Ep. 46: Wild Sheep Society - Act Now - Predator HuntingGrizzly bear hunting was banned in BC and now there are efforts in place to ban the wolf hunt. Will it stop there, or is all hunting under attack? Predator hunting, trophy hunting, and “the social licence to operate” is what this episode is all about. Travis speaks with Steve Hamilton and Greg Rensmaag of the Wild Sheep Society of BC and the Talk is Sheep Podcast about this emotionally charged topic and what is the best way to work in harmony with nature and to pragmatically protect our natural resources. https://www.wildsheepsociety.com/actnow/
Travis Bader: [00:00:00] I’m Travis Bader and this is The Silvercore Podcast. Join me as I discuss matters related to hunting, fishing, and outdoor pursuits with the people in businesses that comprise the community. If you’re a new to Silvercore, be sure to check out our website, www.Silvercore.ca where you can learn more about courses, services, and products that we offer as well as how you can join The Silvercore Club, which includes 10 million in North America wide liability insurance, to ensure you are properly covered during your outdoor adventures.
[00:00:43] This episode, The Wild Sheep Society of British Columbia has taken it upon themselves to step up and be the change that they want to see when it comes to protecting hunting rights in BC. They are a small nonprofit organization that it’s carrying a heavy load. And this episode is designed to help them get their message out as well as to involve you, the listener in an effort to crowd source solutions as we move forward.
[00:01:09] A quick reminder to check out the over $6,000 firefighter training package at the Training Division in Texas, that The Silvercore Club is giving away. Check out our website for details. We’re live. Today I’m speaking with Steve Hamilton and Greg Rensmaag of The Wild Sheep Society of BC, as well as The Talk is Sheep Podcast about predator hunting and the social license to hunt. Gentlemen, welcome to The Silvercore Podcast.
Steve Hamilton: [00:01:38] Thanks for having us.
Travis Bader: [00:01:40] So why don’t you to provide a little bit of background on this whole social license to hunt. This is a new thing for me. I been doing some research. I’m learning about social license to operate and what all of that entails. How did this come about?
Steve Hamilton: [00:01:58] Do you want to take this one, Greg to that?
Greg Rensmaag: [00:02:03] Sure. Well, basically social license is exactly what it sounds like. What is socially acceptable in our times? Uh, as we, as we’ve seen, there is a lot of emotionally charged, uh, imagery out there, whether or not it’s regards to hunting, fishing, or just anything in general. We’ve all seen those commercials out there on Christmas, where they’ve got the polar bears and they’re coming into the, the, the have a Coca-Cola with the family and you’re seeing the Sharman bears and they’re advertising toilet paper.
[00:02:37] So they’re essentially. Putting the cute and cuddly on what is a wild animal and their argument around that is that, uh, the, these, these, these animals are sent to you at beings. They have families and they’re, they’re trying to essentially demonize what is it, legal and ethical practice managed by science.And that social license means we need the voting support to, to, to continue what we do. And that’s what they’re going after right now.
Travis Bader: [00:03:13] Got it. So thinking about social license, and I think I’ve told this story before in The Silvercore Podcast, but I can remember a number of years ago and the corporation of Delta at the time before it became a city of Delta went and decided they did not want any other firearms businesses in, in Delta.
[00:03:35] And so they had a big meeting at the town hall and I came in, armed with all my facts and all my stack of papers. And I started, they gave me a forum. I started talking and about, I don’t know, five minutes into it. One of the individuals stands up, says, Travis, hold on a second. Do you have much more of this?
[00:03:55] Like I do. Why he said, well, let me tell ya. I, 100% agree with everything. You’re saying all the facts that you’re spitting out. I agree with 100%, but here’s the thing. If we think that our constituents want us to ban firearms businesses from Delta, then we have to take a look at banning firearms businesses from Delta.
[00:04:16] And I was flabbergasted. I think it was in my, I don’t know it was, uh, late twenties, mid, mid to late twenties. And I never had that level of honesty from a political type. And I had no rebuttal to that. I had none of the stats, none of the numbers made any sense. It was. Do we feel that people may want us to ban the firearms businesses in Delta? And it sounds like the exact same thing that’s happening here.
Steve Hamilton: [00:04:43] That’s exactly what it is. And, uh, what, what people have now realized is that when a politician is elected, they’re essentially their employee, right? So the voters can dictate whether or not they hire or fire. So they do listen to the social license.They do listen to the push and they have acted on it before, which I imagine we’ll get into a bit later with the grizzly bear hunt.
Travis Bader: [00:05:10] That’s right. Yeah, well, we can, we can talk right now. Sure. The, the grizzly bear hunt, they put a moratorium on hunting, grizzly bears in British Columbia. They said ban can’t hunt grizzly bears in British Columbia, but if I’m not mistaken, wasn’t it based on something that happened in Alaska, some sort of social media outcry that happened in Alaska, my right on.
Greg Rensmaag: [00:05:33] There was a, uh, a poor taste video that was out there of, uh, a bear not having the, the quickest.
Steve Hamilton: [00:05:41] Yeah, yeah, yeah. Greg and I admin a couple of, uh, hunting websites. And as soon as that got posted, we both messaged each other and went, Oh, here we go. It, uh, it, it did us no favours. And, uh, yeah, it w this, it, it was used to further in emotional agenda for a scientific argument. Um, and what it all boils down to is that social license as hunters, uh, we, we strive to be the.
[00:06:08] That the quickest, most, most ethical kill for our, our, our, uh, quarry. And when we see something like that, we know, well, number one, it’s what the hell are you doing? Posting that on social media and two it’s. Oh, damn. This is going to be used to further an agenda. So when, when they did close the grizzly bear hunt, it was on, it was on, uh, well, I’ll be straight lies.
[00:06:35] Uh, they originally put out as their platform that they were going to ban the trophy hunt only, and they put it out to public input and said, what that trophy hunt looks like is a meat retention, which every hunter I ever talked to was on board with to put it on par with black bears and remove the hide in the head and which is on part with black bears.
[00:07:00] So, uh, vote, vote goes down. They get in a. The legal hunt for the Leh closes November 30th and all of a sudden, December 17th, uh, 2017, just before the legislature, legislature sat for Christmas, they went, the hunters closed. So they yanked it out completely on us. And that’s what we’re concerned about here with the, uh, ActNow campaign is because they’ve, they’ve got an inch and they’re going to go for the full mile.
Travis Bader: [00:07:32] So could you fill me in on the ActNow Campaign?
Steve Hamilton: [00:07:35] You want to take this Greg?
Greg Rensmaag: [00:07:38] Yeah, definitely. So just right now, there’s organized efforts by multiple groups to try to stop our privilege to hunt the large carnivores and BC and her, uh, specifically named are wolves, cougars and black bears, uh, mountain sheep, and elk have also been listed as trophy animals.
[00:07:57] Is that kinda, that’s how the grizzly bear hunt. So that that’s how the grizzly bear band started was listing it as a trophy hunt. So that puts all of them in jeopardy. Um, we’re just, we’re looking for the hunting community to kind of come together and stand up for science-based wildlife management with us.
Steve Hamilton: [00:08:16] So, yeah. And it’s, as Greg said, it’s about science-based management, no hunter out there, uh, or conservationists wants to see extirpation or extinction of a species at all. If science dictated that a hunt needed to be closed due to numbers, we’d be going hell yeah, we backed that 100% and a former minister of FLNRO when the hunt was closed for the grizzly, uh, Doug Donaldson said it wasn’t about numbers.
