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Letters to the Editor

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February 12, 2009

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To the editor:

With regard to the Tonganoxie squirrel hunt story in the Feb. 6 edition of the paper, I must ask: So some people see killing 2,000 or more squirrels in a single day as good, old-fashioned fun? And not just any squirrels either, but the heaviest and healthiest, those best able to survive and keep the genes of the species healthy? So this is how some of us introduce our children to nature and ecology now?

No wonder the natural world is in trouble, let alone the state of humanity. Compassion begets compassion, and cruelty grows as you feed it. Yes, cruelty. It is cruel to harm something weaker than yourself simply because you can. It is cruel to kill something simply for your own pleasure.

There are those of us sickened by this “hunt” because of how it affects the animals alone. We feel that their lives and place on the planet are important and should be respected, but I realize some people only care about human life and are not troubled by this unnecessary slaughter. To them I just say, remember that contempt for the life of a vulnerable animal can quite easily lead to contempt for the welfare of weaker humans.

As Gandhi said, “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.” The people who participated in this bit of cruelty in Tonganoxie on Saturday made us all poorer in spirit.

Adonia David,
Lawrence

Comments

farva 5 years, 2 months ago

I guarantee 2000 squirrels were not shot. I thought I read that 138 teams entered @ people per team=276 people. Statewide law limits each hunter to 5 squirrels/day. 276x5=1380. For anyone who has ever hunted squirrels, if you can shoot 2-3 per day you're doing good. Wild squirrels are not tame like city bird-feeder squirrels. So 276 people times an average of 2.5 squirrels/hunter equals 690. That is 690 squirrels harvested over a huge region...anywhere is KS and MO was legal for this event. Regardless if they were signed up or not, they probably would have been out hunting on their own. If anyone has ever spent time in the woods, stopped and remained quiet, you'd see how many squirrels are around. They just hide as soon as they hear anything move! There's probably close to 1,000 animals PER SQUARE MILE (pure estimate) in many areas in NE KS. PLUS squirrels are prolific breeders with multiple breedings/year. They aren't in threat!

The author needs to take a basic biology class. "And not just any squirrels either, but the heaviest and healthiest, those best able to survive and keep the genes of the species healthy?" This is the exact OPPOSITE of everything science has ever proved!

Nothing more annoying than liberal junkies making an uproar over something they aren't even educated over!

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GoPhuckYerMother 5 years, 2 months ago

madmike still suxcox and eats sh!t.

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GoPhuckYerMother 5 years, 2 months ago

I say BAN all tax free bible beating death cult chuches. let em rot

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bndairdundat 5 years, 2 months ago

atdavid - appreciate your views. As you don't seem to want to attack other peoples choices then you shouldn't have to defend yours. As a hunter, I would not participate in a hunt just to see who could shoot the most, the biggest, the best. Like you, I value all living creatures, I have been known to let wasps crawl on my finger while I release them out the door. When hunting I will not take a shot if I don't think I can make a fast, humane kill. Attaching human emotions and values to the conditions of animals living in the wild does not work for me. Ever seen how animals kill? Nothing "humane" about the way a coyote kills a newborn calf before it is completely born, or a snake crushing a chicken in the barn. There's room for everybody to make their own choices, you've made yours, I've made mine. Stand tall for what you value, let others do the same.

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bluecollar2 5 years, 2 months ago

Oh, and concidering some of the minds I'm dealing with, I guess I need to correct my last statement.

Peace to mankind, eat the 4 legged critters, and the 2 legged fowl!

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bluecollar2 5 years, 2 months ago

I can't believe this is even a discussion.

Are you people picturing little rodents sleeping on the branches? Taking a nap during the "big kill"? I don't know about the squirrels in your trees, but the ones in mine are in constant motion! That is why we call HYPER PEOPLE --SQUIRRELS!!!!

There are thousands more, in a 20 mile area, where those 2000 came from. Is it sick and warped that the children are taught to do such a thing? Not at all. These kids will be the ones some of you will turn to if that one book is true. You know the one, it says something to the effect of a days wages for a loaf of bread. Seems that this world is heading in that direction at a high rate of speed!

Not to mention, if you can shoot something that small, moving that speed through the trees, you just might be able to kill the 200 pound thug that just broke into your grandma's house as you are visiting her.

Besides, your just jealous that you'll never know how good a tree rat taste in the ol' pressure cooker. Peace to mankind, eat the animal!

