American Madness

Intelligent Criticism in the Service of a Better Nation

Presidential candidates and their gun lust

Posted by Joel Friedlander | 1 Comment

John McCain is Elmer FuddIn her column in today’s New York Times, 2/23/08, “A Bad Year to be a Mallard,” Gail Collins quotes several of the current and former candidates regarding their liking for hunting:

“I’m pretty sure there will be duck hunting in heaven, and I can’t wait.”
— Mike Huckabee

“I’ve been a hunter pretty much all my life.”
— Mitt Romney

“I’ve always been a rodent and rabbit hunter. Small varmints if you will.”
— Mitt Romney, amending the record once it was pointed out that he had never had a hunting license.

“Maybe he can get out his small varmint gun and drive those Guatemalans off his yard.”
— John McCain

“My father taught me to shoot 100 years ago.”
— Hillary Clinton

I’m particularly distressed by Governor Huckabee’s statement. This man was a minister. Here he is suggesting that the Lord would allow the murder of animals in the Heaven that he imagines to exist. Its one thing to suggest that hunting is ok if you are going to eat what you shoot, or if you shoot an animal because it is killing your livestock (wolves or foxes for example), but it is quite another to justify it for mere sport. Surely, Governor Huckabee, doesn’t believe that there will be a problem getting a good meal in Heaven. Hmnn, perhaps he had the other place in mind.

Now former Governor Romney has some justification for his alleged hunting. You can eat rabbits, and they aren’t readily available at supermarkets in Massachusetts where he was Governor, but you can’t eat varmints. Why shoot them. Why not wake up that dog that is doing absolutely nothing around the house and send them out to hunt; by themselves. Terriers, for example were specifically bred to hunt varmints. Why not buy them and let them do it. I had an Irish Terrier once and he loved nothing better then going after varmints, even if he almost tore your arm off with the leash when he did so. Let your terrier do varmint hunting and get your ducks, geese, and rabbits at the butchers. That way you’ll know that they died with a minimal amount of pain.

Most of us do eat meat, and we should be concerned with the way the animals we eat are killed. I suggest to you that killing animals with a rifle is hardly a humane way to do it. Speaking anecdotally, when I was 13 years old and my friend Glenn was 12 we went racoon hunting with his 22 (long) rifle. We found a racoon up in a tree and we shot him. After he fell to the ground we stood there and watched as he twisted on the ground in pain and the blood spurted from his wound. That bothered me, but not enough to stop the enterprise. I wasn’t convinced of the true nature of what I had done until Glenn and I tied the remains of the racoon to a board and started to cut his fur off. When we began to skin the animal that was enough to summarily empty my stomach to prepare for my next meal. We took the body to a fellow from South Carolina who worked at Glenn’s father’s place and he took the project over. Neither of us ever partook of the ensuing meal. That was the last time that I fired a rifle at a living thing.

Senator John McCain, who probably killed Vietnamese as the pilot of a fighter plane in Vietnam, seems to understand the real impetus for gun love. With apologies to the Creationists among our readers, way back we descended from the chimpanzees, and they are heartless killers of their own kind. Most of the gun lovers in our country kill because they suffer from bloodlust. They just love holding animals that they have killed up for the camera.

We need to give up the guns but we won’t until we have evolved to a higher state of being, and who knows when that will happen. Oh yes, shame on you Hillary!


One Response to “Presidential candidates and their gun lust”

  1. Amy
    February 27th, 2008 @

    I enjoyed your post, Mr. Friedlander!

    I’m a vegetarian, and I remember the machismo contest in 04 – the hunting photo ops (John Kerry looked much more natural windsurfing than out in the woods wearing orange and toting a gun). It’s so ridiculous. Such a small percentage of people hunt anymore – to pander to their blood lust just seems pathetic to me.

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