Michigan to Lower Hunting Age

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Josh, Jun 22, 2006.

  1. Josh macrumors 68000

    Josh

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    #1
    Link: http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/...hunter,1,3963724.story?coll=chi-newsap_mi-hed
    (kind of old, but I just heard about it recently)

    To increase the number of hunters in Michigan, senate has approved a bill that would lower the minimum age of hunters.

    The large game limit would be lowered to 12 from 14, and small game to 10 from 12.

    *sigh*

    That's exactly what we need. Surely if a lack of hunters is the problem, a whole bunch of rifle-toting 10-12-year olds is the answer :rolleyes:
     
  2. Ugg macrumors 68000

    Ugg

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    #2
    That just boggles the mind. Why do they need a higher percentage of the population out there hunting? And why are they allowing 12 year olds to shoot big game? If you've ever shot even a 30-30, you'll know the recoil is pretty harsh, I'll bet there are a number of injuries just from recoil much less from some 12 year old who is trigger happy. Can't legally have sex, drink or vote but they seem to think 12 year olds should be given the responsibility of handling a high-powered rifle. What are they thinking?
     
  3. Josh thread starter macrumors 68000

    Josh

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    #3
    I don't believe they are. As you said, this is boggling.

    I could understand the "more hunters needed" issue if there were over-population problems with some species, but I don't think more children hunting is the answer.

    Lower the cost on the lisence, advertise it more, something.

    Looking at the stats, it is even more concerning. Though the number of incidents has decreased lately, the majority of accidents are due to "Hunter Judgement" and "Skill and Aptitude" related reasons.

    Surely judgement, skill, and aptitude are related to age (which is related to experience)?

    http://www.michigan.gov/documents/HUNTING_INCIDENT_2003-2005_161967_7.pdf
     
  4. neocell macrumors 65816

    neocell

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    #4
    Wow. Completely unbelievable. Are sure this isn't a late April 1st? WTF
     
  5. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    #5
    12 is less of a problem for me than 10. I learned to shoot and hunt when I was 12, and I feel like that is a decent age to teach someone not only gun respect, but animal respect as well.

    10?

    Eff that...and why?
     
  6. Josh thread starter macrumors 68000

    Josh

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    #6
    Same here. A 12-year old hunting rabits, pheasants, and other small game with a shotgun does not bother me a bit, since that is when I started as well.

    But a 10 year old with the same shotgun is different.

    And a 12 year old with a rifle hunting big game (in the upper peninsula)? That's scary.
     
  7. neocell macrumors 65816

    neocell

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  8. Backtothemac macrumors 601

    Backtothemac

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    #8
    I will give you an example of why we need more hunters.
    In Alabama in 1988, the deer population was so overpopulated that the animals were becoming diseased, and very malnurished. The problem is that in turn, other species also developed the same proplems. The herd in Alabama was overpopulated by nearly 5 million deer.

    We have to remember that we all used to hunt for our food, and now, thanks to the beef industry and others, we don't hunt anymore in numbers high enough to sustain healthy populations of deer, squirel, rabbits, hogs, turkeys, etc.

    We have to hunt animals, so that they don't overpopulate and eventually kill themselves. That is very inhumane to allow that to happen.

    I have been hunting since the age of 6, so I have a different view of hunting. Personally, I think we need more hunters that are responsible for the benifit of the herds themselves.
     
  9. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #9
    I wonder if someone big shot in MI has a bunch of 10yr old nieces & nephews that he wants to go hunting with or something. Maybe I'm missing something but are there really that many 10yr olds in MI that can't wait 2 more years?

    Don't forget the *evil* animals, like wolves, that used to help keep the deer population in balance before they were nearly hunted to extinction for lack of being cute and cuddly.


    Lethal
     
  10. Backtothemac macrumors 601

    Backtothemac

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    #10
    Oh, you are right about that. There have been major mistakes in the history of hunting in this country. But, wolves don't hunt deer. They can't, they are not fast enough, but yes, you are right there have been major mistakes over the years.
     
