Saturday, September 27, 2008

Happy National Hunting and Fishing Day

This article is from Ted Nugent and was published in Human Events:

There is a powerful, natural force in the fall air, and I, for one, cannot turn my back on it. I know the origin of "conservatism" and the pragmatic, rugged individualism logic that drives it and us.

As a conservationist, I believe in the wise use of our precious life-giving resources and clearly understand man's critical responsibility to the stewardship of our wild ground and our wildlife.

I learned a long time ago that if I wanted to enjoy a fire at Christmas time, that I had to plant trees in the spring. Not to boast, but the Arbor Day Foundation even gave me, your humble Motor City Madman, a conservation award, and I'm just a guitar player. I wonder how many trees Sting or Dave Mathews planted last year.

I hunt, kill animals, start fires, and barbecue my families' daily sacred protein health food. I bait hooks, catch fish and then cook them in garlic and butter. That’s absolute perfection, just as God intended. Only a disconnected liberal cultist of denial could find fault with my perfect conservation lifestyle that is based on the sound science of biodiversity, sustain yield and responsible, renewable resources hands-on utility. Venison is the rocket fuel of the gods, and I celebrate it daily. It sure makes for some unstoppable fiery and sexy guitar noise.

President Nixon recognized the vital conservation role of hunters, fishermen and trappers when he established National Hunting and Fishing Day in 1972. This Saturday marks the 36th anniversary of National Hunting & Fishing Day, and it is party time at the Nugent camp.

Many Americans don't know that President Nixon even established a National Hunting & Fishing Day or that this Saturday marks its 36th anniversary.

Many people don’t know that outdoorsmen provide roughly 75% of all funds for state departments of natural resources for overall environmental management. Quality air, soil and water come from healthy wildlife habitat, and that has always been our mission statement.

Many don’t know that funds generated through hunting, fishing and trapping licenses, stamps and various other self-imposed fees are also used to protect non-game species, provide areas for bird watchers, and build trails for hikers. You're welcome.

Too many people don’t know that there are more turkey, elk, whitetail deer, geese, black bears and cougars in North America than at any time in our nation’s history. America’s wildlife management system is envied around the world for its overwhelming successes.

Hunters, fishers and trappers demanded this, and we rejoice in our success.You probably don’t know that hunting, fishing and trapping generates more than 30 billion dollars annually to the U.S. economy, 2.5 billion in annual federal tax revenues, 4.2 billion in state tax revenues each year and provides well over 593,000 jobs for Americans. Wildlife has to be counted in the asset column where it belongs, if you have a soul.

You probably don’t know that tens of millions of American families spend hundreds of millions of hours in the great outdoors or that hunting is one of the safest recreational pursuits in America, with far fewer injuries or deaths per capita than skiing, football, cycling, swimming or boating.

You probably don’t know who Pope & Young were, never heard of Fred Bear, and don’t know what the acronyms DU, RMEF, NWTF, FNAWS, NSSF or SCI stands for, even though their conservation accomplishments are Herculean and deserve our respect.

You probably didn't know that hunters provide over 250 million meals each year to the less fortunate by providing a portion of our game to homeless shelters through our non-bureaucratic, non-tax wasting, therefore very efficient Hunters for the Hungry programs. Our pleasure.

You probably never thought about the fact that not one teenage punk gangster has a hunting or fishing license in his pocket. Not one.

Some of you might not know that the 2nd Amendment has zero to do with hunting. The 2nd Amendment was not written by our Founding Fathers so I could go duck hunting. Only a fool would think so.

You don’t know these wonderful things because the outdoor community has not reached beyond the choir to educate anyone about the amazing success story of America’s conservation efforts, activities and programs. Damn shame. I do what I can.

The fault, of course, for such widespread ignorance lies at the feet of rank-and-file hunters and fishermen, our outdoor organizations, and the industries that support and benefit from our conservation lifestyle. With a hunting hating liberal media, it is nearly impossible to find a truthful article on hunting anywhere. Even so, for the most part, our hunting industry couldn't promote a blanket to a naked man in a blizzard. Sadly, Bubba lives, but I'm doing everything I can to beat him back into his cave where he belongs.

In this turbo-electrified, computerized, instant gratification world in which our children are immersed, the thrilling disciplines of hunting and fishing teaches patience, responsibility, humility, persistence and real cause and effect. There is no argument that these are the character traits that mold immature young people into mature, productive, conscientious adults. Look at me.

There are no politics in a deer blind. An omnisciently alert whitetail buck does not care if you are Republican or Democrat, liberal or conservative.

It is good, however, to know that Gov. Palin is a real outdoors woman. She doesn't sling a shotgun over her shoulder once a year to mug for the camera in hopes of attracting votes from hunters and fishermen. She actually hunts caribou and fishes. This tuned in naturalist knows pure organic chow when she sees it. She’s the real deal.

This Saturday is National Hunting & Fishing Day. It is the day that signifies yet another glorious hunting season is upon us. It is perfect, and I am in, gung-ho, heart, mind, body, tooth, fang and claw, spirit and soul. Place your grilled venison orders here with me here. Happy hunting season 2008.

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