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atdavid 5 years, 2 months ago

I wrote the letter - I wasn't planning on posting here as I didn't want to start a back and forth or anything, so I promise I won't post again here - but there's one thing I wanted to clear up just because it was such a common misconception about me and seemed to inform a lot of posts - I am actually a vegetarian, bordering on vegan. I try very hard not to wear animal products and am working on cutting dairy out of my diet - I do actually hate the meat aisle of the store - yes, farm animals have it bad bad. I go out of my way not to kill creatures that invade my home - I try very hard to catch them and release them - yes, even the flies. And I'd never kill a mouse or rat - I have pet rats actually and they're wonderful little things. I have many many faults, but in this one instance I'm not quite the hypocrite people assumed I am - although I'm far from perfect too.

But even if this were not the case and I was a total hypocrite, someone - I think it was Andrew Livey? - wrote once about this sort of thing that it is better to be compassionate sometimes than never. I think that's true - if we do the best we can with our knowledge and resources, it grows. No need to refuse to try to live more compassionately just because you aren't doing it perfectly.

Anyway - thanks for the patience of reading my defense of that one aspect of myself. I appreciate it.

I wish you all the best.

A.D.

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yankeelady 5 years, 2 months ago

I don't have anything against hunting, I just don't think this qualifies. And I really have a problem with the earlier statement about being out with the kids and enjoying nature. Why kill it to enjoy it? Even if it is "just squirrels."

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bndairdundat 5 years, 2 months ago

1029 should probably be put under 24 hour watch. He really has some pretty sick thoughts regarding children.

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madmike 5 years, 2 months ago

1029 merely shows his @ssholishness once again.

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Benjamin Roberts 5 years, 2 months ago

1029 (Anonymous) says… "I'm sure at least a couple of those squirrel huntin' young'ins will grow up to rape and/or mutilate animals in addition to whatever other psychological disorders they develop..."

That's real class...especially coming from the guy who on the previous thread about this subject made the following comment about 8 and 10 year old boys: ““Mini Nuts” is a great team name for people hunting squirrels. It's a lot more clever than “small balls”.”

As stated on the previous thread, "Sick, just plain sick." You have very evil thoughts about children.

Previous thread: http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2009/feb/08/hunters-scramble-catch-squirrels/#c809431

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1029 5 years, 2 months ago

I'm sure at least a couple of those squirrel huntin' young'ins will grow up to rape and/or mutilate animals in addition to whatever other psychological disorders they develop because their backwards family encouraged squirrel huntin' as a fun old family tradition.

I don't know what's worse: if the young hunter just throws his sack of squirrels out with the garbage or if his momma turns them into stew and school clothes. On one hand, at least they ate the animals, which is what hunting is supposed to be about. On the other hand, the already-present trashiness of the family sinks to a new low because they just had squirrel stew for dinner. Oh, well, poor kids....

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Multidisciplinary 5 years, 2 months ago

Too darned bad the LTE didn't mention Nazis, as the group would have loved that one.

The black squirrel that lives behind me...I notice that when I get to my door, he (lol props to Doug_Mild) he's always running back to his tree. In straight alignment to my door. Zoom. He's done it enough now, that I get the feeling he's been looking in my back door window, sees me coming, and takes off.

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Benjamin Roberts 5 years, 2 months ago

gogoplata (Anonymous) says… "Somebody kill this discussion please."

The LTE says... "It is cruel to kill something simply for your own pleasure."

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DouglasCountySucks 5 years, 2 months ago

I see the post angle has struck again and took my 1st post off. LJW if you dont like the truth, let us know. Nothing was bad or rude, just facts about deer populations and car deer accidents, They do kill people.Hunting is good in 2 ways. 1 keeps populations in check. 2 It is a sport that the family can do and teach respect and pride and also about nature and how to preserve it.This is wierd, not the post shows back up, WTF is wrong with this site ?

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WhiteDog 5 years, 2 months ago

I've really never understood the arguments that it's good family fun to hunt, and that those who oppose the hunt are hypocrites if they eat meat or use other animal products.

Does this mean that you all take your kids to the slaughterhouse on the weekends for a fun family outing?

It amazes me just how steeped in violence some are that they can't see how over-the-top this is. This isn't teaching your kid how to hunt for meat, this is animal slaughter for fun. Very, very different things.

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notajayhawk 5 years, 2 months ago

Squirrels are rodents, and from what I understand overpopulated in the area where this took place. Would you rather they starved to death? And do you get upset when a mouse or rat dies in a trap in your attic?

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The_Original_Bob 5 years, 2 months ago

Gogo -

Nice attempt to invoke Godwin's Law, but I think you need to incorporate Hitler/Nazi a little better. Such as...

"Killing squirrels is something the Nazis did because Hitler liked to use their rib bones as tooth pics."

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gogoplata 5 years, 2 months ago

Somebody kill this discussion please. I think we can all agree that would be the humande thing to do.

