To the editor:
As a person fairly new to hunting, I was interested to hear that Missouri may soon have a new state game bird. However, my interest quickly turned to shock as I read Jonathan Kealing's article in the Jan. 18 Lawrence Journal-World in which he reports that a Missouri senator is proposing that the Jayhawk be named that game bird. Given the history and true meaning of "Jayhawk," what Sen. Dan Clemens proposes is essentially a call for murder.
To be sure, the senator must know the historical significance of the Jayhawk and a little skirmish called the Civil War that gave rise to this band of brothers that crusaded against the dark ideology of slavery espoused by the state of Missouri. These crusaders were called Jayhawkers.
The Jayhawk is a mythical combination of the sparrow hawk and the blue jay, and the term served as a moniker not for a bird, but for a group of people. To this day, the Jayhawk is not a winged creature that soars through the air, but rather a group of people who strive to make the world a better place. Do the senator and the state of Missouri really mean to say that they should be shot?
Kansas City, Kan.