What I find most interesting about the Dick Cheney hunting fiasco isn’t that he was in some kind of violation of the law, or that the cops allowed him to illegally stonewall them, or that he obviously fudged the truth, or even that the cops and other local authorities went along with the lies.

What I find most fascinating is that the ‘game ranch’ where Cheney was ‘hunting’ involved caged, virtually domesticated birds who were only freed from their cages in order to be shot. I’m not much of a hunter, but I’m no vegetarian either. If you want some easy quail meat, why not go to the grocery store, and save yourself some time? What’s the point in trying to look macho, when the odds are so stacked that you wind up looking like a sadistic panty-waste?

Anyway, the whole thing is just a punchline gone stale. It does tap into something that I stumbled across the other day, when my good friend Dick J. sent me a copy of the following article, which I suggest you read:

Best elk hunting movie?
by David Stalling

After reading this article, which I found to be quite enlightening and entertaining, I had to reply to Dick J.’s e-mail with the following rant. Please enjoy.

Thought-provoking article. I think the author brings up a point that is central to much of our larger U.S. culture (particularly from an historical standpoint). “The West” was not some unpopulated wilderness waiting to be tamed by “The White Man.” There were numerous vibrant nations and cultures existing there. More importantly, “the West” wasn’t conquered by rugged individualists who wanted nothing more than to live off the fruit of the land. It was swept clean by avaricious capitalists (railroad magnates, gold grabbers, copper cullers, etc.) and their military goons, men who saw little more than profits in the land for which they would lay waste to the aboriginal populations and ways of life.

I’m oversimplifiying a bit, of course, and I’m also not intending to belittle bow-hunting as a recreational pursuit. However, the reason so many bow-hunters are able to have so much land and game available is because powerful men with money and guns at their disposal drove off the previous inhabitants a long time ago. The borders in which bow-hunting can be done safely are more or less protected by much the same. (Hence the irony of a stooge like Ted Nugent chickenshitting his way out of Vietnam, then buying up a huge parcel of land with the money he made off of urbanites and suburbanites nationwide in order to restyle himself as a denizen of the wilderness.)

For some of these same bow-hunters to piss and moan about ‘liberals and treehuggers’ sounds a little like stupidity. Okay, a lot like stupidity. It wasn’t the lib’ruls who spoiled the West. It was the right-wing capitalist earth-rapists. And don’t get me started on the homophobia. Worried about something, Manly Nature Boy? Feeling a bit insecure? Anyway, that’s my rant on the topic. Have to go finish the soup. I’m sure the chicken broth came from a beast that was killed in a most Manly way.

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