[00:08:44] It wasn’t about science. And he admitted that it was populism and the vote saying that is what was closing it. And that’s what we’re up against again. Uh, It’s we, we owe it to wildlife to manage it properly. And where the disconnect a lot of people seem to get, unfortunately is they say, let nature balance itself.
[00:09:06] And they, they forget. And they remove themselves from being a part of nature. We have an impact as human beings, you live in a house, you drive a vehicle, you’ll walk on a road, you ride a bicycle, no matter what, you’re having an impact on nature. And we, we need to, to manage accordingly. And that’s what ActNow is about. It’s not just about hunting. It’s about seeing wildlife managed properly.
Travis Bader: [00:09:34] I was speaking with Shane Mahoney recently, and he’s say, so you know who Shane is? I think he was a keynote speaker at one of your events a couple of years ago, actually. And he says, you know, people will ask me. How can you have these feelings and be a hunter?
[00:09:50] How can you care for the wildlife like this and be a hunter? And he says, it’s not a question of there being a different set of rules for me as there is for the wildlife. That’s the reality is, is I am one of them. That’s right. And the idea of being of us humans being socially removed from this whole, uh, from wildlife in nature, I guess it’s a nice altruistic thought, but it’s not in line with reality.
Steve Hamilton: [00:10:20] And that’s what it’s about. Right. That’s where people forget that.
Travis Bader: [00:10:25] So you guys have a, it’s not a petition. No, but, but it’s a, a form. I filled this out. What would you guys call it?
Steve Hamilton: [00:10:37] Yeah, an organized letter campaign. Okay.
Travis Bader: [00:10:40] And this organized letter campaign can be found on your own website.
Steve Hamilton: [00:10:43] That’s right. Uh, uh, www.wildsheepsociety.com forward slash ActNow we’ve typed that out so many times. It’s probably ingrained in my subconscious and basically it’s, it’s 15 to 20 seconds of your time. You click enter and the website populates for you. You’ve got to enter your name, first name, last name, and your email address and email address. Isn’t for us, it’s for the elected official to be able to respond to you.
[00:11:13] We’ve had a couple of people say that they’re concerned about getting spam emails from us, and that’s not the case. So your first name, last name, uh, your email address. So the elected official can contact you. And then there’s a dropdown where you can put in the email address of your MLA. So no matter who it is, you can put it in there.
[00:11:34] And the cool thing is we’ve made it. So anybody who stands with us that doesn’t necessarily live in British Columbia can have a stance. There’s a not applicable email address. So these emails will still go to a premier Horgan, uh, minister of FLNRO, and a couple others saying we stand with a science-based wildlife management and that, and that’s the key there because it’s, as I said, it’s not just about hunting.
[00:12:03] It’s about anybody who stands with sound wildlife management, and wants to see wildlife and perpetuity. So whether or not you are a, a tourist that comes up from the United States and just love to see a moose on the landscape, or if you’re a wildlife photographer who enjoys seeing wild sheep throughout spences bridge area, you can have a stand in this as well And we need anybody who, uh, who, who wants to see it in perpetuity to sign.
Travis Bader: [00:12:32] So right now, the big hue and cry is around wolves. If I’m not mistaken, PR predominantly about PR predator hunting, but wolves.
Steve Hamilton: [00:12:43] That’s correct. It’s uh, it’s the one that people can grab onto easily because, uh, that they look like your pet dog, right?
[00:12:52] They’re the same family, but you hear about it all the time, right? They’re they’re not is cute. And cuddly is we’d love them to believe. Right? Do I’ve seen dozens of wolves on the landscape and they’re one of the most beautiful animals out there. And completely love and respect them. They are the majestic beings that they’re portrayed to be, but I’m pretty sure anybody out there that, uh, knows the reality, like Greg will back up on this, but what makes a wolf more important or more beautiful on the landscape than say a caribou that we’re watching go extinct in certain population units because of a predation.
[00:13:33] So it’s, they’ve, they’ve escalated wolves up here because of the cute and cuddly factor where I’m guessing. And because it’s a, it’s a, it’s something easy to grab a hold of.
Travis Bader: [00:13:44] Sure. You don’t see the save the spiders campaign, right?
Steve Hamilton: [00:13:47] Oh no. My wife would kill me if I ever backed out.
Travis Bader: [00:13:53] Exactly. So. I understand that this letter writing you’ve guys have made it so easy. Just a couple of minutes, they put their information in and we’ll put links on our website and we’ll put links up on the YouTube channel and through social media, what’s the traction been like?
Greg Rensmaag: [00:14:14] I got, uh, as a 1:00 PM today we’re at, uh, 9,492 letters or people that signed up, which equates to 47,460 letters that have been sent to the different levels of government.
Travis Bader: [00:14:31] Okay. And that’s 9,000 out of 115,000 hunters. Yeah.
Greg Rensmaag: [00:14:36] Pretty, pretty dismal since we started this. What? February 25th at launch.
Steve Hamilton: [00:14:41] Yeah. Yeah. And one of the most concerning things I guess, is that I know I have, and Greg has, and a few others have. Uh, faced pushback by the hunting community themselves saying that they don’t believe we’re under attack and we’ve got direct quotes and people saying, well, we should have to get a trapping licenses to, to hunt predators, or we will never ever lose a black bear hunt.
[00:15:05] And we just go, did you not see the grizzly bear hunt? They’ve got the inch, they’re gonna take the mile and they’re going to chip away. They’re absolutely going to chip away because on some of these pages, I’ve seen quotes from anti, uh, organizations and their members say, uh, nobody will hike for 14 days to get a goat and bring out all 60, 70, 80 pounds of meat.
[00:15:31] So you know where they’re going with that? Goats, goats, and sheep, because they’re trophy. Right. And I could, I could show them a freezer full of bear and deer and you name it. And they’re still going to look for holes to punch in there. And it’s, as you said, hunters love wildlife. We do not want to see it go extinct or, or extirpated in any population unit.And this is about so much more than, than hunting.
Travis Bader: [00:16:01] So is that, do you have a multi-pronged approach, to a rebuttal, to the, uh, attack against see the predator hunting? Or is this a singular prong?
Steve Hamilton: [00:16:16] We’re in phase two right now. Uh, the idea is to, uh, in June, we’re going to take these physical letters and present them to elected officials in Victoria.
[00:16:30] How that’s going to look with COVID restrictions. We’re not sure, but the idea is to take every single letter, print it off and go, hopefully on the back of a forklift and go, this is how many people stood up to say it’s time to listen to the scientists. So, um, Yeah, we do have a multistage, a multi-pronged.
[00:16:51] We started with the online campaign just to kind of get the ball rolling out there. And then we’ve now got ads on a Wild TV and Sportsman Channel to get another market there. Uh, we’ve got a couple other approaches where we’ve got them into a physical letters into mom and pop gun stores. And we’re looking at other ways to reach people that are off of social media and, uh, put, put letters in front of them that they can actually sign themselves.
[00:17:22] And as you said, we’re in phase two, we have a phase three that we’re working on and, uh, yeah, we’re, we’re going continue to, to listen to feedback from, uh, concerned hunters, anglers sport shooters, uh, than anybody who’s got a vested interest in seeing wildlife on the landscape for how they think, uh, We could, uh, potentially approach, uh, other people.
