Humberto Fontova 4/26/2014

Over 40 years ago, Americans from all walks of life came together to launch “Earth Day.” It was a call to action for the conservation movement.

But well before the first Earth Day, millions of Americans “came together” in a “conservation movement.” The Pittman-Robertson Act (1937) imposed an excise tax of 10 per cent on all hunting gear. Then the Dingell-Johnson act (1950) did the same for fishing gear. The Wallop-Breaux amendment (1984) extended the tax to the fuel for boats. All of this to “protect the environment” and buying and maintaining various forms of wildlife habitat.

To date, hunters and fisherpersons have shelled out over $20 billion “on behalf of the environment.” The National Shooting Sports Foundation found that for every taxpayer dollar for wildlife conservation, hunters and fishermen contribute nine.

Please note: to “preserve nature,” they don’t tax hiking boots, Kayaks, mountain bikes, binoculars or birding Field Guides, but they do tax my shotgun, deer rifle, scope, compound bow, duck decoys, and camo pants.

Ten cents of every dollar I spent on my hunting and fishing toys funds things like habitat for Spotted Owls, Red Cockaded Woodpeckers, Snail darters, Black-Footed Ferrets, California Condors, etc., etc.

This avalanche of tax dollars comes on top of those I fork over for the stacks of licenses, and permits, and stamps I’m required to have before I set a foot afield. And…, all the above is on top of my voluntary dues and assorted donations to such as Ducks Unlimited. According to the National Shooting Sports Foundation such donations total $300 million a year.

You’d think some thanks might be in order. Well, think again. Here’s the Sierra Club’s official position: “Wild animals should not be valued principally in terms of whether they can serve as targets. As members of the family of life, we should respect the moral right of all creatures to exist, to be free of unnecessary predation…”

Anyway, you’re quite welcome Greenies.

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