? I hope you are beginning to understand.
The amendment establishes that the department in reference is supposed to “promote wildlife conservation and management” and “maintain natural resources in trust for public use” (emboldening added) and this evidently will “preserve the future of hunting and fishing.” Nothing here is a mandate that forces anybody to do anything. What is wildlife conservation? As it is in operation today, wildlife conservation becomes a matter of which social entity has the most dollars and the loudest mouth to force their idealistic perceptions and conceptions of wildlife conservation.
The Department, according to this amendment will “maintain” natural resources. Maintain them how and to what levels of population that will guarantee, protect or create the “right” to hunt, trap and fish? This, of course, is left up to the Department, which is what takes places now. There is no mandate. There is no protection of any right.
The amendment further states that “public hunting and fishing are the preferred means…” (emboldening added) Where is the mandate here that will guarantee, protect or create a “right” to hunt, trap and fish? The Department might “prefer” to use hunting and fishing but what if they decide to import wolves to control populations of deer and moose? Where is the mandate? Where is the protection of any “right” to hunt, trap and fish? And would such a decision be “reasonable?”
The truth is, that while this is better language than previously proposed in other amendments, voters in Maine should not be misled to believe that this amendment, as written, will guarantee, protect or create for Maine citizens, the “right” to hunt, trap and fish.
And on the reverse of this, as I have already read in a few spreads of clap trap nonsense, such an amendment, as written will not destroy the process to petition the state. This should be obvious once you understand this proposal has nothing in it that is a mandate, forcing anybody to do anything.
When I said this amendment was something I could support, that statement was not accurate and I apologize for misleading people, if I did. First, I could not “support” such and amendment in the literal sense because I am not a legal resident of Maine and therefore could not vote for it if I wanted.
My thinking at the time was that while there still were no mandates in the proposal, perhaps the language was such that it might deter the onslaught of lawsuits and referendums that have been piled onto the Pine Tree State. It may, in fact, increase them. It is difficult to assess.
I will work harder to choose my words and the statements I make more carefully.
*Editor’s Note* – A New Hampshire town wants to better manage wildlife on town property – just in excess of 2,500 acres. It is believed too many coyotes are reducing the deer population below numbers desired. As is often the case, animal lovers seem to think managing is more cruel than the savagery of letting “Nature” do it alone. Ignorance driven by emotion.
“Why fool with Mother Nature?” asked Elliot, adding that he’s read that trapping is considered inhumane. “What happened years ago when we weren’t around? They (the animals) all survived.”<<<Read More>>>
The mouse that roared!
Minnesota officials are claiming to have nabbed two old men, 70 and 68 years of age, illegally running traps lines. Officials state they confiscated 638 illegally-set snares. It appears officials have had these two duffers under investigation since 2014.
According to one media report, a northern Minnesota trapper, said these men were not trappers, they were “butchers.” That may be an accurate description…or not, when you consider what 638 traps yielded. If you want to call them trappers, they were extremely poor at what appears to be an illegal enterprise.
Minnesota is claiming this to be the biggest trapping bust in the state’s history. I’m guessing finding 638 traps is big for two men, but for that effort, the state officials report only confiscating one wolf, “17 foxes, five snowshoe hares, two fisher, and one deer that the poachers had illegally taken.” And I repeat all taken, I don’t think the deer was, by at least 638 traps. Astounding!
Charges ranged from not tending traps as required by regulation, unmarked traps, loops in snares sized improperly, unreported or untagged game, etc. Are we to think these two clowns intended to obey the laws after putting out 638 traps? *Note* – According to the trapping rules and regulations of Minnesota, there is no limit on the number of traps one trapper can put out. A trapper is supposed to check traps daily. I doubt two old men could tend a dozen traps each a day.
One person who left a comment at the site of the media report asked, “You spent two years and how many tax dollars following and collecting evidence on these guys and the worst they can get is a 3K fine and a year in jail? Seriously?”
One does wonder why it took 3 years to shut these two guys down.
However, never fear because the idiot wolf lovers, along with their lackeys at the newspaper, are using the event to promote the banning of all trapping to protect wolves, stating how inhumane snaring is. I always have wondered how something to do with animals is called “inHUMANe” when animals aren’t HUMAN…well, at least not in the minds of sane people.
Press Release from the U.S. Sportsman’s Alliance:
Take Action Today! Sportsmen’s Alliance members should contact their Congressman or Congresswoman today and ask them to vote NO on HR 1438. HR 1438 has been assigned to the House Committee on Natural Resources. Members can contact their legislator by using the Sportsmen’s Alliance’s Legislative Action Center.
