Anti’s Ask Wisconsin Judge to Ignore the Law

On December 5th, the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation along with its partners in the case (Safari Club International, Wisconsin Bear Hunters Association, and United Sportsmen of Wisconsin) filed our final arguments in the Wisconsin lawsuit seeking to ban hunting wolves using dogs.

You can read much more background information about the case here and here.

We made several arguments why Judge Anderson should dismiss the case and allow wolf hunting with dogs to move forward.  But here’s the best one – Wisconsin law does not permit the Department of Natural Resources to create the unreasonable restrictions on hunting wolves using dogs that the anti-wolf hunting groups want.  Here’s why:

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Antis Claim Hunters Use Dogs As Wolf Bait

Earlier this month, the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation reported on an anti-hunting lawsuit aimed at stopping Wisconsin’s wolf hunt.  The lawsuit, filed by a coalition of Wisconsin humane societies and several individuals, against the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR), claims that the use of dogs to hunt wolves violates the state’s animal cruelty laws and seeks to block the issuance of all wolf hunting licenses.  Despite the fact that the State’s animal cruelty laws do not apply to hunting, the groups claim that hunting wolves using dogs will result in dog fighting and that it violates the animal cruelty law.

Apparently worried that their case could be thrown out, the anti-hunting groups have filed an amended complaint with some new allegations about wolf hunters and hunting.  The claims are so outrageous that I’m not sure whether sportsmen should be furious or just laugh.  Here they are:

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Taxpayer Millions Paid to Anti-Hunting Organizations

The U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance has long been concerned over provisions within the Endangered Species Act that anti-hunting groups are using more and more to get large government payouts for filing lawsuits that do not help the recovery of threatened or endangered species.  Many of these lawsuits even threaten to stop hunting, fishing, or trapping.

Documents provided by the U.S. Department of Justice to the House Natural Resources Committee show that our federal government is giving millions of taxpayer dollars to anti-hunting organizations.  Anti-hunting groups like the Center for Biological Diversity, the Humane Society of the United States, Defenders of Wildlife, and the Sierra Club are cashing in – on your dime.

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USDA’s Vegan Days Cancelled

In a July 23rd memo titled “Greening Headquarters Update” the United States Department of Agriculture (“USDA”) encouraged its employees to participate in “Meatless Mondays” where employees would forgo eating any meat on Mondays.

The USDA’s “Meatless Monday” memo (see page 3) reads like it could have come straight from an animal rights organization’s website.  Here are some quotes:

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Federal Dog Rule Should Worry Sportsmen

If you hunt with dogs, know someone who hunts with dogs, or might want to own a hunting dog someday, you need to be aware of a focused campaign by animal rights organizations to regulate dog owners—and dog breeders—out of existence.

The animal rights folks’ idea is simple – bury sporting dog and hobby breeders under a mountain of unnecessary and costly regulations until none are left.  Why?  Because many of them want to eliminate hunting with dogs, breeding purebred dogs, and all dog breeding.

Generally, we see most of their efforts at the state level.  Already this year, more than 90 bills have been introduced across the country that could be harmful for sporting dog owners.  Recently, the animal rights lobby persuaded the federal government to propose new rules that would expand the number and types of dog owners the federal government regulates.  Here’s why sportsmen should be worried:

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How to Use the Summer Months to Protect Your Hunting Rights

For many sportsmen and women the summer months are spent staring at a calendar and crossing off days until the fall hunting seasons start back up.  Online sportsmen forums are filled with posts titled “100 days till deer season” or “Only 60 more days till the dove opener” and posts on Facebook or Twitter by your hunting friends often read “Going out to shoot the bow, is it November yet?”

Although the summer can be a dull time for sportsmen it is an excellent opportunity for sportsmen to work to protect their hunting rights.  Here are a few easy things you can do to help protect your hunting rights.

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Public Lands Are Essential for the Future of Hunting (and What You Can Do to Protect Them)

Over the past few months, the sportsmen’s community has been abuzz over the Sportsmen’s Heritage Act of 2012.  Since being passed by the U.S. House in April, the U.S. Senate has been working on its own version of this pro-sportsman legislation.

Senators Jon Tester (D-MT) and John Thune (R-SD) have complied a Senate version of the Sportsmen’s Heritage Act which includes a host of pro-sportsmen bills as an amendment to the 2012 Farm Bill.  The amendment is packed full of great things for sportsmen including critical legislation clarifying that the U.S. EPA doesn’t have that authority under the Toxic Substances Control Act to ban lead ammunition and fishing tackle.  Despite the fact the EPA has stated twice that it doesn’t have this authority, the Center for Biological Diversity and other anti-hunting groups recently filed another lawsuit seeking to force an EPA ban on traditional ammunition.

The House passed version of the bill included one landmark provision that so far isn’t included in the Senate package.  This provision stated that lands managed by the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management are deemed open for hunting, fishing, and recreational shooting unless closed.

Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) will be offering a separate amendment to include this language with the rest of the Sportsmen’s Heritage Act in the Senate.  If the Murkowski amendment is added to this already great bill it would be the icing on the cake for sportsmen.

The Murkowski amendment would be a real game-changer for protecting hunting, fishing, and recreational shooting on public lands, here’s why:

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