© Robert Sommers 2019

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Man Shoots An Elephant In The Face

It amazes me what some people do for fun. The preceding video, broadcast on NBC, shows a National Rifle Association lobbyist named Tony Makris in Botswana getting his jollies taking down a bull elephant and then celebrating with a little bubbly. I have no problem with people hunting for food but the thought of trophy hunting makes me very ill. I personally like to do my hunting with a camera, and give the magnificent quarry a chance to walk out of the frame unscathed.

Humans are really such horrid animals. In researching this, I read a comment that I liked, wouldn't it be neat if we had a show where the animals could instead hunt defenseless NRA lobbyists? Would pay to see that.

A few weeks ago I read a story about a Rhode Island man talking about his son, a son who had been mauled by a grizzly bear. I decided to take a closer look at the story.

Rhode Island man says it's a miracle his son survived a grizzly mauling in Alaska

    Article by: RACHEL D'ORO , Associated Press
    Updated: September 11, 2013 - 3:05 PM
ANCHORAGE, Alaska — The father of a Rhode Island man who was mauled by a grizzly bear in Alaska said Wednesday it's a miracle that his son is alive after suffering bites to his head and leg.
John O. Matson Jr. of Charlestown, R.I., was listed in fair condition Wednesday at an Anchorage hospital.
"He's got a hell of a headache," said his father, John O. Matson Sr. of Hopkinton, R. I., adding that his 46-year-old son was recuperating after head surgery. "His spirits are great."
The younger Matson was attacked by the bear Monday during a guided bear hunt near Beaver Mountain, about 40 miles southwest of the interior town of McGrath. Bad weather prevented rescuers from quickly reaching Matson's party of three. Matson was finally rescued from the remote spot on Tuesday.
Matson's father credits the two other hunters, also from Rhode Island, with saving his son. The guide, Steve Persson of Charlestown, and another man the father wouldn't identify were packing to leave the hunting camp. They planned to visit their wounded friend later at Providence Alaska Medical Center.
"He's very grateful to his friends," the elder Matson said.
His son, a construction contractor, does not want to speak with reporters about his ordeal, but he does want people to know he's OK, the father said.
Matson Jr. was attacked about 90 minutes after first wounding the bear.
Alaska State Troopers spokeswoman Megan Peters said the hunters had initially seen the bear feeding on berries. They were about a mile away and approached the animal for the first time.
Matson shot at the bear and saw it roll into bushes, Peters said. The grizzly ran off into heavier brush after it flailed about in the brush for a while.
Peters said the hunters waited about 90 minutes, then went after the bear again in some thickets. That's where Matson was attacked. The two others were a short distance away, and the guide heard Matson scream and fire his weapon.
The grizzly ran off after Matson's friends fired shots at the animal. The three men then headed back to their camp about a mile away.
The others used clothing to wrap Matson's profusely bleeding head and took care of him the best they could, according to Peters.
"They kept him awake all night talking to him," she said.
Bad weather prevented a flight from reaching the injured hunter on Monday. On Tuesday morning, the Alaska Rescue Coordination Center sent an Alaska Air National Guard team to the area in a Pave Hawk helicopter. Rescuers initially couldn't find the hunters because of bad weather and their inability to make contact with the men. They had to halt the search for a while so they could refuel in McGrath before resuming the search.
They found the hunters early that afternoon. But because of the terrain and low visibility, the team was dropped off in a different location and then had to hike in to the injured hunter, the Guard said.
Matson was first flown to McGrath and from there a LifeMed Alaska flight transported him 225 miles southeast to the Anchorage hospital.
"I'm sure he's got one heck of a story. He'll have awesome scars to go with it," Peters said. "He's certainly lucky."
Let me get this straight. A guy finds a bear in his native habitat minding his own business eating berries, shoots it and then heads into a thicket to find it. The bear sees him and carves the guy up. Why do I find myself rooting for the bear? What is sporting about taking on a basically defenseless, clearly outgunned mammal from a safe distance with a large caliber weapon? What kind of human being finds pleasure in the undertaking? And I am supposed to feel sorry for this guy or consider his survival an act of providence?

Here in California there is a brouhaha going on over attempts to ban lead ammunition. Opponents of lead bullets point to the problems people and wildlife have in ingesting lead particles left in game. Hunting advocates made two ludicrous points in the Union Tribune article I read the day before yesterday, one, that we should only be concerned if an entire animal species population was jeopardized, e.g. California condors, as opposed to individual animals and two, we shouldn't be concerned because overall habitat loss was a greater threat to the species than lead ingestion. Simply ridiculous.


Anonymous said...

Robert...Thank you for this. It is painful and disgusting and I will spread it far and wide with a call to protest in whatever way one wants. So vivid........sometimes it is hard to get a handle on this behavior......not now thanks to you.

Jeff N. said...

I grew up in a hunting culture, though it was small game and historically for food - turkeys, deer, rabbits, etc. After my teen years and after leaving the South, I also left this activity behind. We learn and evolve...

I've never understood the mentality behind big game hunting. It's pure ego, and I'd say sociopathic - just generally evil. In the modern world, there's no possible justification for a person intentionally destroying what remains of the great beasts of the world

Anonymous said...

NBC Sports Host Who Shot Elephant In Face Compares His Critics To Hitler.


Anonymous said...

Just view the video as a Democrat shooting a Republican who opposes ObamaCare.

Thomas G Johnson said...

Absolutely pathetic! This jerk and any cowards like him that take pleasure in basically murdering these creatures deserve the mauling he received. Better yet, he should suffer what the poor creature that he tried to off received - death. The world would then be rid of another asshole who desperately needs to vanish. Boycott the businesses of these scumbags at the very least...