“Al Fillmore rolls out of the forest on his four-wheeler with blood on his hands and triumph in his eyes. The adrenalin’s still pumping, he says, and he takes a while to collect himself.
An hour before dawn he pulled on fatigues, shouldered a $700 hunting bow and set off into the woods by his home in Wisconsin in search of fulfilment, excitement and venison. He hid and waited. As the sun came up, a 140lb whitetail doe wandered into his line of fire with a fawn trotting behind her.
“I didn’t want to take the fawn, I wanted to take the momma,” he says. So he killed the doe at 19 yards with a single arrow. It was a bad shot, not far forward of the rump, but the arrow’s expanding head severed an artery next to the deer’s spine. He gutted her close to where she fell, then called a friend to help him heave her into a pick-up as the car stereo played Knocking On Heaven’s Door.
He looks contemplative but sated. “I love nature,” he says. “I love these animals. The fawn will be fine.”
This article –in The Times today – is about how Paul Ryan (potentially the new US Vice President) is obsessive about the ‘stealthy art of bow hunting’.
Well I just don’t get it. I simply cannot imagine using a bow and arrow to kill an animal. Perhaps I would have done 5,000 years ago – but in 2012?
But in New South Wales - for the sake of political expediency – the government now allows hunting in National Parks. They broke an election promise because they needed a vote from the Shooters and Fishers Party.
Hunters are actually allowed in amongst the hikers, campers and picnickers to slaughter animals in droves with both guns and bows and arrows.
Now the purpose of the legislation was for hunters to kill animals which are regarded as pests.
In practice of course they kill anything that moves - including occasionally – I am pleased to say – each other.
They also kill things that can barely move – such as Wombats.
This article tells how the Park Rangers feel about it – and how they find hundreds of mangled and mutilated native fauna – and also have to watch out for their own hides in the process.
I think we have a long way to go if at this stage of our ‘development’ as a civilization we still find pleasure in massacring native animals in such a barbaric fashion.