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Anti-Hunting Sentiment Reaches Fever Pitch in California Legislature

Friday, March 2, 2012

In the sort of extremist hysteria one would only think possible in a PETA or HSUS propaganda film, dozens of anti-hunting members of the California Senate and Assembly are calling for the removal of Dan Richards as President of the California Fish and Game Commission.  Are these calls for his removal sparked by accusations of malfeasance in public office or the commission of a crime?  No!  They have been inspired by the fact that Richards chose to LEGALLY hunt a mountain lion in Idaho just like thousands of ethical, law-abiding hunter-conservationists have done before him.

Apparently oblivious to the concept of federalism, those calling for his removal claim that he should not go to another state and engage in an activity that is legal there, but not in California.  The real problem, of course, is that the activity in question is hunting.  Those demanding his removal are the same people who most often claim that tolerance is essential in government.  The reality is that they are “tolerant” only of the beliefs and activities with which they agree. 

The extremist organizations such as HSUS started the controversy associated with Mr. Richards engaging in a legal hunt because they saw it as an opportunity to rid the Commission of a life-long hunter who opposes their agenda to ultimately ban all hunting in California and, eventually, America.  It was HSUS CEO Wayne Pacelle who said, We are going to use the ballot box and the democratic process to stop all hunting in the United States ... We will take it species by species until all hunting is stopped in California. Then we will take it state by state.

The state senators and Assembly members demanding Richards’ removal dream of a Commission that is dominated by non-hunters who share the radical philosophy of HSUS and PETA.  The truth is that hunters are needed on the Commission in order to benefit conservation and wildlife management.  They are the ones who truly understand the wildly successful North American Wildlife Conservation Model and the fact that hunters pay the way for conservation in California and throughout the country.  In fact, most fish and game departments across the country get the lion’s share of their funding from sportsmen.

Californians must act TODAY to stop this injustice!  Please contact your state Senator and Assembly Member and request that he or she oppose any effort to remove Dan Richards from office.  Your contact is critical because a vote to remove Dan Richards by the California Legislature is all that’s needed to allow the minority of radicals to prevail in their quest.  If they are allowed to succeed, it will have long-term negative consequences for all of California’s hunters and wildlife.

For contact information or for help identifying your state Senator, please click here.  For contact information or for help identifying your state Assembly Member, please click here.

It is also critical to contact the following individuals to express your support for Commissioner Dan Richards.

Governor Jerry Brown
State Capitol, Suite 1173
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: (916) 445-2841
Fax: (916) 558-3160
Email web form:  http://govnews.ca.gov/gov39mail/mail.php
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Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom
State Capitol, Suite 1114
Sacramento, CA 95814
Email web form:  http://www.ltg.ca.gov/m_contact.asp
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California Fish and Game Commission
P.O. Box 944209
Sacramento, CA 94244-2090
Phone: (916) 653-4899
Fax: (916) 653-5040
Email:  fgc@fgc.ca.gov
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If you are able, please plan to attend the Fish & Game Commission Meeting on March 7 in Riverside and voice your support of Commissioner Richards.  Tell them that since he did nothing wrong, removing him would be unfair. Details of the next meeting can be found at:  http://www.fgc.ca.gov/meetings/2012/030712agd.pdf

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.