As I read through the posts from all of the wonderful supporters of the Jones family, it is hard to imagine how even a small minority of people can be so insensitive. Kendall Jones, a Texas Tech Cheerleader and high profile hunter born and raised in Texas understands this as well as anyone. Kendall’s father, Cody, was tragically killed late last week in a vehicle accident, so naturally, thousands of supporters, well wishers and yes, even haters left comments on Kendall Facebook page. There is no question that there is widespread division (albeit grossly lopsided) on the subject of hunting and even fishing, much of it fueled on social media and as much by mainstream media. You should read some of the ridiculousness spilled on the web, directed at and about this family and others like them. I myself have been slandered by the anti-hunting establishment because I am a taxidermist and I haven’t even hunted in several years! Now, here’s my take…Its ok to have an opinion and even strong feelings about something…that’s the beauty of being an American. We could all agree to disagree and continue to support and defend our own positions without getting aggressively personal, but that is not going to happen because there will always be mouthy extremists who operate solely on emotion.
Cody Jones was a hard working family man, a Christian man living his Texas heritage…his American Heritage. He gave tremendous amounts of time and effort to the true cause of Wildlife Conservation. For many of those who personify every wild animal in the vein of their favorite Disney characters, conservation is as simple as stopping the killing of wild animals, and nothing could be further from the truth. Management, Maintenance, Sustainment and Preservation are all keywords among others that work concurrently toward the conservation effort, paid for almost entirely by men and women all over the country and abroad who hunt and fish or support the true and proven concepts of Conservation. These are people, like most who consume meat but unlike others, choose to harvest their own in fair chase. They pour billions into the economies of cities and towns across this country not to mention the positive impact they make on struggling villages in many parts of the undeveloped world. Their efforts provide jobs, feed and clothe locals, deter poachers and give farmers a better option at protecting their assets. These are the people that truly care about the conservation effort because they don’t just talk about it…they act on it. Is this overwhelming majority of people deserving of the kind of garbage that the Jones family is getting from this small minority of extremists who do nothing? I don’t think anyone is deserving of it, especially in the wake of personal tragedy …no matter what their politics are.
What do you think?