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Permission to Kill

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A letter from one of our readers and friends: Georgie Fong

 

I gave up fishing when I was eight years old. My brother and I would go with our grandfather down to the fisherman’s wharf in San Francisco to go fishing. I felt it was good time with grandpa, until one day the fish I hooked started to bleed from its mouth. That’s when I realized it must hurt the fish, since when I bleed, I hurt!!!

My daughter gave up fishing for the same reason. Her father never would give up fishing. He grew up fishing as a little boy and brought home his “catch” and was proud of providing for his parents and brother. Then one day, after we were married for a couple of years, he went on a fishing spree, and made the comment that he was providing food for the family. I said to him, “Are you crazy?????? You provide food on the table by being a doctor, not by fishing!”

But he continued, and that was the rationalization he used to give himself permission to kill. He started to fish a couple of times out of the year, then he started to go up to Alaska during the salmon run and he killed hundreds of salmon. He then went every chance he could all through the year.

It was seven years later, after he died, that I realized that he was addicted to his adrenaline high, which he got from his fight with the fish.

He used to make all the same comments as a hunter, which I didn’t understand then. But years later, after his death, I ran into an article from a San Francisco writer who wrote in defense of hunting. Then I heard all the same comments coming out of the hunter’s mouth.

Image courtesy of Apolonia / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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