This I Believe

Alec - San Anselmo, California
Entered on March 2, 2007
Age Group: Under 18

Sport Hunting is Wrong

An animal wakes up and hears the stomp of a hunter’s foot approaching it. The animal springs to its feet to run away. Too late; the bullet pierces the animal’s heart. The animal dies in agony. Humans justify hunting wild

animals but I believe that hunting is cruel unless someone needs food.

Killing wildlife for fun is tantamount to murder. Of all hunting, sport hunting revolts me the most. Sport hunters pursue animals even though they do not need food. Sometimes, hunting contests are conducted by clubs. If a hunter kills an animal such as a buck with a big

pair of antlers, he wins a big prize. It is extremely cruel to award a gaudy trophy for taking an animal’s life. The hunters experience no empathy for the animals they hunt. They murder to win a prize.

Some men are pressured to hunt by their friends. They care more about their status in the group than about an animal’s life. If I were pressured by my friends to hunt, I would say, “I’d rather not be your friend than hunt

an animal just to be popular with all of you. An animal has only one life.

How would you feel if you were an animal, killed by a man who wants to be popular?” Killing is not a justifiable recreational pastime among friends.

In the wilderness, far from the nearest grocery or clothing store such as in Northern Canada and parts of Alaska, some people may need to hunt. If they did not, they and their families would die. Their lives depend on

hunting to obtain food to feed themselves and their families.

Killing animals to obtain food and clothing may be acceptable if hunters take care not to overhunt and not to shoot more than one animal in a family.

Hunting tears families of animals apart; an animal becomes an orphan or loses a child. It is exceedingly sad. Under the laws of nature, animals such as the lion and tiger kill animals for survival but never overeat or overhunt. Those animals hunt solely because they require food while some people hunt for trivial reasons.

Before the white man arrived in America, the Native Americans did not overhunt. After many Native American tribes killed an animal, the shaman appealed to that animal’s spirit and apologized for killing that animal.

Yet Native Americans were compelled to hunt for food, clothing and survival. They envisioned a partnership among fellow creatures.

Unlike the lion, the tiger and Native Americans, most modern hunters do not

need to hunt. Hunters could eat domestic animals such as pigs and cows instead of wild animals. Domestic animals are raised to be food while wildlife is not. Another option people can choose is to become vegetarian

instead of eating meat so they will not need to find meat to consume.

I object to sport hunting because I have always loved animals. I seem to have a special way with them though I do not understand quite why. I believe that killing living creatures, no matter what type, is cruel.