Dove Hunting
March 10, 2006 (not published)

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The trouble with todayís youth is that they donít have enough things to shoot at. In an effort to get young people away from TV and video games and into the woods with guns, Michiganís House of Representatives has passed a bill designating the mourning dove as a game animal. Since doves are plentiful and easy to spot, young people - with their notoriously short attention spans - are more likely to stick with it and eventually get hooked on hunting, which is why doves are referred to as a ďgatewayĒ game animal. Sport hunters, who comprise about 9% of Michigan residents, are also scrounging for new recruits among the elderly and the disabled and the inept, who will be able to shoot the hapless doves from a stationary position. Although the state is facing a $ deficit for the current fiscal year, the bill appropriates $350,000 to teach hunters to distinguish mourning doves from airplanes, hats and other birds. I donít hunt, but I do like to hike in the woods, and the only problem I have with hunting is that Iím afraid to go into the woods during hunting season. Iím afraid Iíll get hit by a stray bullet or a hunter falling from a tree stand. Also, itís really hard to hear the birds over the sound of gunfire.

Another version:

I donít hunt, but I do like to hike in the woods, and the only problem I have with hunting is that Iím afraid to go into the woods during hunting season. Iím afraid Iíll get hit by a stray bullet or a hunter falling from a tree stand. Also, itís really hard to hear the birds over the sound of gunfire. Although hunters in Michigan are a small minority (?%), they are very well armed, so thereís not much chance of a hunting ban. But we in the other ?% do not have to allow our tax dollars to be spent on programs to encourage hunting. There was an article in the November 18 State Journal about the DNRís ďBecoming an Outdoors WomanĒ program, which introduces women to hunting. This could lead to the extinction of species. Keep in mind that it is State Representative Susan Tabor, a member of the gentler sex, who wants to legalize dove hunting. As columnist Dave Barry says, women pretty much want to wipe out every creature on the Great Tree of Life below the level of poodle.