Hunters shouldn’t be under fire

Read the original article by Paige Galea at here.

When did it start to become OK to publicly send out a murder call on someone?

As far as I know, this hasn’t and never will be an acceptable thing to do.

Growing up I was taught to treat others with respect. Although I sometimes may not agree with their opinion, I don’t disrespect or threaten someone because I we don’t see eye to eye.

Telling someone that they should go kill themselves, wishing a horrible death upon someone and their family or publicly shaming them, is wrong. And in fact, a chargeable offence.

As some of you may recall, one of my first columns as the Caledon Enterprise’s, outdoors columnist, titled To all my haters, expressed similar thoughts.

Unfortunately, the threats haven’t stopped and the hating hasn’t lessened.

Something that is very important to me is educating people — whether you are hunter, anti-hunter or non-hunter — on the importance of hunting. No matter the threat or disgusting, degrading comments I receive, I will continue to try to educate, and I will always be a proud hunter.

To all those that feel like I need to be hunted down myself and be fed to bears, what kind of person does that make you?

What kind of person are you if you take my photos off the internet, post them all over social media asking for someone to hunt me down and kill me? 
Because I know the kind of person I am, and being a hunter certainly doesn’t make me a bad person. In fact, I believe it gives me more of an understanding and respect for animals than most can relate to.

Hunting has been a way of life since the beginning of time, whether you like it or not.

To know exactly where my food comes from. I know that it is 100 per cent organic, that I provided for my friends and family. Knowing that my hands where the only ones that touched my food means a whole more to me than going to a grocery store and picking something off a shelf ever will. 

Despite some beliefs, hunting doesn’t make me less of a human. In fact, it actually brings me closer to animals, allowing me to develop more feelings toward animals than most people at grocery store, or the person that doesn’t eat meat but harbours animals in cages or indoors, or drives a vehicle with leather seats, or eats a salad for lunch. In reality, our bare existence as humans affects animals and habitats all over the world — far more than hunters ever will.

Hunters actually allow some species to thrive by managing populations, which is a huge part of conservation.

Everything I am doing is 100 per cent legal. I receive a tag for harvesting an animal, given the season, I follow rules and guidelines to ensure I am the most ethical hunter I can be.

Can you say the same thing? Are you being the most ethical person you can be?

I know that threatening someone is illegal. You can be charged, you can go to jail.

I will be taking these threats more seriously, for each threat, especially local threats that I receive, I will be reporting it to the police. 
Any other hunter reading this who receives threats, you should do the same.

For years now, I try to just laugh at the idiocy, but it just takes one person to take these threats the wrong way and it could change lives forever, as it did recently to a young lady who committed suicide after receiving online hate from animal rights activists.

And I know this is not just happening within the hunting community — bullying is everywhere.

Please, be more aware of what your words could do to someone. Though you may be behind a screen, it doesn’t make hurtful comments meaningless.

We all have our right to stand up for what we believe in, but in no way is it OK to threaten or bully someone.

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