Travis Bader: [00:17:42] Yeah. So when I getting ready to do this podcast, I’ve actually done a fair bit of thinking on the problem and I don’t have a solution, but I thought it would be an interesting endeavour anyways, to discuss different options and perhaps crowd source through the different listeners. And they can say, Hey, you’ve got a point or you’re totally off base, but maybe think about this over here.
[00:18:08] And in thinking about it, it seemed to me that the best approach would be to come up with something that wasn’t secret that was out in the open. And it’s easy for everybody to kind of get behind because I agree with you. I have seen the creep, the creeping legislation. I’ve seen the creep in anything that’s considered to be, um, socially reprehensible.
Greg Rensmaag: [00:18:34] That’s right.
Travis Bader: [00:18:35] I come from the firearms community. And we’ve seen a few generations of socially engineered people come through to equate the firearm with being evil. There’s only see a campaign and say ban Mercedes-Benz because they’re getting all these, these people are getting behind the wheel and, and hurting people when they’ve had a few drinks.
Greg Rensmaag: [00:18:55] Yeah.
Travis Bader: [00:18:56] You, you don’t see a vehicular manslaughter. They don’t turn around and say banned cube vans because it, the inanimate object doesn’t have the social stigma that has been put on to firearms in the, in the, uh, what you guys are dealing with right now, as I look at it, it looks like there is an individual. Chris wrote a paper, was it 2018?
Steve Hamilton: [00:19:24] Yeah, it was a 2018 just after, yeah. After the grizzly bear hunt, uh, that all this really started to gain traction.
Travis Bader: [00:19:35] Okay. But that paper really didn’t see any traction in, Oh, just recently.
Steve Hamilton: [00:19:38] That’s right. Yeah. It’s called social large carnivores and the social license to hunt. It ended up on a, uh, a site and it was sent to me and I went Whoa, and had a real good look at it. And there were some trigger words in there and, uh, I’ll be the first one to say it. He is very intelligent and very good at what he does.
[00:19:58] He’s got a great crowd of people behind him back in him. Uh, you got Kyle Artelle, Paul Paquete and a bunch of the other big wigs that they’ve got some chops with them. And, but the buzzwords I was noticing in there were, were not just the wolfs and black bears that they target and cougars, but they’ve also thrown in there in veiled sort of hints that big horn sheep and elk have trophy value.
[00:20:26] So as we said that death by a thousand cuts, well, if they, if they’ve named five animals and we give them one, are we gonna go that, it, is their argument going to be okay, well, if you give us wolves, we’ll leave the others alone.
[00:20:42] Absolutely not because it’s going to end up being four more and then it’ll be, well, you give us one, we’ll leave the other three. And that’s what we’re being con con uh, uh, proactive about because, uh, hunters for the longest time have flown under the radar and not been proactive. We’ve been pretty reactive.
[00:20:59] Like I know when I lived in the mainland and you, you can probably vouch to this yourself, Travis, when you uh, go out to your vehicle to go to the range. You, you, you look outside to make sure is it okay to walk out with my, uh, firearm in a case you, you check, who’s watching you, for the most part, for the most part. Because I have heard horror stories about people in, in, uh, Yaletown walking to their, from their condo to their vehicle, with their firearms, perfectly legal and getting taken down at gunpoint because somebody saw them, uh, doing something which is perfectly legal that they didn’t understand.
[00:21:38] So hunters grown up hell not too long ago, 30, 35 years ago. It was commonplace to see, uh, in the mainland, a deer strapped to the front of a car. And you’d wave and somebody stopped at a gas station. You’d have pictures with it. Now you do that and you end up on social media as a murderer, right? People want your license plate and you get death threats and we’re, we’re being proactive for, uh, for a change.
[00:22:07] Right. We’re we know there’s no legislation formally right now, but we know the wheels are turning and they’ve got the ear of government. So we’re trying to say, Hey, you know what, it’s our turn to speak up. So yeah, it’s that the paper came out in 2018 and, uh, they’ve sat on it for three years, but we know what’s coming.
[00:22:26] So we’re trying to try to beat them to the punch, so to speak, you know, how many people were really aware of that paper or of Chris in general, prior to this, lots of people were aware, Chris and, uh, his organization. However, I don’t think they were aware. To the extent of influence they’ve had. Uh, yeah, like I said, there he’s been around for awhile.
[00:22:55] He’s a professor at UVIC he’s, uh, with his organization there and yeah, he’s, they, uh, they have some swing, they’ve got some chops with them, but yeah, the lots knew who he was, but I don’t think they understood the influence that they’ve had.
Travis Bader: [00:23:13] Now, I don’t know if you know who Dan Fritter is. He’s the owner of Calibre Magazine and was talking with him about some issues on the firearm side. And he says, I’m not even going to bother responding. Everyone says, Dan, how come, how come you don’t write about it in your magazine? Why don’t you put this up on, on Facebook or on your website? He says, look at them, they have 300 followers. I have whatever, X number, large number more. Why am I going to elevate their profile by shining more light on them and allowing them to use my platform in order to get further?
Greg Rensmaag: [00:23:52] That’s right.
Travis Bader: [00:23:53] I think that perhaps that is part of the tactic that’s currently being played right now by, Chris, and the, in the organization there and I haven’t been using his last name and I haven’t gotten anyone in the organization. That’s up to you guys if you’d like to, but I believe that’s part of the tactic is to try and piggyback.
Steve Hamilton: [00:24:13] Oh, absolutely. It is. They’ve got one hell of a following and I’m doing the same thing you are. We’re not elevating them if anybody who knows they know by listening. Um, but yeah, they’ve, they’ve got one hell of a following on social media. Uh, you only have to look at a couple of their petitions. There’s one. What was it? Three weeks ago Greg had had, it was just about, it was just strictly centered around wolves 500 and.
Greg Rensmaag: [00:24:36] Yeah, it was like 504 or 503,000 already.
Steve Hamilton: [00:24:39] Yeah. Yeah. And that’s just one of them.
Greg Rensmaag: [00:24:42] And their Cougar one was what? 50 or 30 shooting for 50.
Travis Bader: [00:24:47] Yeah. And that was on a, uh, just a social media post.
Steve Hamilton: [00:24:50] Just a social media post. Right. So they’ve, they’ve got traction and we’re trying to like, like I said, Greg and I admin a bunch of different pages. We got between us, probably 200,000 people we admin. And whenever we post anything like this, we try to be strategic and cross out where it’s from. Who’s posting it and we always make a disclaimer.
[00:25:12] Don’t engage them. Don’t give them any traction, but this is what they’re doing because hunters it’s, it’s, it’s a emotive, right. It really, really is emotive and are privilege to hunt is under attack. And a lot of people don’t take too well to that. So they will use screenshots. Uh, they will they’ll bait you they’re really, really good at it.
[00:25:38] A couple of years ago, I did, uh, before they, before they, uh, uh, went full on with the grizzly bear hunt ban, I did a, uh, interview for, I believe it was CBC and, uh, the province, just talking about grizzly hunting and I ended up with death threats. My family ended up with death threats. And it was, if the shoe was on the other foot. Imagine if a firearms owner did that, Travis, if a firearms owner went to somebody and said, we’re going to kill you type thing. How would that be taken by the general public?
