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Sport Videos and Death

Blog by: Lloyd Tackitt , TX 1/16/2018
I am going to admit to an odd personality quirk.  You may have it too, I don't know.  Maybe I'm the only one. But here goes.  It's about filming the killing of fish or game.

A few days ago I was bored and watching a fly fishing for beginner's film on television.  The fly fishing instructor was British which made it a bit more interesting because I couldn't get the subtitles to work and his accent made it a challenge to follow, kind of fun though.  He caught a nice rainbow out of a stocked pond and then took this weighted tube thing out of his vest and whacked it between the eyes three times to kill it.  That I did not expect.

I have killed more fish than I could possibly remember or count.  I've killed them in far less humane ways than he did.  But for some reason, seeing that on film, it made me cringe a bit.  No I'm not suddenly a born again tree hugging animal rights activist greenie weirdo.  I'll be killing more fish in the future, and without much thought and with zero regret.  Even though I C&R 99% of the time, I still take some home to eat now and then.  

Over the years I've noticed the same thing with hunting videos.  

First thing I don't like about hunting videos is the whispering.  I freaking hate that whispering, it gets right on my nerves and makes me change the channel as fast as I can.  Sorry - that had nothing to do with this, it just slipped out.  

I have killed more rabbits, squirrels, skunks, possums, armadillos, raccoons, deer, birds, and other game and varmint animals than I could possibly remember.  No doubt I will kill some again in the future on some occasions.  I'm also quite aware that when I buy meat in the market I'm just paying someone else to do the killing for me; as a matter of convenience, not out of squeamishness.

But when I see the hunter shoot a deer/elk/moose or whatever it is he is shooting that day, I cringe a little just like with the fish video.  

In my mind there must be something wrong with filming the killing of fish or game.  Almost like it is a form of disrespect to kill something to make a film - and really that doesn't make much sense, does it?  There's nothing wrong with killing fish or game, there's something wrong with filming it, at least in my mind. I have avoided watching those kinds of film for a long time now.  I've been trying to figure out what it is that bothers me about it for many years too.  The guy whacking those fish, that just came out of nowhere; I've grown used to the C&R in fishing films and didn't expect it, and it kind of brought the whole question back into focus again.

What is it with this - I can kill fish or game without hesitation, I can be there when someone else kills and I'm not bothered in the least, lord knows I've had my arms covered in blood to my elbows more than a few hundred times when cleaning a kill - but filming it seems oddly wrong to me, and I don't really understand why it would.  In person, no problem - on film, something ain't right.

Like I said, probably just me...but then I think that if this bothers me - and I'm a red of tooth and claw kind of guy - then what do those people that don't hunt or fish think when they see it?  

Blog content © Lloyd Tackitt
Blog Comments
skiman, 1/17/2018 8:53:57 PM
Maybe it’s not so much the killing, but the “gloating” into the camera after the kill that gets to you. I know that’s the part that bugs me to no end! Sure you’ve just harvested a nice fish/animal, and yeah, you should be proud. Putting your rifle or bow on the rack, or holding a fish in a manner that only shows how superior you are are the parts of the experience I view that tightens my jaw. Most often, these films promote the outfitters. The hunt itself...not so much. I have never experienced a guided hunt or fishing trip, and maybe I should sometime. Perhaps my feelings would change. Yet, at my age, any change would be difficult.
Dave Mauldin, 1/19/2018 9:12:35 PM
Lloyd, I feel exactly the same way, and also don't know why. Even seeing a dead animal on the road turns my stomach.... I wasn't like that when I was a kid. Maybe we have more respect for life and wildlife when we get older.