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This fact, noted more than two hundred and fifty years ago by Father Jérôme Lallemont, has since been acknowledged by every modern Indian philologist as fully established.
If language may be taken as a fair criterion to go by, the Hurons proper were the original stock from which sprang all the branches of the great Iroquoian family, whether included in the primitive federation of the Five Nations, or standing apart territorially, within historical times, as did the Tuskaroras, the Cherokees, and the Andastes.
When we say that real hunting is not like this, can we expect to be believed? Last spring, Billy Busbice, former chairman of the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission, founder of Wildgame Innovations—makers of trail cams and feeders—and star of his own show “Wildgame Nation”—or at least he used to be—pled guilty to killing a cow calf elk and a bull, after some injudicious lead slinging into a herd, and abandoning the calf carcass in a ditch and tossing the bull’s gut pile into the creek, while hunting on his own ranch in Wyoming in the fall of 2016.
On the video of the “hunt,” Busbice is said to be heard saying, “We have to eliminate that part when I shot a cow.” Following the poaching charges against Busbice, the Outdoor Sportsman Group issued a statement, suspending “Wildgame Nation” and Busbice from appearing on the Outdoor Channel.
Thumb through the Wyoming antelope, deer, and elk regulation booklet and you’ll run across assorted highlighted axioms that would seem too homespun to bear repeating.
Oh, I don’t know, ones like, “Know your maximum effective shooting range.” Or, “Use your binoculars, not a rifle scope, to survey the field.” A hunter who seriously must be reminded of such basics ought to be too embarrassed to sit in the diner at a.m., dunking crullers, let alone going out to look for game.
Which, as so many things in the hunting world seem to, leads us, alas, to Theodore Anthony Nugent.The latest, if somehow not quite most outrageous, example would be Chris Brackett, star of “Fear No Evil” on the Outdoor Channel—or at least he used to be. Brackett, until a few years ago was something of a non-entity, who claims credit for “creating” the “sport of AERIAL BOWFISHING” in which you run a boat down a river to stir up silver carp and then shoot them out of the air (its premiere at the Games of the XXXII Olympiad would appear to be pending), lifted the name of his show from the Psalm of David and reaffirms his visible piety with a white cross around his camouflaged neck. Brackett also favors a type of WWE black face paint and refers to his coterie as “FNE Warriors,” any similarity to Hulkamaniacs almost certainly intentional.His online merchandise line includes a T-shirt emblazoned with the understated, and never less than tasteful, word “Killer.” And his show, he insists, lays claim to a “new revolution in outdoor TV with its high energy, artistic, and movie like feel.” Watching some outtakes from a recent whitetail hunt in Indiana (below), though, leaves the viewer with feelings perhaps not so much of energy and artistry as of repugnance.Ted’s jaw-dropping excuse for his actions, that Alaska’s game laws have been, like so many across this great nation of ours, “ravaged by the over-regulation beast,” demonstrates in him a willing ignorance (unlike that ignorance of his, supposedly, about game laws) of Aldo Leopold’s modest proposal: “Ethical behavior is doing the right thing when no one else is watching—even when doing the wrong thing is legal.” Nugent has hunted in Africa many times, where it is almost universally the rule, ethical and statutory, that when you draw blood, that is your animal whether you recover it or not. The prosecutor in Alaska said there was a blood trail on the first bear, making it his by law, which Nugent doesn’t tell us and which means as well that he and his son don’t seem capable of following up a bleeding bear, which is what he is showing the world. More importantly, is Nugent saying that we may regard the game in our country as being to a degree inferior to game in Africa, as long as what we’re doing is considered legal?
Is that what we want to show our fellow hunters, and the public at large, about hunters and hunting?What does it say about TV hunters who can’t even do the ethical thing when the cameras are rolling?