Greg Rensmaag: [00:26:13] You’d be front and center of every news network.
Steve Hamilton: [00:26:16] Exactly.
Travis Bader: [00:26:16] Got it.
Steve Hamilton: [00:26:17] Exactly.
Travis Bader: [00:26:18] So, and this organization, they did kind of talk about the caribou numbers. Didn’t they? And essentially didn’t they say, who cares?
Steve Hamilton: [00:26:26] They did. They did great point. I’m glad you brought that up because they, they did say essentially who cares, they’re gone. Just leave them alone, let them go. They don’t, they’re not going to make it, let them go. And as I said, why are wolves more important than the caribou, right? I, I don’t get that. As a conservationist, you want to see them all.
Travis Bader: [00:26:52] So, as I spent some time trying to think about this and I’m looking at it, I’m trying to decompile it. And I think you guys, well, I’m fairly certain you, your organization and you guys are correct in so much as saying, they’re looking at this, but they have an ulterior motive, they’d like to go further.
[00:27:11] And when you talk about some veiled language, it doesn’t sound very veiled to me, it’s pretty plainly written. And I think anybody with a benefit of hindsight would turn around and look at it and say, yeah, they’re talking about it back in 2018. They’re talking about it further. So essentially it sounds like hunters have been trying to fight an emotional ban and emotional response, and they’re trying to use science. How has that been working out?
Steve Hamilton: [00:27:42] It’s it’s, it’s a tough one. It’s a tough one because we’re consumptive users, right. We go into the back country, uh, for the experience and to try and harvest an animal. And the ultimate goal is to put something in your freezer. And we know as hunters that it’s, it’s managed by the best available science there is out there.
[00:28:05] So for the, they use it to, uh, uh, they, they use emotion to try and portray us as murderers. So we go, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. We’re not murderers. This is managed by science and we don’t, if we push back with emotion, it’s, it’s a tough battle. Like I’ll be straight, it’s a tough battle. So we try and say, it’s a, so it’s a scientifically managed hunt, but here is our connection to it.
[00:28:38] It’s about that there’s uh, there’s 160,000 black bears estimated in British Columbia, a quarter of all the bears in North America reside here in British Columbia. That’s a great argument to counteract, well they’re cute and cuddly and uh, there’s, there’s not enough of them because they do, you see it everywhere.
[00:28:57] Wolves are endangered, black bears are endangered, cougars are endangered. And if we can counteract with a little bit of science and then throw in the emotion of that connection, it’s, it’s hopefully going to go a long way.
Travis Bader: [00:29:08] So, one thing that I was thinking about was what if you don’t counteract with the science, the science is very, very important.
[00:29:17] Have the science as a basis for something that you can rely upon and he can hold up. But what if it isn’t done from a scientific perspective and by it, I mean, what if the, uh, rebuttal isn’t done from a scientific perspective? And what I’m thinking is essentially we’re in a losing situation, the battle that’s being fought is an we’re in an untenable position.
[00:29:43] You cannot defend when the argument has already been framed in such a way that hunting is bad, firearms are bad. I mean, to the non hunter, is a person that you have to get this information right front of. Maybe instead of trying to hold all the science out and say, but look at, look at the numbers over here and look how the science and the one side said that the grizzly bears would all be wiped out at this rate.
[00:30:11] And that didn’t really work out the way that they figured, uh, the science that the hunters have been accumulating is actually good. Sure. What if instead, you take a look at reframing the argument and in a way that essentially makes the motive of the other side, very clear. I mean, like if we were to strip down what the end goal is from this paper in this point and predator hunting, what if we take that to the absolute and degree and start identifying.
[00:30:47] What animals should be harvested and what animals shouldn’t. I bet ya. As you push it down, they would turn around and say, well, I don’t think any animals should be harvested. I think as you push them further and further in that conversation, it would just come down to, I don’t necessarily think hunt hunting is an inalienable, right.
[00:31:10] Even though in the paper, they do say for an indigenous group. Yes. That’s your inalienable. Right. But for everybody else, no, we’ll play nice on this side, but the other side, you know, we, we want some support and you took a look at it for the extremist, uh, essentially emotional terrorism that it is. I think it’d be harder for people to get behind that.
[00:31:33] And in the day and age of, uh, anti-bullying being out in the forefront, the tactics and the way that it’s being portrayed, I mean, hunters aren’t, blood-thirsty savages. But there is that idea out there that a hunter has a firearm, a firearm is violent, firearm causes things to die.
[00:31:59] So in the approach of taking a look at the other side of their argument and really fleshing out what they’re looking at, a two-fold solution, I was thinking anyways, was to separate the hunter from the argument and what I say that, because if you and bear hold with me, cause I don’t have a completely figured out, but I have some thoughts on it, but you’re never going to get all the hunters to play nice.
[00:32:29] They’re going to have people that say, well, I’m, I’m only a small game hunter. I’m only a bird hunter or I’m only a, whatever it might be. So why bother trying to get it all to the hunters on the same page as it goes forward, when they throw a picture up of somebody doing something that’s either illegal or maybe this in very poor taste, all hunters wear that.
[00:32:53] So what if you separate the hunter from there? So if somebody does do that, that’s the drunk driver, not all drivers drive drunk, not all people who get drunk drive, but there is a, there is a very logical separation there. So if you take a look at the actual, uh, end goal of what the other side is trying to do, and then painted it in such a way that shows it for what it is. I have a few more thoughts on that, but I’ve been talking for a bit. So I’m going to let you get to let you, uh, jump in here.
Greg Rensmaag: [00:33:28] Uh, one of the issues with that, um, you know, everybody’s getting painted with that broad brush. So they gave him, if you look in the mainstream media, if there’s a poacher out there and you know, a hundred percent convicted poacher, the mainstream media, majority of them will still call them a hunter.
Travis Bader: [00:33:50] Right.
Greg Rensmaag: [00:33:50] And it’s, well, you’re not a hunter, you’re a poacher, it’s illegal activities. Most of us don’t do that. There’s those, every, every activity has got a bad egg.
Travis Bader: [00:34:02] Right.
Greg Rensmaag: [00:34:02] So we always seem to get painted with that brush and then.
Travis Bader: [00:34:06] You cant escape it.
Greg Rensmaag: [00:34:08] No, no, you can’t for sure.
Steve Hamilton: [00:34:09] It’s the same thing with the way they, they say trophy hunt. And if you ask a non hunter, what a trophy hunt is, it’s somebody who goes out there and shoots the biggest animal they can and only takes the antlers or the horns or the hide. And we tell them, no, that’s a poacher and we’re trying to, they demonize the word trophy.
[00:34:30] And, uh, there’s been studies out there that even when you break it down into a selective hunter, which we prefer to use, where somebody goes out there and they target the biggest animal possible to get, uh, the reward of that, the trophy parts, whether or not it’s the antlers or the hide, the, they break it down.
[00:34:55] And I believe it was less than 4% of hunters identify as a quote unquote trophy hunter. So we’re, we’re trying to, uh, to delineate and show the separation between what a trophy hunter is under their definition versus what is under our definition. And I think that’s where a lot of the disconnect lay. So we do use the, the emotional side of things with, uh, 1Campfire where we try and show what a hunter has in common with a non hunter, because it’s, it’s so much more then the kill.
