January 27, 2023

Why Johnny Won’t (Be Able To) Hunt

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Republished with permission:

Why Johnny Won’t (Be Able To) Hunt
by John C. Street

(After working to qualify as a member of the prestigious state and national outdoor writers associations in the 1990s, the author said he began to notice the groups’ emphasis changing from supporting hunting to praising the “New World Order” being orchestrated by the United Nations. His final transition from compromising and recognizing “gray” areas, to realizing that everything in his world is either black or white, caused him to resign his membership in the seven clubs, associations and organizations to which an outdoor writer would be expected to belong. – ED)

In the December 2008/January 2009 edition of FIELD & STREAM, Conservation Editor Bob Marshall did an excellent job of shining a bright light onto a dark shadow that is falling over hunting. Bob’s well researched report, “Why Johnny Won’t Hunt” eviscerated the apathy that is eroding participation in this eons old pastime; Johnny won’t hunt because we won’t take him.

With unflinching honesty and solid research to support his conclusion, Bob clearly explained the economic and societal issues that have led to this sad state of affairs, deducing that despite these impediments the future of hunting depends on current participants making a commitment to introducing young people to the outdoors.

From the perspective that his cited research provides, Bob’s conclusion is both logical and correct. But his conclusion is like saying the Green Bay Packers didn’t make it to the Super Bowl this year because they let Brett Favre go. That may very well be true but it is far from a complete explanation.

It’s hard to pinpoint the exact date that hunting (and fishing) began to change but historical evidence points to the late 1970s and early 1980s. Without being overly pessimistic about this change, let’s agree this is when hunting and fishing began to shed their utilitarian “hunter-gatherer” traditions and tied their future to commercialization.

Today, according to a report (“Hunting and Fishing: Bright Stars of the American Economy” available at www. nssf.org) prepared for the National Shooting Sports Foundation and the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation, hunting and fishing are “a $76 billion economic force” here in the United States. Furthermore, the report adds, through the purchases of licenses, related gear and travel, hunters and anglers “directly support 1.6 million jobs … And they generate $25 billion a year in federal, state and local taxes.”

Only the passage of time will tell if this “change” was for better or worse but again, without rendering judgment, this is the sword that hunting and fishing will either live or die by. Let it be recognized, however, that under this new paradigm, hunting and fishing have become just another commercialized pastime. The very uniqueness that lured many of us old-timers to the field and stream in the first place must simply “take a number” along with all the other pastimes competing for the hours in our children’s day.

Ironically, at about the same time hunting and fishing began evolving into a “$76 billion economic force,” a new environmental ethos was taking root here in the United States and, not surprisingly given their historically well documented conservation background, hunters and anglers embraced this newborn environmental awakening.

Today, according to a report (“The NODOG Cluster” available at www.greentrackinglibrary.com) researched and published by the Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise, this environmental movement has blossomed into a multi-billion dollar, tightly controlled consortium of both fringe and “mainstream environmental” organizations that is attempting to blur the line between traditional hunter/angler groups and the politically potent environmental movement.

Yet, while many in the hunting and fishing community advocate for partnerships between this new, politically potent environmentalism and traditional hunter/angler groups, there is mounting evidence that suggests this will have dangerous consequences for the future of hunting and fishing and may, ultimately, do more to keep Johnny from hunting and fishing than all the economic and societal issues outlined in Bob Marshall’s excellent article.

Like any other “industry,” the hunting and fishing “economic force” is susceptible to and controlled by the market that purchases the “goods” it produces. So, while some of us stodgy old-timers might argue that the array of high-tech electronic and mechanical gadgets and gizmos being hauled – or hauling us – into the woods these days has nothing to do with the real act of hunting, they are the manifestation of a free-market economy working as it should.

However, at the same time those “goods” are being manufactured by the individual companies and corporations that collectively make up the “$76 billion economic force,” their suppliers (the other companies and corporations that extract and harvest raw materials from the Earth) are under attack by the very environmental groups who want hunters and anglers to be their partners. But that, alas, is not worst of it.

Unbeknownst to – or, perhaps, unacknowledged by – most who advocate for a partnership between “mainstream environmental groups” and the “$76 billion economic force,” there is a little known document called “Agenda 21” that spells out prescriptions and action plans for, among a long list of other frightening things, taking away your right to own firearms and curtailing your access to public land. So what, you might ask, does Agenda 21 have to do with Johnny not being able to hunt and fish in the future? Plenty.

Agenda 21 is, as described on the Wikipedia web site (www.wikipedia.com), “a program run by the United Nations related to sustainable development. It is a comprehensive blueprint of action to be taken globally, nationally and locally by organizations of the UN, governments, and major groups in every area in which humans impact on the environment.” The “major groups” referred to in this description are identified in the text of the Agenda 21 document as Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) or, in laymen’s terms, our “main stream environmental groups,” operating as not-for-profit, 501(c)(3) entities.

While it would be appropriate at this point to list the names of the NGOs – the “main stream environmental groups” – who are complicit in aiding and abetting the UN’s effort to deny you your Second Amendment Rights and prevent you from accessing the “Public’s Land” (please look at the “Wildlands Project” while you’re at the Wikipedia’s UN web site), it will serve a much greater purpose if you would go back to the Green Tracking Library and learn this on your own. Suffice to say, you’re in for a shock.
As this nation’s original conservationists, hunters and anglers have a long and distinguished history of being at the forefront of the fight to protect and preserve wildlife and wild places. It was logical, therefore, that when the environmental ethos took hold back in the late 1970s and early 1980s, hunters and anglers would put their time and money into addressing these new environmental concerns.

But the “mainstream environmental groups” that hunters and anglers allied with in those early days of this nation’s environmental awakening have chosen a new course, a course more aligned with the “Sustainable Development” initiatives of the United Nations than with making certain that Johnny always has a place to hunt and fish (Note: For a full explanation of the consequences of the UN’s “Sustainable Development” initiative which is just one part of Agenda 21, please see “Understanding Sustainable Development: A Guide for Public Officials” at www.americanpolicy.org). Now those environmental groups want to co-opt hunters and anglers to be their “Poster Children,” sacrificing a century of conservation credibility on the pantheistic alter of Agenda 21.

What is most alarming, however, is that several national hunter/angler organizations (as detailed in the Green Tracking Library) have already joined ranks with the environmentalists. Lured by the enormous foundation largess bestowed on those willing to convert to the new green Agenda (21), they seem unable to comprehend or, are unwilling to publicly acknowledge their support for, the socio/economic Armageddon that will ensue when the sovereignty of the United States is subjugated to the socialistic prescriptions of the United Nations.

Hunting and fishing are indeed bright stars of the American economy. The question that needs to be asked, therefore, isn’t “Why Johnny won’t hunt.” The question that all the members of this “economic force” need to ask is, “Will Johnny even be able to hunt and fish in the future?”

Note: This article and many more like it can be found in The Outdoorsman magazine. Please click this link to a PDF page where you can print out a form and subscribe to the magazine. The work of George Doval, editor of The Outdoorsman, is arguably the finest work to be found anywhere in print or online publications.