HITLER HITLER HITLER HITLER HITLER

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Pywacket 5 years, 2 months ago

Hoots~ If you're not seeing as many squirrels, it may just be due to a shift in food supply that has caused them to move on from your neighborhood (or wherever you're making your observations). They are thick on my property, as well as at many other areas I observe, such as Clinton State Park, KU's vast campus, and several other lake and park areas around here. We have mature oak and walnut on our property, which probably draws them, and they are a destructive nuisance to anyone who tries to feed birds. I don't harm the squirrels, but I do get sick of them eating/spilling all the food I put out for the birds, gnawing on and ruining the feeders, etc. I believe the population is very robust.

As for your candy bar analogy... I don't think it's a very good analogy, but okay-- I guess it would be all right to eat 50 candy bars in a sitting if you only did that once a year and there were so many candy bars that the loss of 50 at once would not cause them to go extinct!

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Hoots 5 years, 2 months ago

It's not hard to notice something missing. If I haven't seen some of my friends in weeks I know it. It's called the power of observation. Taking 2000 squirrels at one time seems excessive. Do you sit down and eat 50 candy bars all in one sitting? I don't have a problem with hunting. I realize it is needed to keep disease at bay and to keep balance in some animal populations. I like a good piece of Deer now and then.

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Pywacket 5 years, 2 months ago

Elmer and Gootsie~ You make a gweat team!

I hope Adonia et al., when they're not writing letters denouncing squirrel hunting, spend the rest of their time crying over the carcasses and blood-drained "parts" of chickens, steers, hogs, and turkeys at the local grocery stores.

Surely those creatures deserve this gnashing of teeth and rending of garments even more than their wild counterparts, since they don't have a chance at a normal life or at surviving by their wits (which, come to think of it, have been selectively bred out of them).

I dare say the wild squirrels have (a) a much higher-quality life and (b) a quicker, more painless death than any commercially raised meat animals.

They're tasty, too.

While nothing could ever persuade me to turn vegetarian, I at least respect their stance for being consistent. I will never understand the POV of those who are happy to eat meat as long as others do their slaughtering for them, then turn around and denounce hunting as "cruel" and even damaging to the species.

Contrary to Adonia's imagined scenario, it is quite unlikely that those individuals fittest (by way of intelligence or other edge) for survival wound up being shot at this hunt.

So they weighed the ones that they did shoot? That does not suggest (much less prove) that there were not bigger, more genetically successful individuals that were nimble or cautious enough to stay out of harm's way.

Unless you can live-trap and compare a control group of "the ones that got away," Adonia's assertion that those shot were the "heaviest and healthiest, those best able to survive and keep the genes of the species healthy" is utter speculation on her part and, therefore, scientifically worthless rubbish.

Also, this is a once-a-year event--not a situation where they're going to keep hammering away until the population is decimated. I don't personally get the whole competition thing, but if the participants do, I'm not going to lose sleep over that angle. We are overrun with squirrels. There is not enough food for all of them, since they have very few surviving predators. Does Adonia lie awake thinking of those that will starve during the winter months?

If you want to crusade about cruelty and lack of compassion, go reform the captive-raised meat production industry. Hunting wild animals is a noble pursuit in comparison to what goes on there.

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Esq2eB 5 years, 2 months ago

Do you spend a great deal of time sitting around looking for and counting squirrels? If so, Wal-Mart is hiring. You sound like just the type they are looking for!

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Hoots 5 years, 2 months ago

I don't see nearly as many squirrel's as I did as a kid. I have to wonder why we are killing so many when fewer are around. I'm not against hunting but this event troubled me.

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Gootsie 5 years, 2 months ago

I'm widin' in your caw, you tuwn on the wadio You're puwwin' me cwose, I just say no I say I don't wike it, but you know I'm a wiar 'Cause when we kiss, ooh, fiwa

Happy Valentine's Day Elmer!

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Elmer_Fudd 5 years, 2 months ago

Adonia Dawling,

Does this mean you won't be joining me fo a womantic meal of woast squiwwel with cawwots, followed by wed wosey wine on squiwwel skin wugs by the fiah?

I will be all alone this Valentine's. You've made me a vewy vewy sad man. Thank heavens I've got intewnet pown.

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The_Original_Bob 5 years, 2 months ago

"And not just any squirrels either, but the heaviest and healthiest, those best able to survive and keep the genes of the species healthy? "

Oh, brother.

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disgustedagain 5 years, 2 months ago

"Millions dying in Africa because misguided 'environmentalists' banned DDT. And you people are worried about a few squirrels? Sheesh. Get a life."

what, we are only supposed to concern ourselves with other countries, "big" moral issues and humans? seems like parents ought to be teaching respect for life in any form, regardless of location (why do you people always reference africa or asia as monolithic?) or species (only humans are important I guess?).

what is it with squirrels? so many people treat them like cockroaches. i guess familiarity and quantity breeds contempt. i find hunting squirrels for fun thoroughly disgusting. the behavior of the human species is often pretty disgusting.

