Letter From the President – Winter 2012

I am looking over our database of hunting accidents for the year gone by. In just about every way it was a typical year for accidents, with our being able to document 544 that we tracked down through published media reports. Here are a few things we’ve been able to glean from crunching the numbers:

• Victims ranged in age from five to eighty-five years old.
• Over 14% of accident victims were children younger than eighteen.
• Over 14% of fatalities were children younger than eighteen.
• Over 28% of hunting accidents documented were fatal.
• 119 fatalities and injuries were the result of falls from tree stands – over 21%.
• New York had the most injuries/fatalities: 50.
• Accidents and fatalities were recorded in every state, with the exception of Nevada.

I wish we could say that there were only 544 hunting accidents in 2011, but we know that for every accident we document, there are hundreds more that do not come to our attention.

We know this to be true because of an article from the Brandon Valley Challenger, a small weekly out of Dell Rapids, South Dakota. In an article from 2009, a state hunting safety instructor told a reporter that in 2008 there were 4,114 hunting accidents reported in South Dakota alone. Extrapolating this figure to the 50 states and it’s possible that each year there are over two-hundred-thousand hunting accidents in the United States. This is in sharp contrast to the reports coming from the special interests within the hunting industry claiming that hunting with firearms is safer than activities such as bowling or cheerleading. If these numbers are accurate it means that 1.66% of hunters will fall victim to an accident in any given year – what a tragic price to pay for engaging in such an unnecessary activity.

Contrary to what our critics believe, we’re not happy when hunting accidents occur, and if we could change things we’d eliminate hunting accidents altogether by eliminating sport hunting now and forever. But we understand that as long as violent people enter the woods with the intent to kill, there will be times when they will injure and kill themselves and each other – they will become the victims of the very violence they wish to impose upon others. That’s not C.A.S.H. being cold, anti-human, or hateful – it’s our recognition of an undeniable fact.

The moral is: Be safe – Don’t hunt.

Springtime is a wonderful time to enjoy the wild animals who live among us. As the days get longer, and the air gets warmer, we’ll be spending more time outdoors and will be able to enjoy watching nature come alive again. We’ll soon be seeing woodchucks, butterflies, hummingbirds, tortoises, and other animals as they wake up from their winter naps. Keep your camera and binoculars handy, and be sure to take a kid camping, hiking, or boating, because spring is a perfect time to teach young people that wildlife should be respected and that watching animals enjoy their lives is in every way superior to anything else we can do in our interaction with them.



Contact Us

Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting / C.A.S.H.
P.O. Box 562
New Paltz, NY 12561