  11. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #11
    You ain't kidding...
    [​IMG]

    ;)
     
  12. Ugg macrumors 68000

    Ugg

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    #12
    You're correct in that some areas in the US are overpopulated with deer but you're wrong when it comes to why. Animal populations will find equilibrium as long as predator species are healthy. Since the US has eliminated predators in many areas, prolific breeders like deer have increased their numbers.

    One of the greatest reasons for their increase is suburbia. Unfortunately, few homeowners are going to allow hunting in their backyards. In natural areas, like state and national parks, there is much less of a problem when it comes to overpopulation. So the need to hunt excuse is rarely satisfactory in and of itself.

    The red squirrel is endangered in many areas due to the imported grey squirrel which is more aggressive. Turkey populations rarely get out of hand. Hogs can be dangerous but tend to shun humans so it's not that big of a problem in most areas. Rabbits are a major problem in many areas but once again, it's mostly suburbia where they get out of hand.

    I've no problem with people who hunt for meat, but I imagine few 12 year olds are out blasting away simply to put food on the table.

    Since much of Michigan is rural and wild, I doubt that there's a huge need to thin the population. Of greater concern, is the form of BSE that affects deer but there's little that can be done about that and I would be very wary of eating any meat from deer in that area.

    Hunting can help manage some animal populations but to make hunters out as some sort of benefactor to wildlife is sort of silly, don't you think?
     
  13. Josh thread starter macrumors 68000

    Josh

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    #13
    Reading the article again, this caught my eye this time through:
    (my bold)

    Apparently, this has nothing to do with a decrease in hunters leading to an increase in game.

    It's got everything with trying to get more people to hunt just for the sake of more people hunting.

    It also seems no one considered that Michigan's net population has grown very much in the last 40 years. Obviously that is the cause of the "percentage of the population who hunts" being down - not less people deciding to hunt.

    Michigan is only so big, and the number of huntable game is only so large, the number of hunters cannot be expected to increase indefinitely without consequences to the natural balance of the animals.

    I can't believe I missed such a ridiculous thing the first time through.

    Anyone know if Australia is this ridiculous? I've been entertaining the idea of moving...
     
  14. Backtothemac macrumors 601

    Backtothemac

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    #14
    No, I don't think it is silly at all. Man is a predator are we not? Were we not for millions of years? Man, is the largest predator that has been removed from the equation because we have become lazy and rely on comforts too much now. Not like we did for millions of years.
     
  15. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    #15
    I think its debatable as to the role man has played as a "top of the food chain" predator.
     
  16. Josh thread starter macrumors 68000

    Josh

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    #16
    It is silly, because humans are no longer part of nature's equilibrium (as far as casual hunting goes). But the arguement is sometimes made that we "should" be - that is what is silly.

    As pointed out, the biggest problem in over population come after we encroach upon natural habitat and begin spreading our population into the natural world. In reality, that is not over-population of animals in suburbia, but and over-population of suburbia and humans in the natural habitat.

    Hunting is not the solution to a problem that has always existed in nature. It is an excuse to continue the problem we've created ourselves.
     
  17. Backtothemac macrumors 601

    Backtothemac

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    #17
    Have you ever been to Alabama? I am not speaking about the entire country, just to a situation that arose in Alabama. There are massive amounts of woodlands in Alabama. They are protected against building. The overpopulation was in those areas because fewer people were hunting, and because there was a one doe a year limit. They changed it to a doe a day with a bow, and a doe a week with a gun, and the population is now in check, and under control. All species are thriving in the state, and things are well, so it isn't impossible, it isn't silly.
     
  18. Josh thread starter macrumors 68000

    Josh

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    #18
    Although I don't think Alabama is the most urban of states, those animals have to go somewhere each time a subdivision, a parking lot, or a grocery store is built.

    The land gets taken away, but the animals don't. So they flee to the woodland that just happens to be protected.

    While I do agree that hunting can keep the population in check once we've caused imbalance, my point is that we should not be causing the imbalance in the first place.
     
  19. Backtothemac macrumors 601

    Backtothemac

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    #19
    Well, Josh what would you have us do? Live in tents? I hear your arguement, but what is the solution?
     
