Over the past several days we got a glimpse at a sleeping beast. Jim Zumbo, the professional hunter, awakened the beast last weekend with his comments about assault weapons (or "terrorist weapons" as he put it) and their place, or lack thereof, in the hunting environment.
Within hours, Mr. Zumbo's blog was inundated with thousands of comments, the majority of which blasted his ill-conceived position. His sponsors were not spared, with thousands of comments, e-mails, and phone calls threatening canceled subscriptions and boycotts. A hasty apology was issued, but was quickly criticized as insincere and incomplete. Over the next few days, sponsors had severed ties (or were looking for outs), his blog was shut down, and some are wondering about the future of his TV show.
Without question, the criticism was founded, but a lot of it was unnecessarily venomous. That aside, it showed what motivated gun owners and hunters could accomplish when the beast was awakened. They attacked and made their feelings known.
What I want to know is: why is the beast not growling as loudly at those who really want to take away gun and hunting rights? Sure there are people who do a lot in the way of contacting their representatives and the like, but I'd wager that reactions like we saw with the Zumbo incident are few and far between.
Look at a lot of the legislation on the table right now. The Federal assault weapons ban is being reconsidered. New Jersey is considering the one gun a month idea. Maryland is considering an assault weapons ban. The list goes on. It seems that there are critical issues on the table in so many states and in Congress. Are we making waves at the same volume as we did last weekend? I'm not sure we are.
We need the beast to start growling louder. If you don't belong to the NRA, join now. If you can spare the money, sign up a friend, family member, or total stranger. If you can't afford to join yourself, suck up your pride and try and find someone who is willing to sponsor you. If you own guns, are thinking of owning guns, or even don't own any but still support the right, then please, join the NRA today. On top of that, send letters or e-mails and make phone calls to all your state and federal legislators and put them on notice: either they support the Second Amendment or we find someone else who does. It's time to show that our bark and our bite are equally powerful.
Wednesday, February 21, 2007
Over the past several days we got a glimpse at a sleeping beast. Jim Zumbo, the professional hunter, awakened the beast last weekend with his comments about assault weapons (or "terrorist weapons" as he put it) and their place, or lack thereof, in the hunting environment.
Monday, February 19, 2007
Excellent article in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. We should shoot them a note thanking them for a RARE common sense gun story.
Kids and guns: Teach, don't avoid
By Dana Loesch
SPECIAL TO THE POST-DISPATCH
Monday, Feb. 19 2007
The boys and I used to participate in a play group that included several
mothers who were not only against guns, they were against toy guns.
We left the play group after one member publicly chastised me when Liam
brandished a small, neon-orange, empty water pistol and pretended to be a
police officer. They were shocked that I would allow my child to play with such
a “dangerous toy.”
I acknowledged their concern; the percentage of toy gun-related deaths was,
after all, on the rise.
I don’t see a problem with children playing with toy guns. I would have a huge
problem if they were, say, playing with a toy joint.
I have two sons; they are obsessed with swords, light sabers, firearms,
explosives, fire. We never forced it on them; they exhibited an interest on
their own, though I’m sure they absorbed a bit of it by watching Chris and I
shriek with glee whenever one of us blows up something on Independence Day.
My boys will turn anything, including a tampon from their mother’s purse as she
loads groceries onto the conveyor, into a mock firearm.
This isn’t to say that they are uneducated regarding firearms; Liam knows the
difference between automatic and semi-automatic weapons; shotguns; handguns,
etc. He knows to find and tell an adult immediately should he ever happen upon
a firearm. He is fully aware that you can’t “un-shoot” someone. In short, we’ve
approached the issue responsibly.
I have a friend who likes to assign human qualities to firearms. “Guns kill
people,” she says whenever given the chance. I’ve said this before, but in my
28 years on this earth I have never witnessed a gun get up and shoot someone
all by itself.
If I did I would capture it and find a way to make money off of it. I have,
however, heard of people who use guns to shoot other people and who will use
other weapons to harm people if a firearm isn’t available. I think it’s
dangerous to take the responsibility from the person and assign it to an
It undermines gun safety and education. If that theory is allowed, I want to
blame the last speeding ticket I got on my minivan.