[00:35:32] It’s about going out and enjoying the back country and time with family and friends. And I’ve always said that the most successful hunts I’ve ever been on, I’ve never even pulled the trigger that because I come back with nothing but memories, hunters, or hikers, we’re boaters, we’re mountain climbers, we’re skiers.
[00:35:51] We’re we’re we’re we, we love fishing. You name it. There’s so much more to the entire package and that’s one of the, uh, the things we try and show. It’s not just a, uh, a blood sport. And that’s another thing you see quite constantly is, uh, there is no limits on anything. That you’re looking to go what, it’s not like you turn a corner and all of a sudden there’s 15 deers standing there and you get out and you mow them down with your scary AR 15 right?
[00:36:19] And it’s, it doesn’t happen. I, I live in Prince George and I get moose in my front yard and bears in my front yard, constantly. But it’s not as easy as that because it’s about so much more than the hunt. So much more than the kill that the hunt is the process, right? And there’s so much more we’re chasing than animals.
Travis Bader: [00:36:45] So 1Campfire, that’s something that Wild Sheep’s Society has supported. And is that it.
Steve Hamilton: [00:36:52] It is Wild Sheep Society. It is a campaign by The Wild Sheep Society. Yes.
Travis Bader: [00:36:56] Okay. And it’s been about two years now, I believe it’s been running for.
Steve Hamilton: [00:37:00] Just over. Yes.
Travis Bader: [00:37:02] And do you guys have metrics, uh, do you hold metrics and do you, uh, have, uh, measuring system for, uh, measuring the efficacy of the 1Campfire.
Steve Hamilton: [00:37:14] No. Specifically, it’s about getting the message out to as many non-hunters as we can with a, a soft core hunting message. Uh it’s. As I said to show that connection that we shared that’s about more than pulling the trigger. So it’s, you’ll see some posts, we’ll have a bit more veiled hunting nuances in there.
[00:37:38] Some we’ll be talking about the hiking and that the tie in with hunting. Uh, we have, uh, tasty Tuesdays, which shows, uh, wild game usage, uh, wildlife, Wednesdays highlight wildlife and successes hunters have had with rebuilding populations, like in the 1930s, uh, they figured turkeys were going to go extinct.
[00:38:01] There was less than 30,000 across, uh, North America. And now there’s over 7 million. It’s it’s, it’s crazy that the positive impact hunting has had on the landscape. And that’s what we try and show with 1Campfire that it’s about so much more than the kill.
Travis Bader: [00:38:16] Mm. So, and, and that definitely shows one side, I think with COVID that there is a huge push for people to want to learn about self sustainability.
Steve Hamilton: [00:38:27] Yes.
Travis Bader: [00:38:27] Self-sufficiency a lot of people want to get into nature and they want to learn about hunting and hunters share an intimate relationship with nature. That non-hunters would have a very difficult time understanding. I mean, the amount of preparation of learning, the land of learning, the animal of learning, how to care for the game, eat afterwards and processing it. And it’s so much more than just the pulling of the trigger that happens in a fraction of a second.
[00:38:58] That’s right. And I think that 1campfire does a great job of showing those other things. I’m wondering if there’s a possible way that somebody perhaps much smarter than myself can take the, uh, take the conversation. And I see 1Campfire as a prong of showing what, uh, uh, hunters do. And I see the general trend towards food as being a huge driver for people to be interested in, in wild foraging, fishing and hunting.
[00:39:30] But is there a way to essentially separate, not even have that trophy argument because trophy hunting by whose definition, obviously there’s, there’s going to be definitions and those definitions can get twisted. So what do we just take trophy rate out of it? Take a look at the hunter aspect.
[00:39:50] We’ll look at this guy, he poached all those animals. Well, he’s not a hunter. Of course he’s not a hunter, but the non-hunters don’t see that. Take the hunting aspect out of it. And maybe go for my perspective of. Why is it this organization wants to see the caribou die? I mean, if I ask a person a question, well, do you still beat your wife?
[00:40:08] How do you answer that, right? Well, no. Okay. So you stopped, right? Well, yeah, so? So you’re a wife beater? Got it. I mean, essentially that’s a position that hunters are currently in. And so talking about trophy hunting and talking about defending these different hunting practices, in my opinion, is a losing battle.
[00:40:29] And maybe that will form the science side. That’ll back up an argument, but a more offensive approach. And it’s not coming out and calling names or, or, or anything like this or the death threats that you are receiving, but it’s really systematically drilling down into the other side and taking a look at what the end goal is.
[00:40:54] And if the science supports that, Hey, guess what? They’re going to have a bunch of hunters that that’ll get in behind it. But if they’re actively saying that science doesn’t support it, who wants to be labeled as an eco terrorist or, I mean, essentially irrational, irrational individual. And my way of thinking goes that that’s sort of the approach that needs to be taken.
[00:41:17] A way to maybe hire a PR company to reframe what is actually happening into something that is palatable and understandable by the general public and maybe hire a law firm because I did in my research notice that the other side seems to be doing both of those things with great success.
Steve Hamilton: [00:41:41] Pro problem is we do have great PR people in our wings with Wild Sheep. Uh, however, the problem is is we, we don’t have the pocket books like them. We’ll be blunt, right? We’re we’re volunteer run. We have what Greg two paid employees.
Greg Rensmaag: [00:41:56] Yep. Two paid employees and 1100 members.
Steve Hamilton: [00:42:01] Yeah.
Greg Rensmaag: [00:42:02] And we, our money’s not as, not as, not there
Travis Bader: [00:42:06] But 115,000 hunters.
Greg Rensmaag: [00:42:09] Yeah. Exactly.
Steve Hamilton: [00:42:10] We, we can’t get, uh, we can’t get 10,000 hunters to sign up, to protect the, the privilege to hunt right now. As you said, hunters, can’t come together to, uh, to agree on what’s the best firearm for using in a season. You still see people. Well, no, I’m a bow hunter, well, I’m a rifle hunter. Well, I’m a shotgun hunter.
[00:42:33] Well, how dare you shoot that two point buck? Well, it was legal, but you should hold out and wait for a mature buck. Get rid of the doe season. There’s a wolf call on right now. Well, don’t shoot anything you can’t eat. I can keep going on and on and on and on. And hunter, hunters can be are, are our own worst enemies.
[00:42:49] And, uh, dude, you nailed it was saying we have a PR problem. We’ve we’ve, uh, we’ve known that for years and it it’s tough to. To take a narrative back from the masses that has been so well executed against us. And especially when you’re facing organizations that have got seemingly endless pocketbooks and a lawyers on retainer.
Travis Bader: [00:43:13] Mhmm. Well, I look at on the firearm side, there’s a ongoing court challenge at the moment for the OIC firearms prohibition that came out and firearms owners said, I know what we’re going to do. We’re going to get a petition, bill E-2341, and we’re going to get people sign this. And what are we going to ask for? Democratic process.
Steve Hamilton: [00:43:36] Yes.
Travis Bader: [00:43:36] We want the government to at least debate the banning of certain firearms or not before passing it through, that’s all we’re asking for. This petition got the largest number of signatures of any e-pe- I don’t know if it’s any petition, but definitely any e-petition in Canadian history. And the result of that was. Eh. That’s it.
Steve Hamilton: [00:44:01] Yep.
