As a generalization, I don’t watch hunting or fishing shows on television. Sometimes I will get sucked in by the beautiful scenery of a western elk hunt while I am channel surfing, or recognize a stretch of water that I’ve fished myself and watch for a few minutes, but most of these shows are like pornography: They generate a lot of excitement and false expectations.
And like porn, these shows are wildly popular and have a loyal following. There are even a few cable networks that schedule nothing but hunting and fishing programming. Even the infomercials are for the latest gadgets for sportsmen.
Like any other business, the pressure to succeed as a successful television personality can lead some people astray. From the U.S. Attorney’s office in Nebraska:
Jason W. Edney age 35, and Britney J. Edney, age 29, both of Hendersonville, North Carolina, were charged with interstate transportation of an unlawfully killed deer. In Count I, Jason W. Edney is charged with the unlawful possession and transportation in interstate commerce from Nebraska to North Carolina of parts of an adult mule deer buck on or about September 25, 2009. Jason W. Edney did not have a valid Nebraska Hunting License. The maximum penalty for this count charged to Jason W. Edney is 1 year of imprisonment, a fine of $100,000, 1 year of supervised release, and a $100 special assessment. Counts II and III of the indictment charge both Jason W. and Britney J. Edney with unlawful possession and transportation in interstate commerce from Nebraska to South Carolina on or about November 5, 2009, and December 17, 2009, respectively, parts of an adult white-tailed deer buck. Neither Jason W. or Britney J. Edney were in possession of a valid Nebraska Hunting License. The maximum penalty for these counts charged to Jason W. and Britney J. Edney is 1 year of imprisonment, a fine of $100,000, 1 year of supervised release, and a $100 special assessment. Counts IV and V of the indictment charge Jason W. Edney with the sale and purchase of parts of an adult white-tailed deer buck, as well as, unlawful possession and transportation of said deer from Nebraska to North Carolina on or about October 13, 2010, and December 16, 2010, respectively. Jason W. Edney was not in possession of a valid Nebraska Hunting License. The maximum penalty for Counts IV and V charged to Jason W. Edney is 5 years of imprisonment, a fine of $250,000, 3 years of supervised release, and a $100 special assessment.
The married couple from North Carolina was featured on a television show called “Drury Outdoors Dream Season 4” and run a hunting lodge in Nebraska that has been featured on television shows.
I don’t like the commercialization of the outdoors. I’m not talking about legitimate hunting and fishing guides or marina operators and outfitter shops. I’m talking about television shows that reduce the noble pursuits of fish and game to nothing more than a “reality show” or a mega-bucks fishing tournament that degrades the sport.
The next time you find yourself tempted to watch one of these shows, do yourself a favor a get outside. Start making your own memories.