I am over it. The ridicule of women hunters harvesting exotic animals overseas is completely out of control.
The number of female hunters, according to statistics, has increased considerably just in the last five years. Statistically men still account for the highest number of hunters in America, but women slowly are gaining speed.
According to an article from National Geographic published in November of last year, the percentage of women who hunt has increased 25 percent from 2006 to 2011. It may not sound like much, but today we - as I am a statistic, too - account for 11 percent of U.S. hunters.
Just in the last year at least two women hunters - the most recent of whom is a teenager - have been attacked by animal rights groups that lack knowledge and by what I will call overzealous "activists" for taking "exotic" animals.
I gather from these people that women are not supposed to participate in these types of hunts, but men are more than welcome to - and are not subject to having their names and actions plastered all over social media and the Internet by a bunch of people who have no idea what really is going on.
What comes from hunting these exotic creatures in foreign countries, like the "teenage huntress" was doing, most often is conservation. These exotic animals are being harvested every day. Whether you agree with it or not, it oftentimes is done inside a fenced in area, or preserve as it often is called. Animals there are able to roam about among thousands of acres (most times).
Now, the subject of hunting inside fences could go south quick - and we could start arguing ethics - but that isn't what this column is about.
Animals on these preserves live in a somewhat controlled environment and hunts allow for population checks, making sure animals living in these areas aren't diseased and dying slow horrible deaths.
If outside a preserve, hunting controls animal population sometimes needs thinned due to disease, inter-breeding, avoiding human-animal interaction and really keeping the check on a species that could run rampant and out of control.
To add what happens after an animal that is harvested in some of these overseas countries is truly charitable. Many preserves or outfitters take the meat to feed the less fortunate people living there.
Not to mention, hunters in general harvest food to put on their families tables. A natural food that hasn't been touched by chemicals and mutated and changed.
The most recent example of this ridicule of women hunters is the "terrible evil blonde killing teenager" who has been seen with her exotic harvests on the inter-web, namely the mess of social media.
These "petitioning people" have gone as far as to cry in the name of nature to bring down any photo of her "smiling" while sitting next to her harvested game that has found its way online.
Also, soulless cowards have created threatening pages with themes of "Kill So-and-So" spewing out countless bullying and sometimes disturbing posts against this person.
As a matter of fact here in Pennsylvania, right here in our area, during last year's rifle deer season, a young women was attacked by a black bear while out on a drive with her family.
A certain animal group sent nasty and very unprofessional social media messages, slammed her actions on TV news stations, basically telling her she got what deserved - a visit to the hospital with some major injuries - and even going as far as saying she may deserve worse.
Wow, stay classy people. I mean, really!
Weirdly, as I see cases and cases like this popping up more often - not about hunting animals in general, but about women hunting animals - I can't shake the feeling that most of this ridicule comes from other women.
I makes me think of the saying, "I am woman, hear me roar"?
I am over that saying. I appreciate what it meant for women in the '70s when it represented women empowerment and the liberation movement. I credit those women then for allowing me to be able to do the things I do today, and hunting is one of them. Even though even then, I still would have been able to do it without any activist telling me, "It was my right."
It always has been that way. Perhaps I am young and just don't understand. I "didn't know what it was like back then." Well, you created me - this strong woman that is sick and tired of ridicule from other women.
Anyway, are you the "fems" who want all women to be equal? So if this girl wants to go out and kill a lion, and its done ethically let her.
Here is what I am asking. Leave women alone. Really, other women, leave each other alone. Stop picking on and bullying women who think outside of the box.
Now that you all exercised your First Amendment right, so did I.