Travis Bader: [00:44:01] Oh, thanks guys. Next. And I have to wonder, the same approach if, if hunters and a lot of hunters will not, uh, put themselves in the same boat as the people fighting on E-2341 or the OIC firearms prohibition because they say I’m a waterfowl hunter, it doesn’t affect me. And maybe it does, right. But with the, the current trend that’s happening, that you’re going to see in the news.
[00:44:35] There’s a lot of people that are certain to pick up and say, hold on a second. If they can ban firearms to ordering counsel, just without any debate, what would happen to my other pro personal property that I own? And the firearms um, advocacy, advocacy groups have been working very hard to find a relationship between that and something that the general public can get behind and understand.
Steve Hamilton: [00:45:03] That’s right.
Travis Bader: [00:45:04] And for hunters in British Columbia, I think a process of divorcing the hunters from the actual conversation completely and take a look at something that the general public can get behind as a, uh, something that makes sense. Well, hold on a second, if they ban predator hunting based off of social license to operate or social license to hunt, which the social license to operate really speaks for a group of individuals, but not all of the individuals.
[00:45:37] And it’s usually the most vociferous group that’s going to say, Hey, w we, we hold the moral high ground, right? And then the rest of the people say, I could care less right. I’m not a hunter, hey, sounds good. That’s a nice looking wolf over there.
Steve Hamilton: [00:45:49] Yep.
Travis Bader: [00:45:49] So if, if hunters are able to reframe exactly what it is that the other side is trying to say, in a factual way and really point out, uh, what that is and why, and make it applicable. I think it would be a heck of a lot easier.
Steve Hamilton: [00:46:07] Yeah, totally get it. I, when it comes to e-petitions, I was the one behind 2576, the democratic process that had 60,000 and I got the, uh, the, the pushback of, eh. And essentially that’s, what’s, that’s, what’s happening to us right now is hunters, right?
[00:46:22] We can have the loudest voice online in our own little community, but if we can’t get that social license out there in the non-hunters, because if you want to break it down, uh, uh, demographically, what we’re, we have 5 million people in BC give or take, and we got 115,000. And if you take away even half that are against large carnivore hunting, we’re down to 50,000 and we’re, we’re, we’re this much of the population.
[00:46:53] And we know that we don’t hold the votes. Even if every single hunter signed, we don’t hold the votes. We need that swing of the 80% on the fence. We need to show them that we’re not the bad guys that we truly care about wildlife, right. And that’s, that’s the uphill battle we’ve been facing. Like I said, 30, 40 years ago, it was commonplace to see deer on the hood of a car. You do that now and ho boy.
Travis Bader: [00:47:19] But showing them that we’re not the bad guys is defensive again.
Steve Hamilton: [00:47:22] That’s right.
Travis Bader: [00:47:23] Is there an offensive approach? And maybe like I say, maybe a listener will come in and play offense of something that’s clear and easily looked at by any side and will stand on its own, on its own merits. Not something that has to be talked about secretly in the background and not, not some mud mud-slinging campaign, but. It seems to me that a proper offensive approach . Definitely needs to be, be like a pivot
Steve Hamilton: [00:47:49] And that’s where it gets tough. Uh, we we’ve had people say, uh, w there’s been some great graphics that have circulated in the hunting community of this is what a wolf really is like where you’ve got a cow moose standing in a puddle with their a little calf and there’s six or seven wolves around it showing . That, well, they’re not all magical mystical beings that ride rainbows, right as they’re portrayed they’re they’re wild animals.
[00:48:14] We know that it’s just, how can you show the non-hunting public, the truth behind these mystical beings? There’s there’s another great one that circulates in the hunting community of a polar bear. Greg knows the one that I’m talking about, where it’s a committed infanticide, where it’s holding the head of a two month, three month old cub, because it’s just killed.
Travis Bader: [00:48:37] It’s common.
Steve Hamilton: [00:48:37] It wants to, that’s right. Because it just killed the Cub because it wants to breed mom again and send her into an estrous cycle. Problem becomes is how do we put the real reality of nature out there without almost being offensive, right? It’s a, it’s an ugly battle.
Travis Bader: [00:48:54] Maybe it’s not so much a reality of nature, but maybe the reality of the argument that’s being used against hunters and the reality of the other side, if all of a sudden the other, the people who would look to ban hunting based on the fact that it doesn’t hold the moral high ground are shown to be essentially terrorists and their approach.
[00:49:19] Let’s get, let, let’s get everybody together. Let’s stage whatever photos we can, let’s get as much social outcry, right. Let’s make death threats. And if that picture is painted. And we just, I mean.
Steve Hamilton: [00:49:32] We’ve, we’ve I know I personally have, and Greg has as well, we’ve got pages of death threats of screenshots that we’ve had against, uh, hunters and anglers and sport shooters. And we’ve, we’ve shipped them to the media. We, I had one local media person that had the balls a couple of years ago to cover it. And it didn’t go anywhere beyond that.
[00:49:53] Well, are the police agencies will generally say, unless you feel a direct threat, we can’t act on it. Well, that person lives in England. They’re just venting, block them. So it’s, it’s tough. And it’s, I, yeah, it’s just, uh, almost feel like we’re spinning our wheels when it comes to how we show that we’re, we’re not as bad and there’s, there’s a, uh, a YouTube video out there that I got to find again, it’s a Paul Watson. From Greenpeace and he’s in an interview kind of off the cuff with somebody and it goes back, Oh, this must be mid eighties.
[00:50:34] And he says something to the effect of when we want to raise money, we’ll, we’ll go after wolves or bears because they’re the ones people will grab onto. And we can turn this into a money making campaign, something like that gets out there. But the problem is, is getting the mainstream media to run with it without, uh, without any spin.
[00:50:53] We’ve, uh, we’ve had some we’ve, we’ve had some great media coverage out there and you read, you read, you read. You’re like, all right, all right. Holy crap, they did it. And then they spun it into something that it really truly wasn’t. So I don’t know, Greg, what are your thoughts on, uh, how something like that could be done? Like I said, Greg and I admin pages where there’s probably 200,000 people between us. So we see, we see it in the hunter community.
Greg Rensmaag: [00:51:18] The one that, uh, with Travis, you’ve been from the lower mainland as well. The, the cougars and poco right now. Sure. And you know, conservation officers have put down a couple of those cougars and the backlash that they’ve gotten on social media, they’re getting death threats.
[00:51:37] And, you know, people are upset that they’re killing the cougars that are coming into their neighbourhoods, stalking their children, killing their pets, but they’re monsters for protecting the people. So where, where do we grasp the emotional ground to, to take these take on the anti hunters? You know, they’re so upset about being protected from cougars.
[00:52:07] Like w there, we’re monsters for putting down a problem animal in your neighbourhood, in your backyard, that’s taken a puppy off a leash while someone’s walking it. Like you can’t, you can’t argue with those people and, and then if you do.
Travis Bader: [00:52:23] What would mama bear do if, if it was coming after her cubs, I mean, we are a part of the whole natural process and we have stuck our finger in the dish of water and we cannot expect not to see ripples.
Greg Rensmaag: [00:52:37] Yep.
Steve Hamilton: [00:52:38] Nailed it. Exactly great. And that’s, that’s the disconnect. People they go, let nature balance itself while we are in nature, wrap your head around that we’re part of nature and it might make it easier, right? Like that’s, that’s a way we could possibly approach it. Right. Remember, we are a part of nature.