New York Congresswoman Nita Lowey, a longtime opponent of hunting rights, has introduced legislation that would ban trapping on national wildlife refuge lands. House Resolution 1438 known as the Refuge from Cruel Trapping Act, would ban body gripping, foothold and snare traps on more than 150 million acres of federal land.
In a statement released on her website, Lowey writes: “We must restore the true meaning of ‘refuge’ to the National Wildlife Refuge System.” Additionally, Lowey also quotes Born Free USA, a long-time anti-trapping organization. Their quote incorrectly states that “The mission of the National Wildlife Refuge System is clear: to be an inviolate sanctuary for our native wildlife.”
Despite the lofty rhetoric and misleading statements, the National Wildlife Refuge System was not designed to be sanctuary for animals; instead, it was specifically designed to include hunting, fishing and trapping. Moreover, in 1997 Congress approved the National Wildlife Refuge Improvement Act, which identified hunting, which includes trapping, as a priority use of refuge land. The law was signed by President Bill Clinton. In addition, trapping is an effective tool for controlling predators, which can negatively impact other wildlife on refuge lands.
“It’s clear from her statements that Representative Lowey does not have a firm handle on the purpose of these lands, or how the funds used to manage them for the benefit of all species are derived, ” said Evan Heusinkveld, president and CEO of the Sportsmen’s Alliance. “It’s not surprising that such a distorted view would lead to legislation like this. And it’s no surprise that Representative Lowey is rated a ‘Humane Champion’ by the Humane Society of America’s Legislative Fund.”
Trapping is utilized across the United States, by both federal and state wildlife managers. Refuge land is managed in cooperation with state fish and wildlife agencies. HR 1438 would put a one-size-fits-all federal ban in place for refuges rather than allow state biologists do what is best for individual refuge properties. The traps that would be banned by HR 1438 are the most common and effective devices used by trappers. HR 1438 is a first step to ban hunting on all federal land and should be rejected.
When Maine applied to the fascist United States Federal Government to obtain a permit that would allow for the accidental “taking” of Canada lynx, called an Incidental Take Permit, part of the agreement was that Maine would “provide habitat” in a 22,000 acre management area.
Yesterday, Maine outdoor writer George Smith reported on the upcoming lawsuit hearing by environmentalists to further stop trapping in Maine. In his report he stated, “In addition to the steps taken to limit the possibility of lynx getting caught in traps, the state created(sic) 6,200 acres of prime lynx habitat on state lands north of Moosehead Lake. Ironically, to create that habitat, the state had to significantly increase the harvest of trees there.”
These are the same blooming idiots who would be the first to file a lawsuit against Maine if the state, or any other private land owner, opted to clear-cut 6,200 acres of forest. Why doesn’t anybody see the insanity here?
Insanity does rule…..but,
DON’T GO LOOK!
The now-threatened and soon to be extinct “Obamalynx.”
The Bangor Daily News has a story of Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) capturing of a “brown-phase” black bear, something that is a rare treat in the Eastern United States.
This should be a good opportunity for the idiots who obsess on stopping man from utilization of the resources and to end bear hunting and trapping, and basically all forms of hunting and fishing. If we were to employ their twisted logic then they are going to be saying that this unusual “chocolate” brown black bear became this way from eating junk food used for bait by the bear hunters – probably chocolate bars.
Also, the MDIFW says there has been quite a few more bears trapped this spring during the bear trapping phase of the MDIFW study. Biologists say it’s because of a lack of natural food due to drought. Those who walk on their brains will say this is because bears have been trained to find their food resource at bait sites put out by bear hunters. What else?
And lastly, researchers say they have trapped more female bears this year than usual. Mental midgets that have no life will say this also is the result of baiting and trapping bears. How that can be could be a bit of a mystery but let me take a stab at it. They might say that bear baiting causes a spike in the number of female bears vs. male bears. They might say that because we now have an imbalance of female bears over male bears due to baiting, and that bears are too stupid to remember how to forage away from bait sites, because male bears are even dumber than female bears, all that’s left are female bears, some of which have turned brown by eating chocolate left behind by bear baiting.
Or, these brainless clowns, if they were to see a “brown-phase” black bear, perhaps this is what they see:
And because they are too stupid to get it, I am now a racist in their eyes.
Happy Bear Hunting!