My friend believes that the only gun education needed is to tell her daughter
that “guns are bad.” Those who do not own or even like guns can still die from
them as a result. I cannot figure out why my friend, or the mothers at the play
group for that matter, want to pretend that guns don’t exist and that their
children will never be confronted with the issue.
Both Chris and I grew up in families of hunters; my grandfather had a full gun
rack in his pickup. Gun safety was drilled into our heads at very young ages
and it was incomprehensible to play with one.
My friend doesn’t like the thought of her child playing at the homes of friends
who own firearms. My response has always been to inquire about the presence of
firearms first, then ask as to how they are secured from curious youngsters. It’
s our job as parents to be responsible and cautious, not paranoid. I feel that
the latter is irrational.
We own a firearm. It stays locked in a safe. Our families keep their firearms
locked in safes and gun cabinets. Our kids know that it’s irresponsible to
leave a gun lying around the house. Whether or not you own a gun and keep it in
your home, it’s dangerous to avoid the issue. The only thing the avoidance does
is to increase your child’s risk to become a statistic.
Just as dangerous as avoiding the issue is the irresponsible parent who keeps
an unsecured firearm in their home. Those are the parents who stand to lose a
child – or risk the life of another -- from a gun shot wound. Those are the
cases we hear about on television.
What matters most is how and what kids are taught about firearms. I’ve always
believed that pretend play is a great exercise for reality. Positive messages
can be introduced and reinforced through play.
When my kids play with their toy guns, they are the cops chasing the bad guys,
they are soldiers in a war, they are hunting, and they play with their toy in a
responsible manner. In their play, just as it should be in real life, guns are
leverage to their power for good. They’re taught the difference between reality
and play and have developed a healthy respect for the difference.
My friend has asserted that toy guns “encourage violent tendencies.” There is a
way to teach about violence without engaging in it.
I never forget: Whatever my children don’t learn first in my home they will
learn out in the world. I want to give them an advantage.
Let them know how you feel!
Main Phone Number: (314) 340-8000
POST-DISPATCH AND STLTODAY ADDRESS
900 N. Tucker Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63101
E-mail the editor
Posted by OHPA at 8:36 PM
Sunday, February 18, 2007
I was wrong, BIG TIME
Someone once said that to err is human. I just erred, and made without question, the biggest blunder in my 42 years of writing hunting articles.
My blog inflamed legions of people I love most..... hunters and shooters. Obviously, when I wrote that blog, I activated my mouth before engaging my brain.
Let me explain the circumstances surrounding that blog. I was hunting coyotes, and after the hunt was over and being beat up by 60 mph winds all day, I was discussing hunting with one of the young guides. I was tired and exhausted, and I should have gone to bed early. When the guide told me that there was a "huge" following of hunters who use AR 15's and similar weapons to hunt prairies dogs, I was amazed. At that point I wrote the blog, and never thought it through.
Now then, you might not believe what I have to say, but I hope you do. How is it that Zumbo, who has been hunting for more than 50 years, is totally ignorant about these types of guns. I don't know. I shot one once at a target last year, and thought it was cool, but I never considered using one for hunting. I had absolutely no idea how vast the numbers of folks are who use them.
I never intended to be devisive, and I certainly believe in United we Stand, Divided we Fall. I've been an NRA member for 40 years, have attended 8 national NRA conventions in the last 10 years, and I'm an advisory board member for the United States Sportsmen's Alliance which actively fights anti-hunters and animal rights groups for hunter's rights.
What really bothers me are some of the unpatriotic comments leveled at me. I fly the flag 365 days a year in my front yard. Last year, through an essay contest, I hosted a soldier wounded in Iraq to a free hunt in Botswana. This year, through another essay contest, I'm taking two more soldiers on a free moose and elk hunt.
When I started blogging, I was told to write my thoughts, expressing my own opinion. The offensive blog I wrote was MY opinion, and no one else's. None of the companies that I deal with share that opinion, nor were they aware of what I had written until this firestorm started.