[00:52:55] And as such, you do have an impact, right? Whether, whether or not you’re vegan, pescatarian, vegetarian, or full on carnivore, in order for us to live, something has to die. Whether or not you do it by your own hand or somebody else’s hand you’ve you’re, you’re killing something in order to have to live on this planet.
[00:53:15] And it’s just as hunters, we, we choose to take out the middleman right? And, uh, we, we try to connect with our food as much as possible. And it’s, yeah, it’s about, it’s about that connection and trying to show it as much as possible and not be offensive, but be real. So, yeah, it’s a tough battle and it’s, uh, there’s, there’s a couple of people out there that have got similar sort of ideas.
[00:53:40] Uh, Greg will know Robby uh, Robby Krueger. He says that, uh, we were pushing a stone uphill with our shoulder and it we’re going to continue to do it as people are pushing the mud down the hill where it’s still trying to push it up right. So it’s tough. It really is.
Travis Bader: [00:53:56] Yeah. I think from the hunting perspective, yes, definitely. When you take a look at the Tahltan, and they’ve said, grizzlies are out of control. Yep. We’re going to have to start calling them. You look at the paper that Chris wrote. Oh, indigenous groups. We just they’ve got an inalienable, right.
Steve Hamilton: [00:54:14] That’s right.
Travis Bader: [00:54:15] If we take a look at this logic, how is it that they have a right and non-indigenous don’t and at the indigenous have a right. At what point does their social license to operate expire, but you look at the, um, New Zealand sharp, super suitors that are brought in on my Haida Gwaii just to, to cull the animals. All the, uh, uh, sitka is out there.
Steve Hamilton: [00:54:38] That’s right.
Travis Bader: [00:54:39] You look at the amount of commercial fishing that we do, larger grizzly bear population that they’re bringing fish out for them to eat, because they say all these grizzly bears are starving in certain areas. Like at some point we have to put rules and regulations in place that will affect how we interact with nature, because we are an apex predator.
Steve Hamilton: [00:55:00] That’s right.
Travis Bader: [00:55:01] And, and, and we’re a part of this, but by completely turning a blind eye and shutting down certain areas of the management, we’re too far into this game to be able to do that. And we do need to take a scientific approach to be able to manage this properly for generations to come. But the messaging and I, I agree a thousand percent on the science, but the messaging I think, has to be approached from an emotional standpoint.
Steve Hamilton: [00:55:30] Yeah.
Travis Bader: [00:55:30] If you’re having an emotional argument.
Steve Hamilton: [00:55:32] That’s right. Yeah. I’ve, I’ve said in a conversations to our committee that, uh, we’re, we’re, we’ve got a scientific, uh, approach to an emotional argument and it’s, you can, uh, You can put it in front of people that it’s a scientifically managed hunt. Like it let’s let’s let’s step back just a sec. If we, we all saw the polls on the grizzly bear hunt, do you support the grizzly bear trophy hunt?
[00:56:02] Right? That’s how it was worded and imagine how it would change if it said, do you support a science based grizzly hunt? I imagine you might not have had the 95% against and a 5% for you might have had a 50 50. So it’s about, it’s about showing that there’s a science involved in the hunting process. So we still, we S we, we still have to show that it’s managed because as I said, there’s, there’s people out there that believe it’s a free for all that.
[00:56:31] There’s no licenses, there’s no seasons. Uh, as soon as you hit hope, you can go out and just blast anything you want. And there’s no meat requirements. There’s no age, age for hunting. You can have your two year old out there shooting, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. So we still need to incorporate some of the scientific evidence.
[00:56:55] I won’t say it’s an argument cause it really isn’t. It’s a scientific evidence that hunting is managed by seasons and science, but you’re, you’re correct. We have to appeal to that emotional, that emotional trigger with some people pardon the power firearms pun. Um, but in, in that’s that that’s the aim of 1Campfire.
[00:57:14] We, we try and show that science with the emotion in there as well. And yeah, if we had an unlimited budget, we’d love to dump tens of thousands of dollars, hundreds of thousands of dollars into retaining a lawyer that could just say, you could go this far, but you can’t quite in, you know what I mean? And, and push, push the way they do.
[00:57:40] And, uh, yeah, it’s, it’s a tough argument to win when are, uh, as they are going to say, our ultimate goal is to kill something, right? Cause that’s, that’s what they see hunting as right. We go out there to kill. So it’s tough.
Travis Bader: [00:57:56] What if the science is used to make an emotional argument? Like for example, take a look at the science of what happens if the wolves abandons put on and wolves can’t be hunted anymore. What happens to the caribou population? Okay. What happens to the population of other animals in those areas?
[00:58:11] And then a year later, what happens to that thriving wolf community when there isn’t any food for them to be able to survive? And then sort of look at it down the way from a science-based approach and then use the emotional argument. Why would you want to see all of these wolves starved to death? Why would you want to see an entire population of caribou eradicated? Would you support that? Why are you guys supporting that? I dunno, maybe.
Steve Hamilton: [00:58:41] Yeah. We’ve we’ve we tried similar, uh, approaches like that, but it’s, you’ll see Chris and his crew immediately re uh, rebut the science that shows that they, we disagree with that science and then all of a sudden their, their crowd goes, Oh yeah, they’re wrong.
[00:59:00] We know that there’s, uh, another article coming out shortly with, uh, that against Chris’s paper. They it’s you’ll have your, your pro hunting with your pro hunting scientists on one side. And you have your anti hunting scientists on the other side, and they’re forever jousting and they’re forever in a tug of war.
[00:59:20] So th th th the, uh, the, the ugly part about using science, uh, to base 100% of an argument on is who science are you gonna lose? Right. Right. Who science is best. So, yeah, it’s, it’s, he says, you’re putting your shoulder into a rock and you’re trying to push it up Hill. And as I said, we’re never going to change the mind of a hundred percent of the people, but if we can change the mind out of one out of 10, that person can change another.
[00:59:50] And that person that can change another. And we’ll, we’ll just keep pushing the way we can. And yeah, we we’d love to hear some ideas from, uh, from listeners on what they feel is, uh, is a realistic approach. The one that we can put smart goals on and stuff like that, right. We, we need to be, we need to throw a wide net, but we also need to dial it down to be specific for the cause.
Travis Bader: [01:00:17] And the science, what was it? Disraeli was supposed to have said there’s lies, damn lies and statistics.
Steve Hamilton: [01:00:23] Statistics, yep.
Travis Bader: [01:00:25] Um, okay. Like I said, had some thoughts on it, had an idea, definitely didn’t have it fully fleshed out.
Steve Hamilton: [01:00:32] Appreciate it.
Travis Bader: [01:00:33] And I mean, this is everyone’s.
Steve Hamilton: [01:00:36] Oh, yeah.
Travis Bader: [01:00:37] Everyone’s in everybody’s interest to put their heads together and think on it.
Steve Hamilton: [01:00:43] Absolutely it is because it’s the same battles affecting the firearms community right now. You have your, your3Gun and your, your IPSC and all that. Right. You know, you don’t, uh, when you can’t even come together on, well, what’s, this can put you in a spot here what’s better a Glock or 1911, right. Like, right, right. Oh God, well, no, no, no, I like that. I like that, right? No, it’s a firearm. You take one away. The other one’s going to follow, right.
Travis Bader: [01:01:10] Right.
