Monday, December 6, 2010

Negative Hunter Representation

   We all know that hunters generally get a bad rap for a number of things.  Like clockwork every season, hunters of all kinds come out of the woodwork and do stupid things that make news reporters savor at the delightful smell of hunting gone array.  I'm used to it, a little annoyed by it, but most of all, I've learned ways to prevent any dumb accident from occurring while a gun or bow is in my hand.  It only takes one person to give our community of hunters, fishers and outdoorsmen a bad name.

    I'm not one to point fingers or name names but in this case, I have to.

    DU's brother sent me the link below:


     Being the political savvy, complete non-hunter DU's brother is, he wanted to know what our opinion of the whole thing was. I appreciated that he wanted more information to fully understand what the artlce was talking about.

   PLEASE NOTE:   I'm not political nor do I pretend to be. Hence, I would feel the way I feel about this video no matter who was featured in it. 
                 Also, the kind of rifle she shot was pure estimation on the part of DU. 
                        Finally, I'm not an expert in hunting but I have been around guns and been hunting long enough to know a little about this passion of mine.

   I warn you, this article may infuriate you.  The comments featured at the end of the article may cause you to WANT to get your gun and shoot something but, dear reader, refrain.  Instead, filter your anger into writing and let the blogging world know what you think of this absolute catastrophe.

  For those of you who wondered how I responded to DU's brother's inquiry, here is what I wrote,

OH.MY.GOD. Where do I even start?

Well, I'm not an expert but I did notice some things that were a little off-putting about all this.

First off, I can't really understand people being upset that she went hunting if she's a "millionaire". There are a lot of people on outdoor TV shows that make a TON of money hunting and no one faults them for taking another trophy caribou. So, I can't fault her for hunting... or doing whatever it is that she's doing in that video.

But I have some problems.
1. Why can't she load her own gun? My guessing is she has no idea how to do it or doesn't want to break her nails in the process. Her dad doing it for her while standing and whispering really loudly is another problem. I think the first shot might have made the caribou deaf and made it so they could carry on the way they did.
2. Why did she ask if a rifle kicks? Rifles kick. You get bruises. I've hunted seriously for a couple years now and I know that. Hence a "lifelong" hunter should know that and show off the bruises given by such firearms. Also, bringing a vermin gun on a caribou hunt? That is a joke. No wonder it took 6 shots to kill the thing.
3. I have a problem with the shots she took. I'm not all about shooting while the animal is facing you. If you shoot and it runs forward, she could have been trampled (oh no!). Also, that is just a bad shot. Waiting till he's broadside (his entire side facing you) is the best and can kill quickly. This is just a personal thing, however.  

4. GET YOUR FINGER OFF OF THE TRIGGER, PALIN. You never want to have your finger on the trigger of ANY gun unless you are about to shoot.  I learned that in a New York State hunter safety course along with dozens of 8 year-old kids, so she should probably be aware.
5. Her clothing was a little off. First thing, too much skin and not enough camo for ground hunting. We sit in tree stands with everything covered just in case. Also, I just googled Caribou hunting regulations in Alaska and from what I've found, a hunter is required to wear at least 400 square inches of blaze orange during the hunt. If you're on private land, this is may be different but if she's been hunting all her life, she should know that blaze orange saves lives and should be worn (especially on TV if she's attempting to set a good example).
6. Something seems really fishy about her having to take cues from her Dad if she's been hunting all her life about when to shoot. I killed my first deer, FIRST with no cues from anyone. Also, it was weird that he had to tell her to confirm it was dead. Any wild thing with some sort of implement of destruction on its head should be checked for visible signs of life. 

7.  Finally, the article's ending is filled with ridiculous, non-informed perspectives. One supporter in the article said that Palin's dad took a tumble and the scope could have been knocked off.  If you fall over your gun, it falls, etc- don't use it!!! If the scope was off, it could have shot in another direction and wounded someone or the caribou.Wounding the caribou could have been bad simply because a rouge shot could have wounded the caribou just enough to run away and die in some remote part of the woods.  (The result is wasted meat- the "millionaire" objectors would have a field day with this) It would have been best to take the gun, go back to camp and sight it in rather than attempt to continue on with the hunt. Thinking would cause a hunter to pause but obviously, Palin is such a good hunter that she figured mulling anything over would be time wasted.

All in all, its really sad that this is the kind of representation the hunting community gets from one of its so-called supporters and participants.

However, the only redeeming quality for the entire thing is the arguments for Palin at the end of the article. I'm 99.9% sure that no one from the production crew would have messed with a gun to make her look bad. She was doing a fantastically tragic job of it on her own without the assistance of the TV crew.  If she was a "real" hunter, her gun would be with her at all times and she would have noticed someone messing with her scope.

Oh the beauty of political leaders showing their lives on TV. Such a waste of God-given space. 


  And if you're wondering what DU thought, here is how he responded:

   I thought it was a bunch of crap. I actually watched the episode last night to see what this sweet sweet new reality show would be like. Needless to say, if I am searching for a good laugh, I will tune in, otherwise, TLC can continue to air crap and I will continue to not watch. 
  I could not believe how unsafe they were during this entire hunt. One thing that really stuck out to me was that she was handed loaded guns, with safety off, only to immediately put her finger on the trigger. My dad would have killed me if he ever saw me do something like this, no matter how old I was. To me, this really seemed like a way to show the public that Palin was a hunter and she could "provide" for her family in the same ways many other Alaskan residents do. It was simply a hunting trip to bag some PR for a complete idiot loser who represents the hunting community in a horrible way. If she was the face of hunting, I would build model airplanes. I want nothing to do with anything she does and she should have her hunting license taken away for ever for being an idiot on national television with rifle in hand.
Onto topic #2.
Palin is an idiot because...
No orange! If you have a gun in hand while hunting, you need orange on you. It's for your own safety not some fashion statement. She's wearing $400 worth of brand new camo that has never left her closet sans a probable photoshoot, but can't wear one piece of orange? Its not like they were not wearing orange in order to not be seen by the animal, her dad and friend were wearing blue jeans and carrying camping backpacks, not trying too hard to stay hidden are you?!
All in all, Palin is as much of an idiot as I thought she was going to be on this show and can officially be lumped into the "I'm a rich, political, loser "outdoorsman"" category along with (I chop wood on my ranch and drill for oil) George Bush, and (I shoot my friends in the face) Dick Cheney. 