Believe it or not, I'm your best friend if you're a hunter or shooter, though it might not seem that way. I simply screwed up. And, to show that I'm sincere about this, I just talked to Ted Nugent, who everyone knows, and is a Board member of the NRA. Ted is extremely active with charities concerning our wounded military, and though he's known as a bowhunter, Ted has no problem with AR 15's and similar firearms. My sincerity stems from the fact that Ted and I are planning a hunt using AR 15's. I intend to learn all I can about them, and again, I'm sorry for inserting my foot in my mouth.
Mr Zumbo, It is a great thing that you made an apology and admitted your lack of knowledge and experience with these arms, Now take the time to take the lead in righting this wrong.
Posted by Tim at 1:26 PM
Well folks, we started this blog to shore up the positive. Now we have a huge negative to overcome. Sadly, this comes right from the mouth of one of our most prolific writers and TV personalities: Jim Zumbo.
Assault Rifles For Hunters?
As I write this, I'm hunting coyotes in southeastern Wyoming with Eddie Stevenson, PR Manager for Remington Arms, Greg Dennison, who is senior research engineer for Remington, and several writers. We're testing Remington's brand new .17 cal Spitfire bullet on coyotes.
I must be living in a vacuum. The guides on our hunt tell me that the use of AR and AK rifles have a rapidly growing following among hunters, especially prairie dog hunters. I had no clue. Only once in my life have I ever seen anyone using one of these firearms.
I call them "assault" rifles, which may upset some people. Excuse me, maybe I'm a traditionalist, but I see no place for these weapons among our hunting fraternity. I'll go so far as to call them "terrorist" rifles. They tell me that some companies are producing assault rifles that are "tackdrivers."
Sorry, folks, in my humble opinion, these things have no place in hunting. We don't need to be lumped into the group of people who terrorize the world with them, which is an obvious concern. I've always been comfortable with the statement that hunters don't use assault rifles. We've always been proud of our "sporting firearms."
This really has me concerned. As hunters, we don't need the image of walking around the woods carrying one of these weapons. To most of the public, an assault rifle is a terrifying thing. Let's divorce ourselves from them. I say game departments should ban them from the praries and woods.
In this article, as you can see he calls AR and AK rifles "terrorist weapons" and that "they have no place in our hunting fraternity". He also states that "Game Departments should ban them from the prairies and woods" and that we should "Divorce Ourselves from them ".
What Mr. Zumbo fails to understand is that functionally these weapons are no different than any other .223 or .308 caliber firearm. He also fails to grasp the concept that the anti- gun community has settled for an incremental agenda and once one type of firearm is banned others will follow. Once they get an inroad via so called "assault weapons" they will come after ALL the semi- automatic rifles. The anti's have the general public believing that these weapons function differently, have a longer range, and have more power than "sporting firearms". This could not be further from the truth, a .223 is a .223 weather it is fired from a single shot rife or a semi-automatic rifle.
Mr. Zumbo also fails to remember his history. The 30-06 rifle cartridge was developed for the military. He also forgets that 30 Caliber ammunition has been used by the US Military for nearly 70 years.
By calling these weapons "terrrorist weapons" he also slaps all the Military, competitive shooters and plinkers in the face and labels them terrorists. With this article, written by a well respected author, he has done more damage to the shooting sports than 10 years of Anti- Gun propaganda. I encourage you all to realize that banning one will lead to the ban on all.
Weather you agree with Mr. Zumbo or not is irrelavent. What is relavent is that once the anti's get a foothold there will be a domino effect and then your "sporting arms" are in danger.The anti's know exactly what they are doing and exactly how to spread disinformation to further their agenda. Write often, write intelligently and firmly to Mr. Zumbo and his sponsors and express your displeasure. I fear the damage has already been done.
STAND UNITED for ALL Sportsmen, even if its not "your way".
