“An Open-Air Abattoir”

One of the best lines in George Romero’s “Dawn of the Dead” (the original), was spoken by one of the characters upon picking up a shiny new rifle in a locked-down gun shop inside a mall. “The only person that could miss with this gun is the sucker with the money to buy it…”

I’ll let that statement speak for itself, but it brings to mind Dick Cheney’s wild weekend once again. There were plenty of articles back at the end of 2003 that revealed Cheney’s love of canned hunts. During one particularly bloody outing at the Rolling Rock Club in Ligonier Township, PA, Cheney’s group of ten “hunters” killed some 417 pheasants out of 500 raised and released specifically for this purpose. Here’s a quote from the linked article:

“This wasn’t a hunting ground. It was an open-air abattoir, and the vice president should be ashamed to have patronized this operation and then slaughtered so many animals,” states Wayne Pacelle, a senior vice president of The Humane Society of the United States. “If the Vice President and his friends wanted to sharpen their shooting skills, they could have shot skeet or clay, not resorted to the slaughter of more than 400 creatures planted right in front of them as animated targets.”


I’m reminded of the Monty Python sketch as well, where several highbrow british hunters embark on a spirited hunt, large rifles tucked under their arms. They are all drunk, shooting in every which direction, hitting everything in sight (including each other). 417 birds is a lot of shooting. At one bird every thirty seconds, it would still take over three hours to shoot that many birds. That’s three hours of shooting with one bird killed every thirty seconds. I can’t even conceive of killing one or two pheasants for sport, let alone over four hundred.

It would seem as though on these trips, there is a hell of a lot of shooting going on, and it’s no wonder that someone eventually got hurt. Gotta be careful out there, folks. You never know where the vice president will be.

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