Love to hunt? Deer, small game, waterfowl, predators?

Hell, man, enjoy going to the Garden State Expo to see the Annual Deer Classic with the biggest deer mounts taken in the Garden State the previous year, or have a big buck contest at your hunting club?

These will all come to an end should Assembly Bill A-1365 get out of committee this coming Monday, June 14 and make it to Governor Murphy’s desk. The guv is an avowed anti-hunter and anti-trapper and is no friend of fishing, this glaringly evident by his failure to appoint a representative to the Greenwood Lake Commission which is is cooperative between New York and New Jersey which share the state border lake. Greenwood is one of the most popular fishing waters for Jersey bass, walleye and muskie anglers, but access is all but gone because of private ownership of the shoreline and marinas. Also, Murphy has failed to fill several vacancies on the NJ Marine Fisheries Council which serves the recreational fishing public. (More about this can be found in the NJ/Delaware Bay edition of The Fisherman Magazine’s June 7 “Editor’s Log” by managing editor Jim Hutchinson.)

In effect, what the insidious, yet clever wording of A-1365 will do is make it a criminal
offense to “Harass or take covered wildlife at a competitive event. It shall be unlawful for
any person to organize, sponsor, promote, conduct or participate in a competitive event at which the participants harass or take covered wildlife.”

Although “wildlife” and “fish” are separate, you can bet your best striper setup that fishing tournaments, even friendly club competitions, will be next on the agenda.

“This (A-1365) would be the first nail in the coffin to ban hunting and trapping in the state,” says New Jersey Outdoor Alliance board member Ed Markowski

There are four critical members on the committee who could quash this bill. These are John Armato (D-2; 609-382-5421), Adam Taliaferro (D-3; 856-251-9801), Ron Dancer
(R-12; 609-758-0205), and Parker Space (973-300-0200).

Put a call in to these legislators today to urge they kill what is the eventual plan to make hunting, trapping and, in this corner’s longer view, fishing, all criminal acts.

Drastic and dramatic call to action on very short notice? Yep, because we’ve witnessed
what can happen when the anti groups, and well-organized they are, succeed.

In the words of the late conservative talk radio show pioneer Bob Grant, “Your influence counts. Use it!”

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