Ken Constantine: Hunters are not poachers | SteamboatToday.com

Ken Constantine: Hunters are not poachers

Sunday's political cartoon may have intended to take aim at African trophy hunters but missed its mark and instead took aim at all big game hunters in general. It was plainly insulting and misguided.

More troubling is the lack of distinction between "poachers" and hunters. The great majority of households in Routt County have a hunter in their family. To equate "Big Game Hunters" with what appears to be a poaching incident is unconscionable.

Colorado has had its own episode of poaching adjacent to national parks, notably the trophy bull elk know as Sampson shot by a poacher 18 years ago in Estes Park. The resulting "Sampson's Law" levies very stiff fines and mandatory jail time for convicted poachers of trophy animals. I do not know of a single hunter who does not support Sampson's Law.

Poachers are not hunters but thieves stealing beloved wildlife resources from all of us, hunters and non-hunters alike. Like the vast majority of ethical hunters who take the time and trouble to to do things right, the Pilot needs to take better aim at any target less it misses it mark by such a wide margin again.

Ken Constantine

Owner of Elk River Guns

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