Mountain lion madness is loose in the Golden Bear state.
If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to live under the jurisdiction of an official government religion, check out the State Legislature in laid-back, tolerant California.
According to a recent article by Marisa Lagos in the San Francisco Chronicle, “…40 lawmakers and Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom” called for the resignation of California Fish and Game Commission President Daniel Richards, saying “his actions showed he is not fit to lead the commission… because he does not represent Californians’ belief that mountain lions should not be hunted.”
In a March 3 article in the Washington Post National on-line newspaper, Newsom questioned the wisdom of having a hunter as the head of an agency responsible for natural resources. Never mind that hunters largely fund the Fish & Game Department through license dollars and excise taxes paid on firearms and ammunition.
The impetus behind this “political correctness” attack came after Richards, on his own time, journeyed to Idaho to indulge in a legal, ethical, fair chase hunt for a free-ranging Idaho mountain lion. He killed a large male lion, ate some of its flesh while still in Idaho and, one assumes, preserved its skull and hide. Predictably, Californian animal rightists went ballistic and began calling for his ouster.
One expects such attacks from PETA, HSUS and similar radical anti-hunting factions. What’s deeply disturbing here is that elected officials in California now think they have the power to dictate what other citizens may do or to make California laws applicable in other states.
Let us suppose that Richards had gone to North Dakota and smoked a cigarette in a small-town restaurant. Would not the California Legislature then need to ask for his resignation because smoking is not legal in California restaurants?
The creeping Big Brother sentiment inherent in this situation is just the latest in a long line of insidious infringements on personal freedom that should frighten every hunter, fisherman, farmer, dog owner, carnivore, and freedom loving citizen of the United States. It more than hints at how fragile our liberties have become in the face of political correctness and the morals police. It dramatizes how quickly and brazenly religious fanatics—through intimidation, harassment, threats, and tyranny of the masses—are willing to deny any and all “non-believers” their rights “… he does not represent Californian’s beliefs.”
The State will now dictate what we are to believe? Didn’t a certain number of pilgrims once sail away from England because they did not represent that government’s beliefs and were being persecuted because of it? Did not a few rabble-rousers named Washington, Franklin, Adams, Jefferson, and others go to war because they did not want to represent King George’s beliefs? Did they not establish a new nation, conceived in liberty? Or were they dedicated to the proposition that all men shall bow to the tyranny of state sanctioned “beliefs?”
I don’t know what is more appalling about this situation: That freely elected state government legislators imagine they have the right to control others, or that voters are willing to let them.
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