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Have You Fired Your Last Shot? Anti-Hunters Running The Show

newsletter 2 16 fired last shot
Watch what you ask for, Idaho, you just might get it!

It is that time of year again when everyone is out shed hunting and the early planning stages of hunt applications are creeping into the back of every hunter’s mind. But that may not be true for some volunteers in Idaho if one or both proposed Senate bills pass. And that could spell bad news for hunters in general.

We all hear rumblings from time to time about how curious it is that certain folks always seem to draw great tags. Apparently in Idaho the rumblings are so loud that two separate legislators want to privatize the draw process in the interests of total transparency so that hunters that don’t draw tags can feel secure knowing that they are getting a fair shake. For some reason Idaho hunters question why certain Department of Fish and Game employees and their family members always seem to draw great tags. Whether or not that is true, both bills are designed to make the application and drawing process more transparent by paying $102,500 per year to a private company to manage the draw. Aside from the money, there is a real problem with some finer points in one of the bills as proposed.

It is being reported that one of the two bills would restrict Fish and Game Commission members and Department of Fish and Game employees from entering the draw. That creates the potential for a chilling effect, and could significantly alter the future of hunting in Idaho.

First, why would any state want to keep their wildlife commission members and F&G employees from being in the field? Many of the members and employees spend a lot of their free time hunting, during which they get a first-hand look at habitat, animal quality and all aspects of the condition of their state’s wildlife. Keeping commission members and employees from applying for tags is not beneficial in any way.

Next, there is a chilling effect that will result. Keeping commission members and employees from applying for tags is a big deterrent. Many state wildlife commissions are made up of volunteers. If a state keeps them from applying for tags not only is the person donating their time, but also giving up a basic and inherent right to hunt. And it’s pretty clear that state fish and game employees don’t take the job for the money.

Who would be fine foregoing their hunting privileges to sit on a state’s wildlife commission or work for the Fish and Game? Anti-hunters and people that don’t appreciate hunting heritage, that’s who. Does Idaho want its wildlife commission to be made up of people that don’t hunt? States all across the country have pro-animal rights advocates sitting on wildlife commissions and it usually doesn’t take long for those folks to start attacking aspects of hunting. Bear hunts and trapping usually are the first to be questioned, and it goes from there.

Nobody wants to be a part of a draw where it seems the results are rigged, whether it is a raffle for a gun at the local conservation event or during the drawing for a coveted tag. But restricting commission members and Fish and Game employees from applying is like killing a fly with a nuclear bomb—sure it gets the job done but the fallout is more catastrophic than the original problem. And in defense of the legislator that proposed the restriction, he is quoted as saying this is the “nuclear option.” The analogy isn’t too far from reality.

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About Jason Peak

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Jason Peak is a practicing attorney licensed in Nevada and California. He specializes in civil litigation and holds the highest distinction as a Martindale-Hubbell AV-rated attorney. After receiving a B.A. from the University of Nevada in Criminal Justice and Juris Doctor from Willamette University in Salem, Oregon, he grew his practice into one of the largest Nevada-only civil litigation firms in the state. Jason uses his legal background to help hunters maneuver the legal maze of hunting regulations and rules. He is always willing to help hunters with any questions they may have. Jason loves bowhunting and chases trophy big game from California to Wyoming with the occasional stint in Kansas hunting whitetails.

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  1. The argument that this will only encourage non-hunters to join Fish & Game should be argument number one. If there are hunters pushing this bill, I doubt any of them had that much forethought when they were coming up with this.

  2. The hunter organizations in Idaho should be starting e-mail responses to the politicians campaign so all hunters resident and non resident can respond. Idaho is a great state to visit and hunt (really beautiful) .

  3. I am afraid hunting as we know it is gradually going away..Already has in many areas..Shame,but too many people today and not enough game to go around..,Hate to say it but people breedng at high rates is not our friend.

  4. I disagree with this proposal on many levels but I think you make a huge leap to say the commission would be full of non-hunters. They can still hunt but they just can’t apply for controlled hunts. Eastmans starts these blogs but I rarely see anyone from the organization come back on and reply to requests for information or to enlightened us further. Why?

  5. I just cracked 80 years in January and hope I haven’t fired my last Western Shot/arrow. I have 12 Bonus/loyalty points in AZ but am afraid I’ll run out of years before drawing a tag. I am fortunate to have shot 4 elk including a nice Colorado ML 5×6. Note that to me, a Muzzle Loader is a Bill Large barreled home built Hawken .58 Cal round ball with open sights. Screw this TC scope mounted stuff. Not the true ML concept.

