Open season for different reasons

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Blayne Lindquist

Blayne Lindquist (’16) poses with a buck.

Camden Johnson, Reporter

       The harvesting of animals used to be an everyday thing but now it is a controversial topic because people think that it is now a leisure activity. There has been a lot of debate in recent years in this topic. The two sides of the debate have been whether to allow hunting to continue as is or to ban it altogether. The sides opposing hunting have brought up points of animal rights and human safety. The sides supporting have brought up the points of population control and also human safety.

     For example, The white tail deer flourish in the United States because there are very few natural predators.  In Northern Illinois the only predator that can have any impact on the deer population is coyotes. The Department of Natural Resources has started sharp-shooting the deer to try and control the population. That means that even with hunting the deer population is too high. When the deer are overpopulated it causes the spread of disease. There is a disease rampaging through the deer population called Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD). The first confirmed case of CWD was in Boone County in 2002. Every since then there have been 125 confirmed cases here in Boone County. CWD is a neurological disease that attacks parts of the brain. Parts of the deer’s brain start to die and the brain becomes almost like Swiss cheese, with parts of the brain working and other parts not working. By banning hunting the deer and other popularly hunted animals populations would explode causing spread of other diseases and food shortages in the animals. This would also cause more animal involved car accidents; which can be quite dangerous because deer have been known to jump to about windshield height when hit. The

     The opposing sides have brought up the argument of human safety. According the International Hunter Education association there are around 1,000 hunting accidents a year in the United States. There were just over 100 fatalities. In 2015 there were 16.67 million registered hunters in the United States. That is only  .006% of all hunters that were injured in firearm related injuries. Another argument they have is that the animals have feelings. But animals are driven by pure instinct.

       The hunting and harvesting of animals should not be banned because it provides food for many families and an enormous amount of revenue for the state.