HSUS Bill Would Ban Hunting with Hounds in Calif.

It's clear that while "animal rights" groups would ban all hunting practices if they could, they focus their attacks on what they perceive as its most controversial forms--issues in which they believe they can arouse public sympathy or even drive a wedge between hunters.

Take the use of hounds. Anti-hunters have made its prohibition a top priority, attacking it in several states including Maine, Vermont and, yet again, California. A bill sponsored by the vehemently anti-hunting Humane Society of the United States was introduced late last week that would ban the use of dogs to hunt bears and bobcats in California.

The anti's argue that the use of hounds to hunt wildlife is somehow unfair or cruel, which couldn't be farther from the truth, but they have won over a few ignorant hearts. Sadly even some hunters have fallen for their ploy. Take the comments section of this very blog. I am disheartened by how quickly some hunters are willing to throw their fellow sportsmen under the bus, believing their preferred hunting methods to be somehow safe from attack.

They need to wake up. It's hound hunters now, but it could be grouse and duck hunters next. Anyone who thinks the anti's would be content to stop at hound hunting is either foolish or doesn't understand an anti's mentality. The anti believes hunting birds with dogs is just as evil as hunting bears--one could argue it's hunters who've helped him draw the distinction and determine his first line of attack.

So, let's not kid ourselves into thinking we can safeguard wingshooting or any other form of hunting by appeasing the enemy. That only encourages him. The only way to truly ensure the future of hunting is to draw a line in the sand, band together as one unified, pro-hunting voice, and defeat anti-hunting attacks of all stripes, including those against hunting with hounds.

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