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                “HUNTING PROVIDES MANY

                POSITIVE THINGS”

                 EDITOR’S NOTE: Each year, the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife
               Conservation and Oklahoma Station Chapter Safari Club International
               join to sponsor a creative writing competition for Oklahoma middle and
               high school students. A boy and a girl from two age divisions are selected
               winners. Students were required to write essays using the theme “Hunt-
               ing: Sharing the Heritage” or “Archery: What I Like About Archery in
               the Schools and Bowhunting.” Winners in the age 15-17 category receive
               a guided antelope hunt in the Texas Panhandle, and winners in the 11-14
               age category receive a hunting trip at the Chain Ranch and a scholarship
               to the Outdoor Texas Camp. In this issue, “Outdoor Oklahoma” honors
               senior category male winner Jackson Fifer, 16, from Jenks High School.

               HUNTING:                                       hunting often develops a great appreciation and respect
                                                              for nature, which can only lead to positive possibilities.
               SHARING                                        Including securing a future for America’s wildlife and
               THE                                            wilderness, in a ever modernizing world. If hunting can
                                                              overcome the stigma given by the media and continue to be
               HERITAGE                                       passed down, the future of hunting will be bright.
                                                                In my life I have learned several key lessons that have
               By Jackson Fifer                               become ingrained in me, all through hunting. Mainly
                 Since the dawn of man,                       composed of four lessons, being; responsibility, ethics,
               hunting has existed and                        hard work, and respect. Hunting, as a whole, is all about
               has provided a method of                       respect for nature, animals, and people who surround you.
               survival. Today while many people do not rely on hunting  Hard work and dedication are essential in prep for a great
               as a sole source of food, hunting is still very present in  hunting season. Then the actual act of hunting requires
               society after being passed down from generation to gener-  these four lessons to be fully understood, you must be able
               ation. Hunting can influence and change the lives of people  to ethically take an animal’s life, responsibly handle the
               everywhere. Mainly through important lessons taught,  animal, show respect for the animal, and do the necessary
               conservation, and developing respect for nature.  hard work after the hunt. If, as a community, we continue
                 In today’s society, hunting is not always seen as very  to pass down hunting, the next generation will also learn
               popular and is often criticized publicly. This should not  these key lessons. Thus improving the standards for the
               be the case as hunting provides many positive things. For  next generation and those they surround.
               starters hunters are the greatest conservationists and take   Hunters, as a whole, must continue to pass hunting down
               great pride in this. Hunters accomplish this through an  as tradition to the next generation. Whether the passion
               excise tax on hunting gear, licenses, Federal Duck Stamps,  for hunting is; Deer, Ducks, Turkey, Dove, or any other
               and other various fees and taxes. In total hunters raise on  great hunt. Not only to pass down to develop a respect
               average $1.6 billion yearly for conservation and this money  for nature in the next generation, honor the tradition, or
               all goes towards protecting the beauty that hunters revere.  spread conservation. But to pass down the ethics, respect,
               Next, as all involved with hunting know, there is nothing  hard work, and responsibility that comes right along with
               morally corrupt with hunting. Hunting should be spread  hunting. Now, let’s share our great heritage of hunting and
               far and wide, not condemned or looked down upon. Lastly,  enjoy the outdoors!

          July/August 2018                                                                                  7
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