  20. x86 macrumors regular

    x86

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    #20
    No 10 or even 12 year old is going to be running around the woods with a rifle by themselves. They do have parents you know... I just don't see what the big deal is.
     
  21. OutThere macrumors 603

    OutThere

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    #21
    I learned to shoot at 11 with a bolt action .22. Started on a 20-gauge shotgun at 12. Moved to 12-gauge at 14 or so.

    Targets only, though. I can get my meat at the grocery store. No interest in killing stuff, but I can put shot after shot through the same hole with a .22 and crappy ironsights. :D
     
  22. Backtothemac macrumors 601

    Backtothemac

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    #22
    Thank you. That is exactly what I was thinking.
     
  23. Josh thread starter macrumors 68000

    Josh

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    #23
    A 10 year old could be surrounded by a million responsible people.

    Is that going to change that 10 year-old's speed of judgement, increase their amount of experience, or give them a higher level of maturity and responsibility?

    The adults aren't shooting the guns for the children.

    Look at the stats, consider the situation, and realize that Michigan is trying to increase the number of hunters (which has been constant for 40 years) just because the population is growing - and their solution is more children with guns.

    The fact that they are wanting the number of hunters to increase as the population increases is disturbing. They are ignoring the fact that with a higher population of people, things become more urbanized, and the wildlife has less of a natural area as these people will need places to live, shop, and work.

    This is causing the sense of "over-population" of wildife, while it is just the same number in less of a space. If their plan to increase the number of hunters as population grows (which has been at a rapid rate) this "over-population" paired with the increased loss of wild land is going to under-populate and destroy natural wildlife populations.

    It is an abomination to nature, to society, and common sense as a whole.
     
  24. Backtothemac macrumors 601

    Backtothemac

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    #24
    Josh, will all due respect, an abomination to nature, to society. Please. You are wrong, flat out wrong. There is not a sense of over population of the wildlife.

    http://www.galleryofguns.com/shootingTimes/Articles/displayarticles.asp?id=3625

    Here is a link to a sight that talks about how the white tail deer was nearly extinct in the 1930, is thriving in Alabama today. How they have given nearly 600,000 pounds of meet to operation feed the hungry. How is that an abomination?

    You would really dislike me. I am teaching my 7 year old daughter to hunt. YEA! I am a massive red neck. No. I am just different from you. That is all. Different. We are supposed to tolerate, understand, and accept people's lifestyles, religions, dress attire, all types of stuff, but not if they want to hunt. Those damn hunters are an abomination.

    That is the most two faces **** I have ever heard. IF a parent wants to take their child hunting, so be it. My brother in law has already taken his FIVE year old hunting, and the kid has several kills. There is nothing wrong with it, it is the natural way of things. It is what we have done for millions of years, and should continue to do.
     
  25. Josh thread starter macrumors 68000

    Josh

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    #25

    You seem to be mistaken.

    First, this thread is about Michigan, not Alabama. What happens in Alabama is independent from this bill being passed here in Michigan.

    Secondly, I am not against hunting. I hunt myself, and began at age 12.

    What I am against is the notion that the number of hunters should increase as the state's population increases, and that if a lack hunters is a problem (which I do not feel it is) I do not believe that lowering the age limits to 10 and 12 is the answer.

    Another mistake is to assume that because people have hunted for "millions of years" that we should continue to hunt just for the sake of continuing hunting. Hunting is no longer a necessary process in the ecosystem. I don't disagree with casual hunting that happens today, but to imply that "we've always done it this way, so we should keep doing it this way" is absurd.

    I do not dislike anyone for hunting. I dislike the idea that hunting is necessary and the suggestion that the number of people hunting should increase as the population of people increases. With the exponential rate humans increase their populations, increasing the number of hunters at an equal rate would spell doom for many species and nature.

    The number of hunters should be related to the number of wildife, not the number of people in the state; again, this is not an over-population of animals, but a squeezing of the existing animals into smaller areas. Suggesting to simultaineously increase hunters as this occurs is akin to asking for wildlife to be exterminated.
     

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