Letter: Give Sundays back to nonhunters in NC

Graphic by Lori Deaton

Thanks for the July 5 article by Daniel Walton regarding a constitutional amendment to protect the right to hunt and fish in North Carolina [“Hunting For Votes: Constitutional Amendment on Hunting and Fishing Rights May Have Political Motives].

This amendment will address a problem that doesn’t actually exist. However, with last year’s passage of [the] Outdoor Heritage Enhanced [law], our legislature created a very real problem for nonhunters who have relied on Sundays as a free and clear day to go where they please on our public lands, in particular our national forests. Fall and winter Sundays are especially critical for visitors to the Croatan National Forest in Eastern North Carolina, because conditions in the warmer months of the year can be extremely challenging for camping and hiking, and you can just about forget off-trail exploration of the more remote areas.

But as regards any of our four national forests in North Carolina — the Croatan, Nantahala, Pisgah and Uwharrie — Outdoor Heritage Enhanced essentially confiscates our one day and hands it over to people who already had six.

Many of our state legislators understand that opening public lands to hunting on Sundays greatly diminishes access and enjoyment of these lands for everybody else who wants to spend safe, quality time in the woods. As a compromise, let the hunters have private property and gamelands outside our national forests, and leave the national forests wide open to everyone else on Sundays.

The referendum currently proposed won’t hurt anything or accomplish anything. A referendum that allows North Carolina residents to decide whether or not they want hunting on national forest lands on Sunday would have far greater meaning to the state. It would also be in much greater harmony with our current state constitution, which says, “It shall be the policy of this State to conserve and protect its lands and waters for the benefit of all its citizenry …” (Article XIV, Miscellaneous, Sec. 5, emphasis added).

— Tom Glasgow
New Bern

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2 thoughts on “Letter: Give Sundays back to nonhunters in NC

  1. Stan Hawkins

    I am in agreement and opposed to the idea of opening up legal hunting on public lands on Sundays. Being an outdoor enthusiast and hunter for many years, I have long been skeptical about being in the big woods on legal days during hunting seasons already. Of many reasons, not knowing who else is toting a gun on public lands and how experienced they are at gun and hunting safety has been a primary concern.

    Just a heads up though, government hunting regulations cannot always be the end all to protect your safety in the woods even if Sundays are protected. Wearing bright colors and a jingle on your belt loop would be a good idea. And, inexperienced hunters often do not stray too far from a trail. Also, Game Wardens will tell you some hunters will hunt illegally anyway. Good luck and be aware of being safe.

  2. John

    I like the ability to slaughter animals any day of the week. I work on Saturdays, so Sundays is the only time I can carry my guns into Bent Creek and shoot anything that move. How dare you liberals try to take that right away from me. If I want to shoot animals with my boy, then that is my first amendment right. MAGA! This is why Trump won and will again!

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