Posted by Tim at 11:15 AM
Saturday, February 10, 2007
Following is the first part into an exploration of the positive influence of hunting on the hunter. For those who let it, hunting can become much more than simply going out in the wilderness and getting some meat. It is a spiritual event, putting one in closer touch with nature. Becoming part of the cycle of life can have a profound effect. In this part, and in future installments, I will examine this process by relating stories and interviews with you that have been shared with me, in hopes that you might make the same journey yourself.
Each year, more than 18.5 million hunters in the
There is no question what effect hunters have on the environment, the community, and on the economy. But what is the effect of hunting on the hunter? What positive influence does hunting have on one’s life? Is hunting a life-changing experience?
Todd C. from
According to Todd, “The feeling of being one with Nature is something that a non-hunter simply cannot understand. I wish I had discovered this emotion earlier in life and now feel sorry for those that are not able to experience the spiritual impact of the woods.”
Why did he wait so long to take up hunting?
“As a youngster, my grandfather would often take me fishing with him”, he says. “My father went hunting a few times while I was young but only for a few years. Throughout my teen years I continued to fish and never really gave much thought about hunting.”
As Todd entered adulthood, the spirit of the wild evaded him. That is, until one night in the 1990s.
“In 1992, the idea of hunting was thrust upon me after going to a Damn Yankees concert. A small catalogue belonging to Ted Nugent was being handed to concert goers. The hunting seed was first planted within me that night.”
The seed was planted, but unfortunately it didn’t germinate until many years later.
“While I read stories about hunting and came to understand the ecological benefits of it, I never actually went”, Todd recalls. “Time, the lack of knowing anyone who hunted, and honestly, apathy, all stood in my way for years.”
Late in 2003, all that would change. Todd and his wife left the
After a few unproductive hunts, he decided to try again on some nearby public lands. Late in the afternoon, Todd would have his chance. He recounts the moment.
“With shaking hands and a pounding heart that I was certain could be heard by the deer, I raised my crossbow and prepared myself. Cautiously a buck came onto the cleared old logging road and I took the shot. With a high kick of his back legs he crashed into the bush. I was ecstatic. I leaped into the air with a triumphant fist pump. I had never experienced an emotion like that. It was truly exhilarating.“
Unfortunately, his first hunt would take an unexpected and unfortunate turn. His deer took off running. Todd tracked it for several hours as darkness descended, and eventually had to give up. That evening, the emotion was overwhelming.
“I won’t hide the fact that I cried that evening. I had shot my first deer and I was unable to find it. What could be worse for a first-time hunter?”
Todd turned back to Ted Nugent, the man who first planted the seed, for guidance. He posted a message on the forum on Nugent’s website, and it was a reply from The Nuge himself that helped Todd get back on track.
“Ted explained how thousands of animals are wounded each year from bald eagles, bears, wolves, coyotes and cougars. That’s Nature, and as long as I, as a hunter, did everything in my power to recover my attempted kill, it was OK”, Todd recalls. “Those comments still resonate within me today. A few days later I successfully shot and recovered my first buck, an experience that is forever imprinted within me.”
How have these experiences affected Todd?
“I learned something about myself after not being able to recover that deer. I care. And I care deeply. I believe I always had a deep appreciation for Nature but now I was a part of the cycle. Being part of that has now become a passion for me.”
The effects of these experiences have been profound. For Todd, hunting hasn’t been just about feeding himself, doing his part for conservation, or taking up a hobby. It has been an exploration of him. And that journey has taken him closer to Nature. He has taken part in the wondrous cycle of life. The spirit of nature has overtaken him. Todd has been changed by hunting and the best part is: the journey never ends.
 Source: National Shooting Sports Foundation, 2007 at http://www.nssf.org/hunting/index.cfm?AoI=hunting
Posted by Mike Gray at 8:02 PM
As you know, Our mission is to encourage Proactive and Positive emphasis for what we all love.
Here are some resources for you to use and enjoy.
Joe is a founding member and Vice President of OHPA. His insight and hands on news source. His shows regularly have the most recent news, tips and commentary.
