Sunday soapbox

Sunday’s soapbox is yours to use as you will – within the bounds of decency and absence of defamation. You’re welcome to look back or forward, discuss issues of the moment, to pontificate, ponder or point us to something of interest, to educate, elucidate or entertain, amuse, bemuse or simply muse, but not abuse.'s photo.

The words of the tonuge should have three gate keepers: Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary?

2 Responses to Sunday soapbox

  1. Mr E says:

    Now days everyone has an opinion, and social media, and blogs seem to encourage expression of it. I enjoy hearing many opinions, and considering others point of view, but there are times I get frustrated at how baseless some strong views can be.

    Last week doctors came out publically pressuring laws against quad bikes and kids. This after considering a report on a survey of quad bike injuries. There was no consulting the general populace of quad bike users, no consideration of the negative impacts of such laws and little perspective in relation to other injuries. The truth is, if we dictated laws on injuries only, life would be illegal, because living has risks.
    I’m not for or against such laws, I simply believe that such laws should be based on thorough consideration rather than scant detail. Calls for an industry wide review are better than snap reactions. I think doctors are silly when they do such things.

    Similarly we see calls for laws high viz when hunting all over the web, after another prosecution when a father shot his son in Stewart Island. Previous Southland incidents included a man shot in the longwoods who was wearing high viz gear shot by gun safety advocate. A man who used to publically promote the message, identify your target.
    On stuff, there are currently 42 comments on this issue, largely supporting high viz laws. Yet in Virginia, where such a laws exist, hunter fatalities have not changed, and high viz has been considered as having an insignificant affect.
    Here the message of identifying the target does not appear to be working. For many cases that simply seems because perpetrators consider they have identified suitably. Hunters need to learn how to identify correctly. I’ve read articles by experts who have studied, how people misidentify. Most often features of the head like the eyes, ears and nose shape, have not been identified. The advice was to indentify all of the above and natural movement. I think it wise advice and suspect education of such principles could help a lot. This boring old repeat “identify your target” fails. A simple catchy phrase around ears eye and nose could make a big difference

    These law change calls by pseudo experts, arm chair advocates and couch warriors annoy me at times. They’re often based on little fact or experience and I think recognised as such.

  2. TraceyS says:

    Why is it so hard for hunting parties to just stay together? This seems common sense to me. When we let hunters onto our property it is one party at a time and I would be appalled if they didn’t stick together when actively hunting. The risks of not doing so seem obvious.

    Hunting is not just about killing furry animals and competing to shoot the heaviest etc, it’s also about doing manly sorts of things together. I am not a hunter myself but it is in the blood so to speak. I did sometimes go out hunting with Dad as a kid and the hunters never separated. Nowadays I might like to go hunting, but usually get the message that it’s boys only, and I respect that they need their together time.

    If I’m one-day allowed to join the men on a hunting trip I would not feel safe while hunting alone (or in a small group) in the dark knowing that companions with guns looking for something to shoot are in the vicinity. Maybe some people are too trusting and don’t think their mates would ever slip up, but unfortunately they do, and it occurs too often.

    The Stewart Island case was so very tragic. To have shot his son from just 20m away. It was obviously unintentional so the only way to prevent this happening with any certainty would have been if both hunters had left together – and hunted together.

    I don’t think new laws would change anything. But maybe something could be included in a Code of Practice for landowners who allow hunting. That would encourage landowners to issue rules for hunting trips that require parties to hunt together. If a party splits up or one (or a few) persons breaks away then that should be considered to be multiple parties hunting the same area.

    “The truth is, if we dictated laws on injuries only, life would be illegal, because living has risks.”

    I tend to agree with that tenet but is anyone suggesting the activity itself should be illegal?

    More of a concern, from my point of view, is the number of kids who get run over in the driveways of homes. We can’t ban cars and driveways or even do much to regulate how people use them. There needs to be another answer. To me it’s about looking out for your friends and loved ones – like a hawk. The consequences of not doing everything possible within your power to care and protect are not worth considering.

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