Deer Hunting Farms, Is There Really An Issue?

I opened the IndyStar this morning an a large lump of articles popped up on the home screen attacking Deer Farms where hunters pay for the opportunity at a trophy buck. I haven’t read through every article yet, but I’m already getting the concept. They clearly think that these types of places need to be regulated and possibly completely eradicated.

I hunt, and yes, I would even like a trophy buck someday. No, I do not understand why someone would want to go to farm to hunt trophy game. That takes away from what I like about hunting.

But, I don’t see what is so fundamentally wrong about the concept. Indy Star writers do seem to have a lot of insight on how these types of farms can spread chronic wasting disease (CWD).  I’m certainly no expert on those issues, but do wonder how much things like CWD are really effecting the deer population. Maybe its the cynic in me, but I often wonder if the effect is greatly overstated. Do other diseases at other types of farms have similar, higher, or lower rates? The truth is that I don’t know and can’t answer that.

I’m just going to stick with arguing their ethical and political concerns.  I don’t see the ethical issue here at all. We farm many other types of animals in much worse conditions than most of the deer “preserves.”  These animals have a much more free life than other farmed animals. Hunters might be able to shoot them much, much easier than a deer in the wild. But I can walk up to a cow or pig on any farm and end its life with little fanfare. I must reiterate that I don’t understand “hunting” in this manner, but I don’t take issue with it at all.

On the political side, it is clear that the Indy Star has an agenda for more laws and regulations. I don’t see the need. Central to the argument that is presented is that there might be a problem, so we need more regulation. Why? Have you proven that the problems exist or just that there is risk that they could exist? Further, I don’t see this industry growing too large. Most hunters don’t want to shoot at caged animals.  The industry will never grow as large as the authors of these articles seem to imply. So, even if there is a problem, will it ever grow large enough to cause any actual concern? I’m doubting it. But it’s clear that the Indy Star as a whole has joined in on the “we need more laws and regulations bandwagon.”

I can’t say I’m an expert on these matters. I don’t have all the facts. I’m just a hunter who gets put off by the idea that anything and everything needs regulated. Most sportsmen whom I know, take better care of the animal population and environment than anyone else. They will continue that without laws and regulations.

Please, if we are going to err, let us err on the side of freedom.

Pence Approves Mass Transit Bill – Hopefully taxpayers will be smart enough to shoot it down.

Gov. Pence signed the central Indiana mass transit bill this week. The issue now goes to the taxpayers in six counties for approval. A referendum will be held to determine if taxpayers will volunteer for increase income taxes to fund the system. A proposal for a light rail system (which are notoriously underused and incredibly expensive) was removed from the bill.

If voters do approve, it would be a huge waste of money. Traditionally, all mass transit comes up short of supporting itself and always demands increases in funding. Simply put, not only will it allow a tax increase to fund the proposition, but will likely result in ever-growing requests for funding in the future. Taxpayers would be wise to vote against the idea when it shows up on the ballot.

Like it or not, America is extremely devoted to their cars. Mass transit might make some trips cheaper, but it doesn’t always make sense to ride the bus, nor does it seem that it is any more environmentally friendly.  Cars are more convenient and more economical for longer trip commutes.

Indianapolis already has IndyGo for people commuting within the city. When you boil this bill down, it is about people in the surrounding counties being able to get from the suburbs to the city. When viewed like that, an increase in taxes for something that will probably cost more (via taxes and rates or rates alone) does not hold water as a sound idea. The ridership will probably be lacking, as most people who live in surrounding communities, work in those surrounding communities.  And for those who don’t, probably will drive into the city regardless.

Since central Indiana counties have flat tax rates, this will be a situation where the needs of a few, are subsidizing the rest. If you were to live in Carmel, and work in Carmel, why would you want to increase your own taxes for the benefit of those who wish to commute into Indianapolis. Yes, you might like to take the bus into town once a month on the weekends, but will that make up for the cost you will pay in increase income taxes, likely not.

Overall this just seems to strike as a bad idea for central Indiana residents. Hopefully taxpayers will put this issue to rest once it is on the ballot. However, knowing how many people tend to vote, don’t hold your breath. If there truly is a demand for this, can’t we propose a free market solution that will work out better for all that are involved?

Cato Institute’s Randal O’Toole posted a good article on this subject back in 2013 and it still bears for a good read today.

Guns Now Allowed in School Parking Lots

It’s a small victory for liberty minded gun toting folks in Indiana, but Governor Mike Pence approved the law allowing guns is school parking lots (as long as they are locked in a vehicle and hidden from sight) on Wednesday.  Students still cannot keep guns in their cars, but those picking up their children from school can no longer be prosecuted when bringing a firearm with them on school grounds.

Previously, a parent or other legal gun owner could be prosecuted with a felony for even inadvertently having it in their car on school grounds. And even after the passage of this bill it will still remain a felony for people to bring their gun inside of the school.

Critics of the law seemed to dish out their usual argument lacking logic and in some cases outright lying.  Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America put out a press release in their opposition to the bill that pulled the typical emotional appeal that lacked any real evidence. Shannon Watts, the founder of MDA stated, “this bill would allow loaded guns near our children in the place they should feel safest -their schools.” That statement is clearly meant for national appeal and has no empirical evidence to support it. The bill still does not allow guns in schools (something I wouldn’t mind seeing), but allows for guns hidden in locked compartments in one’s car.  If they can’t see it, they don’t even know it’s there. If you get it out, it’s still illegal. Further, children, if they did know, should feel safer knowing that the protection of a firearm is nearby, should some dangerous situation arise.

All this new law really does is make unsuspecting people who have a firearm in their car no longer potential felons. It is a small victory for people who believe in liberty and wish to see constitutional rights upheld, no matter the situation. In our current situation in the United States, we have to take all of the small victories that we can get.

Thanks for this one Governor Pence.