   Let it fly, readers- what to do you think?



Update: CNN featured this blog post (for an iota of a second but still, I'm excited) in a segment about Palin's PR hunt.  

8 comments:

Albert Quackenbush said...

This post is SPOT ON! (You'll see a post over on my blog this week, too). I sat down with my wife to watch this last night (I would normally being checking out the hunting forums). I figured it was going to show her hunting and I'd get my wife interested in the sport. Boy was I wrong! All throughout the show I was angered by how unsafe everyone was being. The handling of weapons, her dad falling, I could go on. Aw hell, I am going to!

Right off the bat her dad says he's going to give her the varmint gun because it has less kick. Are you f-ing kidding me? That's like saying I am going to try to take out a deer with a BB gun. Stupid, just plain stupid.

Then her dad falls while using the gun as a walking stick. barrel up towards the sky and he falls forward. They don't bother checking to see if there is any gun damage either. As they go on their first outing, Sarah somehow forgets her rubber boots (that miraculously appear on the second outing). She decides to wade through the ice-cold water in her hiking boots and says the heck with it and gets soaked. Brilliant when you are 14 miles from basecamp and 120 miles from a doctor.

Oh the shooting! Who in their right mind hands a weapon over with the safety off? Can't load your own gun, but you've been hunting with your dad your entire life? I call bullshit. If you had been hunting you know how to load a rifle, know when to shoot and take your time with it. the finger on the trigger had me up off the couch yelling at the screen. Even my wife (who can shoot a mean pistol) knew this was wrong on so many levels. The head on shot pissed me right off. She had to shoot the only animal out there because it seemed like she was just trying to win a bet. She's really showing how to hunt badly and worse off - how unsafe hunting is done. Appalling!

I did not know about the orange there, so I won't comment on that.

All in all, I was more than disappointed, I was angry for the entire airing of the show the way it was done. Unsafe, unethical and put out there just for rating. Garbage.

Ok, I am done venting... until i post. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this!

Al

Bob Mc said...

Just 1 word. Pathetic!

Lynne said...

Apparently it hasn't become common knowledge "outside" yet, but in Alaska pretty much everyone knows that Sarah does not have...and never has had...a hunting license. Are you surprised? I didn't think so.

Albert A Rasch said...

HLYH,

You never cease to enlighten and entertain!

I have recently started to read heavily into the French and Indian War, and the prelude to the American Revolution. I am astounded by my ignorance on the subject. If we, as Americans, were made to learn our own history, we would not be in the straights we are in. The Founding Fathers knew something, and that something we have all forgoten and in many cases, (The Politicians) have NEVER learned.

Sarah Palin, as cute and ahhh, cute as she is, is a product of an intellectually bankrupt American education system, and a Beltway/Madison Avenue political machine that churns out political celebrities for the media.

The more I read, the more disgusted I am with the business as usual of today's democracy.

Sam Adams, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson all of them would be aghast at what we have become. They never intended for the political machines to take over and control the people.

Everything else so far posted, is irrefutable and I can't add to it.

Regards,
Albert
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
The Range Reviews: Remington R-25 Multi-Caliber Rifle

Nin said...

As the mother of a soldier who handles guns on a daily basis and an avid outdoorswoman, I can honestly say that she knows very little about guns. The way she "handles" them is pathetic. What disgusts me the most is her pathetic attempt to try and seal some credibility and instead has shown how reckless she is! Is it great to be able to hunt? YES! But it is very irresponsible to go "hunting" in the manner that she did. If wearing her designer cammo and full make-up (REAL HUNTERS DON"T WEAR FULL MAKEUP BECAUSE YOU DON"T WANT TO GIVE AWAY YOUR PRESENCE!) without any thought to the color orange displays her incredible vanity. This was an epic fail, in my opinion. Great blog by the by ;-)

Hunt Like You're Hungry said...

All-

First of all, thank you for stopping by!

Secondly, I'm glad I'm not the only one who saw this whole thing for what it really was: A gigantic PR charade that has single-handedly continued to perpetuate negative stereotypes of hunters.


Happy Hunting!

HLYH

Chris said...

I wrote a post on this a while back and to be honest, completely missed most of your points. Didn't see the trigger thing. I must have been intoxicated. However, what angered me the most wasn't brought up in you post or by any of the comments. She shot at the caribou when it was completely skylined. The missed shots probably sent bullets (.243) for at least a mile into the unknown. Even in the bush of Alaska, that's a no-no

Hunt Like You're Hungry said...

Chris- right you are sir! In one of the websites this article was featured in, a reader asked if the shot was a good shot or not. I responded that the first thing one learns as a hunter, besides treating every gun like it is loaded, is to know what is beyond your target. Palin had no knowledge of what was behind her target; hence, as you put it, the shot is a BIG no-no. Having included it on the website I completely forgot about adding it here so I thank you for bringing it to my attention! Also, thank you for stopping by!

HLYH