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Bullwinkle 5 years, 2 months ago

the squirrel scramble is a fun activity for kids who are old enough to shoot a .22, but we need something for the littler ones. how about a wingless fly competition for preschoolers? it could be scheduled during the summer to cut down on the fly population. the boys and girls who pull the most wings off flies win. those little bugs are so funny when they have to walk. it would be great!

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Kyle Reed 5 years, 2 months ago

Hey look, is that a dead horse? Quick! Grab my stick!

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XD40 5 years, 2 months ago

Millions dying in Africa because misguided 'environmentalists' banned DDT. And you people are worried about a few squirrels? Sheesh. Get a life.

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Flap Doodle 5 years, 2 months ago

I saw the headline & thought this was about Pelosi & Reid. Never mind.

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grammaddy 5 years, 2 months ago

I understand the use of guns in controlling animal populations. Understand it, but don't necessarily agree with it. I just don't understand how hunting is a sport. To me it's like a Super Bowl game where one team has all the protective gear AND the ball while the other team is just there. There's nothing sporting about it. Let's level the playing field a little. No more hunting licenses issued for guns, only bows and arrows. It's not really a sport when you sit in a tree all day waiting for some poor defenseless animal to walk into your sight. This world belongs to all God's creatures and we would be well served by making adjustments for them instead of forcing them to adjust to ours.

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crow 5 years, 2 months ago

Has anyone heard of vegetarians or vegans here? Some people actually don't use animal products - or try very hard not to.

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salad 5 years, 2 months ago

A group hunt for sport is pretty inconsistent with "real" hunting. It's a pointless exercise in barbarism, much like english fox hunting and the rattle snake roundup. Real hunters are all in favor of protecting the environment, love the outdoors, kill only what they need, and use what they kill. The best hunters don't need a gun either: bow, spear, knife, or bare hands. Acme of skill.

"The more humans we save the beter the planet and world as a whole is." Clearly this is as flawed as logic comes. Sorry pal, go sell your "crazy" some place else, we're all stocked up here.

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75x55 5 years, 2 months ago

Didn't we already have this discussion? What, not getting enough ad hits?

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Tom Shewmon 5 years, 2 months ago

As Gandhi said, “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”

How much more looney can you get? We all know Hindus worship the cow, hence the term "sacred cow".

Adonia, do you wear leather shoes, belt? Do you or have you had a leather purse? Do you eat chocolate? Pudding? Jell-O? Feed your pet, pet food? Use glue? Shampoo? A comb or brush? Film? And the list goes on and on and on.

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Jason Bailey 5 years, 2 months ago

Adonia: Have you ever swatted a fly buzzing around your home? How about sprayed a nest of wasps that have setup shop next to your garage door? Ever set traps for mice that are rummaging around in your pantry?

If you're going to apply this "holier than thou" logic to some hunters all in the name of respecting animals and their place in the world, you have to apply it to yourself across the board. Something tells me there's a hypocrite writing this LTE.

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crow 5 years, 2 months ago

To DGCountyScks - I think something to consider on this letter -necessary hunts for food or population control are one thing. The squirrel hunt as presented in the paper sounded more like it was for fun - a good way to hang out with the kids and have them enjoy nature. One thought for you - most people have big enough hearts they can care for animals and people. I think that is what the Ghandi quote means - if people care for the animals, they care for the people. Most people who get on animal lovers are doing nothing to help. Most people who help animals help people too that I've known. Are you helping anyone or anything right now yourself?

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storm 5 years, 2 months ago

Hunting dogs can type. Down, boy, down.

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DouglasCountySucks 5 years, 2 months ago

People like you are what is wrong with the whole planet.You seem to have the answer to it all , but yet know very little of what you talk about. Hunting is a great family outing. Hunting keeps the population of certain animals at a leval that the best survive to reproduce and keep the best blood lines going.Just take one year of no deer hunting and you would have 10,000 more deer in Douglas county alone. The fawns would calculate to about 8,000 more deer, to take the total deer population to around 65,000.00 in douglas county. Now you try to drive whithin 20 miles of this area and survive a car deer crash.Think about that next time you are driving down the road and a deer comes through your windshield and kills you , your wife and kids. Have an awesome drive .Enjoy your new antlers on your dash. Question, You have a plan to fix the world. I know some folks that live in eastern Douglas County, They are down on their luck and need to survive to keep the human race going on. Can you spot them $10,000.00 to pay the bills for a while ? Can you also donate to the peace officers fund to help fight crime, so no humans have to die ? This will ensure that every human bloodline goes on and more humans live .The more humans we save the beter the planet and world as a whole is.Save a horse, ride a cowboy..

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