Monday, February 13, 2006

Vice President Declares Open Season on Lawyers, Politicians

It's the latest exciting news to emerge from Washington: Vice President Dick Cheney has finally decided to ease federal restrictions on big game hunting.

And many are jumping for joy, because popular consensus seems to say that such a measure is long overdue.

Of course, many liberals have vociferously protested this move and have stepped up their attacks on sport hunting. They point to the fact that the Vice President's recent trophy wasn't humanely killed with a clean shot to the head, but was instead left maimed and bleeding-- supposedly an act of "brutality". They whine repeatedly that hunting big game is unnecessary, that it is wasteful, and that it is cruel.

But they forget that hunting has another purpose other than providing us with protein: keeping numbers in check by culling a population that could otherwise overrun and degrade the natural environment. In addition, responsible hunting practices help prevent the spread of diseases such as rabies, a devastating pathogen that is only too common on both sides of the political spectrum-- and one that condemns victims to dementia and a slow, painful death.

So, for those who prefer to take a more level-headed view of the matter, the recent relaxing of regulations banning such hunts is a step forward in the right direction-- and many are anxious to take part. Long lines for the limited permits have been rumored at some of the locations that offer recreational hunting and fishing licenses throughout several states: sporting goods stores, gun shops, department stores, discount stores, bait and tackle shops-- even grocery stores.

One eager sportsman, when interviewed, stated "They're the most dangerous game out there! No other predator can rival the lawyer's ruthlessness, the politician's cunning and speed. I've been wanting to bag one for years!"

The state's Fish and Wildlife spokesman agreed. "The sheer skill and reflexes required to bring one of these down is amazing-- it makes bear hunting look like child's play", he added. "Of course, some purists prefer hunting game in the natural environment: corporate boardrooms, fundraising dinners, seedy motels.... but most will agree that nothing beats tracking and harvesting one of these in the woods."

When asked about his hunting trip, the Vice President laughed ruefully. "I'll tell you: that was no easy shot. He stepped out of the brush along a creek bottom and stood at the edge of a field, while I was ensconced in a tree stand in the upper limbs of a tall burr oak about 25 feet above a well used campaign trail." Displaying his prized shotgun for reporters, he added: "And unless you've hunted one of these yourself, you probably can't imagine what a magnificent sight they make-- poised gracefully in the morning mist, brief case in hand... momentarily leaping for a phone call.... truly one of Nature's best displays."

With lines of eager applicants, each requesting a highly prized and limited permit, the question arises: should the allowable span of time be extended? Neither lawyers nor politicians are on the endangered species list, and most hunters want to book their hunt during the peak period, which is the campaign season. This is usually purported to be the most potentially active and productive period. However, it can be the most frustrating and exasperating time of year as well-- for it is during this period that the quarry becomes unpredictable and completely irrational.

So, predicting travel patterns at a given time or setting up an ambush along previously established paths can mean that the hunt depends entirely on luck rather than knowledge, skill and experience. But that doesn't deter the large numbers of would-be participants. With the Vice President taking the lead, the loosening of restrictions will encourage many to follow suit--perhaps revitalizing one of the most traditional pastimes of this great country.


Anonymous Professor Twain said...

Another great blog.

I hope that you saw Maureen Dowd's column on this matter--priceless. Actually, there is a price--I had to join TimesSelect to get to read it online (see my recent blog about "Paying For It").

4:31 AM  
Blogger L said...

My Dear Professor: thank you :) I just read her column today (I've been a bit behind on things lately)...

9:06 PM  

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