Hunt Zone America
HZA is a website founded by another founding member of OHPA. Douglas has traveled the country searching for the organizations we don't always hear about; either because they are a local organization or because they are small and just don't have the capability to reach beyond their borders. I encourage you to check it out and you may just find that there are folks or programs nearby that you can get involved with.
Save Outdoor Sports
Save Outdoor Sports is an internet based shopping and information source designed to directly benefit the shooting sports and causes within the shooting sports such as Hunt of a Lifetime, Ted Nugent Kamp 4 Kids/Freedom's Angels, IBO Bowhunter Defense Fund, National Archery in the Schools and the National Trappers Association among others. I have been involved with SOS for about 2 years now as VP of Sales and Marketing and have seen it steadily expand and improve.
Posted by Tim at 1:12 PM
Wednesday, February 7, 2007
I know I am far from the smartest man on the planet; but it seems to me that some simple things are regularly overlooked. Now this article is based on MY archery observations in recent months, so take it for what it is worth.
Nick Cage- Movie about becoming an archer despite problems in personal life ( although I believe the ball was dropped via an anti-hunting comment later on in the film).
Jessica Biel- Former Vegatarian, Blade III actress underwent extensive archery trainning for her role.
Geena Davis- Actress, Archer and Womens Sports Foundation advocate.
Those are just 3 that come to mind. When was the last time any one of these folks has heard from bowhunters and archers in a positive way? Look at the following links and just think about what the pictures say to Non participants.
Geena takes Aim
Read her 3 Articles too. Interesting, from a different perspective she is telling women to do the same thing Ted Nugent, the NRA and others tell us to do.
Of all the pictures she could have on her Join page, I find it telling that she is at full draw.
The Weather Man
Be sure to look at the photo gallery here. 2 of 12 pictures contain Archery, one with his screen daughter and one solo, plus the front cover photo. Notice how this is "real life" not some fantasy film or historical film. A regular guy using archery to hold himself together.
Now, I don't expect what I say here would make any difference in what these folks think of Hunting, Hunters or the outdoors community as a whole; BUT if we don't drop a small thank you for the positives we will never know for sure. I surmise that writing a letter or comment that says "Hey Thanks for having archery portrayed positively" will go alot further than saying nothing.
Here is how I see it. Kid sees film with popular star shooting a bow, kid finds out NASP is active in their school and tries archery, kid likes archery and seeks a way to participate outside of school and finds local club, Kids parents find out they can participate with kid, Both get exposed to other forms of archery and also the truth about hunting. This seems like a win/win situation all around to me. Kids exposed to a life sport, family unit is strengthend, local clubs gain members, industry grows and celebrities gain useful insight from folks they don't normally here from.
Take it for what it is worth, but if we don't try how do we know?
Saturday, February 3, 2007
A New York paper cuts through the gun control propaganda with facts!
Concealing the Facts
New York Sun Staff Editorial
February 2, 2007
In respect of gun control, we don't mind saying that it's not the issue that keeps us up at night. But as an emblem of the irrational streak in our political debate these days, it's without peer, a point about which we were reminded by the editorial in Tuesday's Times, "A Day Without Guns … ." It was arguing, if that's the word, against Florida's liberalized concealed carry laws. Basing its comments on research done by the Florida Sun-Sentinel that showed some criminals in Florida have gotten permits to carry concealed weapons, the Times decried the state Legislature's "gruesome handiwork." It chided the "corrupt and cowardly" legislators who refused to "undo these lethal threats" created by legal concealed carry.
Our first thought was that Floridians are grown-ups possessed of rational minds and capable of making their own laws without the Times' haranguing. This is what Floridians have done over the last two decades by repeatedly electing representatives who believe Americans have a right, vouchsafed in the Second Amendment of the Constitution, to keep and bear arms. It's a right that has been called the palladium of American liberty. But about what was the Times speaking with the claim that Florida's concealed carry laws are "lethal" and "gruesome"?