    • Paul are you applying for archery or rifle elk? There are some great units you can draw for archery that you are 100% to draw with 12 points… best of luck on the draw!!!!!

  6. Rigged drawings have been going on here in Oregon for years. It is especially obvious in the bighorn sheep drawings.

  7. If Idaho’s proposal is as stated, I don’t agree with it at all. Public service is thankless enough as it is, this would be the icing on the cake to make folks NOT want to serve if it could only dampen their abilities to hunt in their home state.

    I really suspect that if the truth were truly known, there are most certainly more anti folks within many states game commission ranks than are realized. Politics are alive and well in many state game commissions, make no mistake about it, just as one of the previous posters stated is the case in California.

    On the other hand, another hard pill to swallow is those commission members who may be doing things on the up and up but are perceived as shady, especially when they do not recuse themselves for voting matters where they stand a chance to benefit, such as landowner tags.

    Do your own research on your commission members and their voting records and then look at what subjects they recuse themselves from, do they have the integrity necessary to hold the position and to avoid bad perception? If the answer does not sit well with you, let those who appoint your game commission members hear your voice, you can bet the farm the anti folks sure let their voices be heard, often and loud!

    • I’d also like to add, since there is soooo much bad perception in sooo many states with regards to tags drawn by friends/good ol boys that the states should post EXACTLY what their daw process entails and what random number generator they use for their drawings.

  8. Here in Oregon I built a building in the 90s for the fish and game , on the desk of the game manager were two coveted elk and deer tags that would have been like winning the state lottery
    For the average joe but this guy had two of them , he quickly changed the subject . Anytime you put peaple in a position of power there is almost always corruption .

  9. In Idaho, the Governor appoints the Fish and Game Commisioners with Legislative approval.

  10. We have the same thing going on here in alaska. I have been putting in for dall sheep tags for 26 years and have never been drawn, but i see the same names every year that have drawn a tag.

  11. David Calderwood

    I retired in 1998 and have been fighting the animal rights zealots ever since on a local, state and national level. I’m also the chair of a national committee made up of Legislative Liaisons from an AKC Parent dog club. My education on the animal rights agenda tells me this sure sounds like the brainchild of Wayne Pacelle of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), which is the biggest and richest anti-hunting organization in America. Can you imagine the glee this group would feel appointing one of their own to the Game Commission? Anyone who thinks this is a good idea needs to wake up to the anti-hunting animal rights agenda. The HSUS now has a yearly budget of between 150 million and 200 million dollars. A lot of people can be bought with that kind of money!!!

  12. There should be televised tag drawings using a ball, and cage setup, just like the powerball lottery. Do a game tag night, ask for donated airtime by the local TV station, have several cages running with commission members pulling the balls, others entering results into computers, and the big pulls, like sheep, Shiras moose, or eventually Grizzly, could be called out when pulled. Elk, deer, antelope could be pulled, and logged in real time on a PC, and applicants could log on and look

    • That would be a good idea, I think. The advertisers would pay well to get into that time slot- they could use the proceeds to obtain more lands for public hunting use. I just hope they couldn’t be rigged to easily!

  13. Well its sad to see that the good old boy system is in Idaho Fish and Game. So rigged. Send to to a private company and let them deal with the drawing procedures so the Fish and Game people can still put in and make it fair for everyone. Nothing but greed anymore.

  14. Eastmans is absolutly correct and the great hunters of Idaho should denounce that legistration as loud and often as they can. If anti-hunters gain control of the hunting commission they will over regulate,add fees, and dish citations out like candy. They will make hunting impossible and destroy a heritage that we have all shared with our families. Lets don’t forget these people don’t like ranchers, or anything that has to do with agriculture. The anti hunters would use their “Newly Acquired “position to validate themselves on other liberal outdoor issues.
    Don’t let your perception get the best of ya and be very careful for what ya wish for you just might get it,Ouch!

  15. I am pretty sure that i was the idaho dnr sign on the system consultants building I drive by every day in fallon nv. System consultants does the draws for several western states including nevada, utah, I believe new mexico and a few others. I find it hard to believe that people from wildlife management in those places has much input on who gets what. Other than maybe limiting what they send to system consultants.

  16. Zane Gallegos

    Who are the reps pushing this bill? It’d be nice to know to contact them. I live in Idaho and this is the first I have heard of it…

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