Editorial: Poaching Hits Close to Home

Poaching+gives+hunters+a+bad+name.+

Keith Schweigert

Poaching gives hunters a bad name.

Anonymous, Reporter

 

     Everyone is familiar with the stories of criminals poaching animals senslessly overseas in underdeveloped countries in the continent of Africa, but this time, the poaching has taken place in possibly your own back yard. For those of you unfamiliar with the term “poaching,” it’s defined as the act of illegally killing animals. 

     Recently, our area has seen a surge in cases of our beloved whitetail deer being senslessly slaughtered for no reason other than entertainment for the perpetrators. There has allegedly been dozens of deer poached by both General McLane and Cambridge Springs high school students. Not only is this morally disgusting, it’s also very devastating to the environment. Many whitetails that were shot were of breeding age and quite possibly could’ve already began the breeding process.

     Not only is poaching detrimental to the whitetail herd, it’s also a very big stab in the back to us legal, and ethical hunters who put countless hours of work in to practice our shots, set up tree stands, blinds, and trail cameras, and sit there waiting for the chance to harvest meat that almost never goes to waste.

   Furthermore, if stories like this hit the news, non, or anti-hunters, automatically begin labeling all hunters as heartless, cruel, and savage humans that only kill for entertainment when this just isn’t true. Almost all of us are out there to get closer to nature, provide for our families, and to responsibly, and respectfully, maintain wildlife populations. Our goal as hunters is to protect wildlife for generations to come, not damage it.

     Those guilty of this heinous crime should be criminally punished to the fullest extent allowed by law, banned from hunting, have their firearms confiscated, and pay reparations for the animals they senselessly killed.