Since the Jack Hagler Self Defense Act went into effect in 1987, crime in Florida has gone down by almost every measure there is. According to statistics provided by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, firearm murders in Florida between 1987 and 2005 dropped in real terms to 521 from 697. Expressed as the number of firearm murders per 100,000 persons, the drop is even more dramatic, to 2.9 from 5.8. That's a change of 50%. The drop in violent crime overall is less precipitous but equally steady, including drops in the rates of murder, aggravated assault, robbery, and sexual assault.
It is difficult to argue that permitting more persons to carry concealed weapons in and of itself caused this drop in crime, although some have tried. Causal relationships of that nature are notoriously tricky to pin down, and the relationship between crime and concealed carry has been explored in academic circles for years, with little consensus. But it's even harder, given the statistics, to argue that legalizing the carry of concealed weapons has increased crime. Or that it has had some terrible adverse consequence.
Predictions of wild-West style shootouts and lawlessness have proven false. That's not what happened. Not in Florida or in any of the other 37 states with legalized concealed carry. There is nothing "lethal" or "gruesome" about permitting law-abiding citizens to defend themselves by carrying a weapon — or simply to carry a weapon without defending themselves. The truth is that if there is a lesson to be drawn from the Sun-Sentinel's reporting, it's not, as the Times suggests, that there is something wrong with existing laws. Rather it is that judges should start treating criminals as the law prescribes.
In Florida, the law on concealed carry allows persons who have committed serious crimes and have reached plea agreements with judges to have their records scrubbed, to become eligible once more to receive a concealed carry license. An ordinary person might expect an editorial writer opining on all this, particularly in a city where the mayor is trying to make an issue out of "illegal" guns, to look into the statistics on crime and include these facts in an editorial, if only to deal with them. But at the Times, they're not fit to print.
Let the NEW YORK SUN know that we agree with this editorial!
Posted by OHPA at 3:14 AM
Friday, February 2, 2007
(This is a post from TIM4TROUT on the Nuge board)
OK Folks ... The BEST Way to get back at the hsus for stopping dove hunting in Michigan is to push dove hunting through in another state (IA) where it does not currently exist.
Oh and BTW, Unlike Michigan ... Iowa does not have the citizens initiative process where factions like the hsus can pay signature gatherers to put the issue on the ballot and con voters into opposing it.
Senate File 82
Section 1. Section 481A.48, subsection 1, Code 2007, is amended to read as follows:
1. No A person, except as otherwise provided by law, shall not willfully disturb, pursue, shoot, kill, take or attempt to take or have in possession any of the following game birds or animals except within the open season established by the commission Gray or fox squirrel, bobwhite quail, cottontail or jackrabbit, duck, snipe, pheasant, goose, woodcock, partridge, mourning dove, coot, rail, ruffed grouse, wild turkey, pigeons, or deer. The seasons, bag limits, possession limits, and locality shall be established by the department or commission under the authority of sections 456A.24, 481A.38, and 481A.39.
This bill authorizes the natural resource commission to establish an open season for hunting mourning doves.
Bill History for SF 82
A bill for an act allowing the establishment of an open season for hunting mourning doves.
January 31, 2007 Introduced, referred to Natural Resources and Environment. S.J. 239.
If we want to succeed --EVERY hunter, trapper, and fisherman in America needs to flood the committee members with emails, letters, and phone calls in support of this.
E-mail the committee members:
- Dennis H. Black (D, District 21), Chair
- Tom Hancock (D, District 16), Vice Chair
- E. Thurman Gaskill (R, District 6), Ranking Member
- Jerry Behn (R, District 24)
- Joe Bolkcom (D, District 39)
- Dick L. Dearden (D, District 34)
- Rob Hogg (D, District 19)
- David Johnson (R, District 3)
- Steve Kettering (R, District 26)
- Mary Lundby (R, District 18)
- Larry Noble (R, District 35)
- Amanda Ragan (D, District 7)
- Brian Schoenjahn (D, District 12)
- Dr. Joe M. Seng (D, District 43)
- Frank Wood (D, District 42)
This story is also featured here in the Gazette, an Eastern Iowa newspaper.
Let the Gazette know we support Dove Hunting!
E-mail the Editormark.firstname.lastname@example.org
Posted by OHPA at 3:07 PM