Unsportsmanlike conduct

The canned-hunt industry
Chad Mason, Mennonite pastor and self-described “gun-loving pacifist,” made a strong and—to some readers—persuasive argument for hunting in “Armed and defenseless” (June 27, 2006). But there is one kind of hunting that Mason would, I suspect, strongly disapprove of: “canned” big-game trophy hunts in which animals are placed in fenced or walled private “preserves” and are easy targets with little or no chance of escape. Sometimes the animals are made even easier targets: they are lured to feeding stations or small-field food-crop plots—or are simply herded toward the pretend-hunter. The animals, whether exotic or native, are often quite tame; they have been raised in captivity and do not fear human beings. Some of the animals are so domesticated that they have been known to lick the hunter’s hand before being slain. Some are tied to a stake or drugged before they are shot. A few have even been shot while still caged.


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