In recent weeks, the supposedly compassionate and caring anti-hunters have pounced on their latest target as they threatened the life of yet another hunter. This time the hunter under attack is Nikki Tate, 27, a wife and lawyer from Dallas, Texas.
Tate is also a regular on Instagram and has more than 11,000 people following her account. Her Instagram posts feature photographs of the many game animals she’s taken on hunts as well as pics of her cleaning her game. The attention via Instagram lead the British newspaper The Daily Mail to publish a feature on Tate—complete with photographs of the animals she’s taken and of Tate processing her game meat.
As soon as the story hit, antis began posting comments on The Daily Mail’s website such as these:
• "Yet another vile and dumb human—let’s hope she gets hunted next. She's quite obviously mentally unwell to get kicks out of this." • "Good God she should be hunted with rifles for a while…I am sure it’s a lot of fun and such a challenge and excitement for her!"
For another example, after Tate posted a photo of herself with a deer she’d hung for processing, one Instagram user went as far as to say, “I would pay to see you hung like that.”
Of course, this isn’t the first time hunters have received threats on social media and the Internet because they hunt. The danger is when such hatred escalates beyond social media threats.
As the NRA Hunters’ Leadership Forum reported last year in an article titled, “Death Threats Expose Hypocrisy of Anti-Hunters,” one confrontational anti-hunter approached a hunter in Utah demanding to know if the hunter had permission to hunt on that land—public land. Fortunately, when the hunter’s friend arrived, the anti-hunter immediately left. Police later confirmed that the anti-hunter was carrying a loaded revolver.
But to her credit, Tate is unfazed by the negative backlash she has received in the past and from the more recent article coverage.
“I hunt for food, conservation, friendship and so much more, all of which are very important to me,” she told The Daily Mail. “If I can respect others' beliefs, values and reasons, even those that involve human life and death, please respect mine.”
As far as the rather explicit photos of her cleaning her game animals: “Most people love my hunting pictures and social media pages,” she said. “I think people really appreciate the fact that I don't sugarcoat anything.”
But there is a lesson in all of this: We American hunters must be careful regarding the images we post on social media. As anti-hunting extremist groups try to end all hunting, we are in a culture war to save its future. Talk with the non-hunters in your life and explain to them hunting’s many benefits to our wildlife resources.