By Jason Reid
One could argue that the killing of an animal isn’t what makes them feel alive. The act itself broken down and separated from the entire experience is understood by hunters as a necessary part of the whole. What makes us feel alive is experiencing the full circle of life. Yes, this is intense and elicits emotions difficult to express even through the lens of film.
Reflecting on the intensity of the situation and seeing the great lengths our society goes in order to become disconnected from our food is astonishing. Sure, some people want to insulate themselves from this experience and understanding, which is totally fine, everyone has the right to make that choice. While we have the choice to make for ourselves, we are attacked for making this choice but when posed with the all difficult question about their children and taking an animal, it was evident the natural intuition for hunting still runs strong.
In a world where we are easily offended and go to great lengths to disconnect ourselves, is it ok for a child to witness the killing of an animal or to pull the trigger themselves?
Kris, the mother of two young girls and converted hunter by her husband says adamantly, “Yes I do. You have to respect the animals and nature that God created, through the death of an animal you give thanks to God for blessing you and we teach this gratefulness and respect for creation to our daughters even though both are under the age of ten.” Tiffany added, “My kids know hard work is a part of the process. From stand placement through the proper packaging and care of the meat. My hope is through this training, my son and daughter will grow into young men and women who respect and enjoy that which God has put on this earth for us.
Experiencing the kill of an animal is an intense moment of life. Peg says, “If you teach respect, the killing of an animal shouldn’t be a problem. What kinds of deeper experiences we are keeping from our kids by not letting them experience the wild?”
Diving into the world of hunting can be much like looking over the edge of a cliff to those new to the lifestyle. Making the decision to encourage hunting in your children or even to lace up the boots yourself takes time of reflection and shouldn’t be taken lightly. Seeking council with experienced hunters who can provide insight and answer concerns. Do you wish for your children to have a real connection or disconnection to life? Lindsay says she encourages other parents through the consistent communication of the positive attributes she sees in raised hunters despite how the media portrays hunters. Hunting is connection and when I asked Peg about how she encourages other parents, she stammered, not quite able to put her finger on the right words. Her husband, Dave Sr. spoke up from his place leaning against the porch rail. “It’s pretty simple…… Mom Knows Best.”
About Jason Reid:
Jason Reid is a writer and business professional from upstate New York. After deciding to pursue his dream of becoming an outdoor writer, Jason started a blog from his dorm room at Houghton College, growing it and working hard to earn opportunities. While bowhunting big game is his ultimate passion, Jason welcomes all outdoor challenges which force him to push his limits. Jason’s work can be viewed on his website Pushingthewildlimits.com