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Thursday, October 28, 2010

North Dakota Hunters Speak in Support of Measure 2

This week the Humane Society Legislative Fund launched a TV ad campaign in North Dakota, featuring North Dakota hunters who support Measure 2, a ballot initiative seeking to ban the unfair and unsporting practice of shooting tame deer and elk in fenced enclosures. North Dakota hunters led this fight and placed the measure on the ballot, and when HSLF saw them being outspent by the extreme elements of the hunting lobby and the commercial wildlife ranching industry, we decided to help give the responsible hunters an opportunity to make their case to the North Dakota voters.

We interviewed the hunters, and they told us in their own words why they oppose canned hunting and why they support Measure 2. I had a chance to ask Craig Schmidt, one of the North Dakota hunters who appears in the TV ad, to answer a few questions and share some of his thinking with blog readers.

Michael Markarian: Tell us a bit about yourself.

Craig Schmidt: I was born and raised in Minot and have lived in North Dakota my entire life. I’m a hunter and proud of it. My dad was a hunter, my granddad was a hunter. It’s a family tradition.

MM: So why do you support Measure 2?

CS: Because it would stop the unsportsmanlike killing of tame animals. It’s just like shooting caged animals at the zoo. It’s immoral and unethical. That’s why I was happy to lend my support to this effort. It’s important that the word get out there.

MM: What do you think of the opposition’s claim that this measure violates your private property rights?

CS: It’s totally false. Everyone knows that you can’t just do anything you want on your property. You can’t have a toxic waste dump, grow marijuana, or hold dogfights on your property just because you own it. The opposition is just playing on the fears of us North Dakotans and just trying to save their immoral money making schemes.

MM: What do you think would happen if Measure 2 doesn’t pass?

CS: There would be a continued mockery of hunting in this state by those people catering to rich non-North Dakotans who get satisfaction by shooting tame animals trapped against a fence. The failure of this measure would give a green light to more canned hunts and it wouldn’t be long before the everyday North Dakotan no longer has a place to hunt.

MM: What is the one thing you want North Dakotans to know?

CS: Voting YES on Measure 2 is the only way to protect our hunting heritage in this state.

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