Steve Hamilton: [01:01:10] And that’s, we’re in the same sort of argument and it’s, it’s, it’s tough. I don’t know. I don’t know. It’s, it’s tough.
Travis Bader: [01:01:19] I definitely think a reframe needs to happen on the firearm side. That always gets me. You say Glock or 1911, but what’s the difference between a rifle, shotgun or a pistol other than her size, your rifle is going to do much more damage than your pistol is, but it’s a mental perception around firearms based on media and based what’s been put forward.
[01:01:39] I think we’re at a unique, we do have a unique opportunity with COVID and with the current state of affairs here, with the way everyone’s thinking about stockpiling and some sufficiency to be able to have a more receptive audience, people who might otherwise say, what do I care about hunting to hold, hold on a second.
[01:01:59] Maybe I, maybe I want to have some animals around here for my kids to be able to see. And maybe that is a more sustainable way of our livelihood. So I think that might present something as well. I don’t know.
Steve Hamilton: [01:02:13] It’s a tough one to get out there to the big, uh, the big picture, right? When you can’t get media to cover the good side of what it is, right. That they’ll grab on to the negative of the poachers. Oh, he shot two moose. Well, you know what, if you look at a hundred thousand hunters, 98,000 of them are going to condemn them for it. Right. But, you know, latch onto those, those two. So it’s tough.
Travis Bader: [01:02:38] Well, I’m going to put links up on our website and on social media where people can learn more about The wild Sheep Society, learn more about how they can submit their letter in and be involved with their MLA.
[01:02:50] Uh, there, I was talking with Jenny Ly, she was with Backcountry Hunters and Anglers. Yes. And, uh, she works on the social media side and she mentioned that, you know, Hey, if you got a small social media feed, you only have like 25 friends on there. Don’t think you can’t make a difference, the algorithm on social media is set up in such a way that it wants to give you a wider play to essentially draw you into the social media structure.
[01:03:17] So tell your story, right? Maybe not the grip, maybe not the gripping grins right, but tell the story about the blisters on your feet. Tell a story similar to what camp 1Campfire is doing. And then there was, um, it was Jesse Zeeman who was talking about, go see, meet with your MLA, right? Manage your social feed, uh, venison diplomacy, share your meat with your neighbours.
[01:03:42] And that’s where Shane Mahoney says on The Wild Harvest Initiative. It’s a, the, the food is the binding, the end product, the end result of it.
Steve Hamilton: [01:03:51] Yep.
Travis Bader: [01:03:52] And finally be a mentor, take people out.
Steve Hamilton: [01:03:55] Yeah. I got a buddy buddy of mine. He and I actually went to kindergarten together. And so we’re going back 40 some odd years. He lives in Delta, so I.
Travis Bader: [01:04:05] Right next door with us.
Steve Hamilton: [01:04:07] Oh yeah. Yeah. So, but three years ago I posted a picture of a bear and I get a private message from him. And usually it’s. So I post a picture of a bear and if I get a message about it, it’s why’d you do that, right? And it gives me a chance. It opens the door, but he approached me and he says, so I’ve always been curious about hunting. Right?
[01:04:31] Outcome my claws, so to speak, see if I can sink, sink them in. We were in cadets together. We did survival school, we did all the fun stuff together. We camp you name it, but we hadn’t seen each other, in person, in probably 25 years. So I sent him a care package of bear. And so that’s three years ago, long story short, this will be his third year of COVID, uh, disappears or restrictions open up of him coming up here hunting.
[01:05:02] He’s now got his CORE, he’s taken three bears. Uh, he’s got, he’s an IPSC shooter now, he’s got his PAL. So that all it takes is that opening that door for that conversation and reacting right. He’s written a story about his first hunt with for 1Campfire, he shares his story. He’s got his neighbor now who’s got his CORE, never hunted, but opened that door with a go, go pound on the door and here’s some game meat and his, uh, the neighbor’s wife said, don’t, you dare bring bear over here. Guess what? Now it’s a staple in their house. So you open door to conversation.
Travis Bader: [01:05:41] And even if they’re friends.
Steve Hamilton: [01:05:43] That’s right.
Travis Bader: [01:05:43] Sorry, go ahead.
Steve Hamilton: [01:05:44] That’s right. Open up that conversation, right? Open that door. Uh, venison diplomacies you can’t say it any better than that, right? You never know, uh, uh, who a hunter is, right?
[01:05:56] They’re not always what you think. And that’s one of the campaigns we got going with. I Hunt, right. It’s uh, for, for 1Campfire, it’s called I Hunt and it’s meant to blow stereotypes out of the water. So check it out, check it out on our Facebook. You’ll see a pin post there and you watch it and you’ll go, Oh my God.
[01:06:12] I had no idea that person was a hunter and it may, it’s meant to make you go, Hmm, scratch your head and go. I wonder if that person’s a hunter, I wonder if that person’s a hunter and we’ve, uh, I actually saw the first draft of our latest one that I storyboarded today. It’s, I’m stoked for it. It’s going to have some huge outreach. So we’re, we’re building, building outreach that way as well. So yeah, as you said, venison, diplomacy get people out there.
Travis Bader: [01:06:38] That’s a good idea. You know, bring it out of the shadows. And even if other people aren’t interested in getting into hunting, their friends and family, their friends and family, we’ll say, Hey, this individual comports himself in an admirable way. I like how this person is and their daily life and they happened to be a hunter. I now know what a hunter, a good person.
Steve Hamilton: [01:06:58] And that’s exactly what I, the I hunt campaign for 1Campfire is about, it’s about showing, showing the closing, the closing line is if I say I hunt, am I what you’d picture? We’re not as different as you may think it’s meant to make you go. Hmm.
Travis Bader: [01:07:14] Interesting.
Steve Hamilton: [01:07:15] I had no idea.
Travis Bader: [01:07:16] An interesting endeavour. Is there anything else we should talk about before we start looking at we’re . Wrapping up here?
Steve Hamilton: [01:07:24] What do you think, Greg?
Greg Rensmaag: [01:07:25] But I think we’ve pretty much covered ActNow.
Steve Hamilton: [01:07:28] So, Oh yeah, yeah, no, uh, I appreciate you reaching out to us and, uh, giving us, uh, a sounding board, so to speak.
Travis Bader: [01:07:35] 100%, I appreciate you listened to some of my harebrained thoughts that I have while I sit up late at night trying to think of solutions for things, but hopefully somebody else out there might say, you know what Travis, you’re kind of on the right track, but tweak it or have a completely different idea. And if they do have an idea, how do they contact you?
Steve Hamilton: [01:07:53] You can email us at exec [email protected] and put in the, the, the header, uh, Silvercore Podcast or, or whatever expletive you want. You’re way off base. Just feedback is great.
Travis Bader: [01:08:09] Yep.
Steve Hamilton: [01:08:10] Reach out to us on Facebook, Instagram, you name it. We’re available, and we’d love to hear feedback of where you think we need to go with this. Any ideas?
Greg Rensmaag: [01:08:20] Yep. We’re we’re open for any ideas anybody’s got, we want to hear them because we’re drums like sometimes too.
Travis Bader: [01:08:28] Gentlemen, thank you very much for taking the time to be on The Silvercore Podcast and sharing this important information with our
Steve Hamilton: [01:08:36] Thanks again Travis.
Greg Rensmaag: [01:08:49] Thanks Travis.
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