This is a big deal, folks. A couple of “want to change the world” green groups are seeking to change a national law, put control of ammunition under a federal department rather than Congress and get rid of ALL lead ammo in one shot. In less than 90 days and counting.
Hunters and anglers are notorious for standing on the sidelines and complaining, but hopefully this will be enough motivation for a significant portion of us to weigh in. How to weigh in is below, but first some interesting tidbits about the goofball petition which might actually succeed since our government seems to be goofball central (regardless of political party!).
From the New York Post (seriously!):
> NSSF [National Shooting Sports Foundation] reports that recent statistics from the United States Fish and Wildlife Service show that from 1981 to 2006, the number of breeding pairs of bald eagles in the U.S. increased 724 percent. And much like the bald eagle, raptor populations throughout the country are soaring.
> The federal excise tax that manufacturers pay on the sale of the ammunition (11 percent) is a primary source of wildlife conservation funding. The bald eagle’s recovery, considered to be a great conservation success story, was made possible and funded by hunters using traditional ammunition – the very ammunition, says the NSSF, that organizations like the CBD are now demonizing.
So much for the photo of the dead bald eagle on the cover of the lead ban petition. And that’s absolutely right: The not-talked about fact is the nearly 100% of significant wildlife conservation in this country was and is funded by sportsmen.
From the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel:
> The Toxic Substances Control Act exempts ammunition, said Larry Keane, senior VP and general counsel of the National Shooting Sports Foundation. “That’s been the law since it was enacted in 1976,” Keane said. “So we think the EPA won’t have legal authority to do what is proposed in the petition.”
> Additionally, since the petition applies to civilian target shooting and military and law enforcement uses of ammunition, it will encounter extra heavy opposition, Keane said.
> “[Jeff Miller of the Center for Biological Diversity, the lead petitioner] said he didn’t believe, if successful, the petition would result in a drop in hunting and fishing. He also said the price of non-lead alternatives would come down if the petition were successful.
“Compact florescent light bulbs were prohibitively expensive when they first came out,” Miller said. “Now they are almost the same cost as conventional light bulbs.”
We are willing to bet one of our left reproductive organs that Jeff Miller hasn’t hunted or shot a thing in his life, and wouldn’t know a shotgun shell from a .22 round. We’d bet one of our right organs that he does know that hunting is a pass-along sport, so if fewer hunters do it for a while, that means proportionately fewer in the future.
From an article in the Seattle Gun Rights Examiner:
> A visit to the [website of the American Bird Conservancy, one of the lead ban petitioners] reveals that in 476 AD, the Roman Empire collapsed and that a “major contributing factor” was the use of lead in water pipes, cosmetics, pottery and food. That might come as a surprise to all of those foolish historians who thought barbarian invasions and the rise of Christianity had something to do with Rome’s fall. Maybe when the Visigoths sacked the place in 410 AD, all they found were sick Centurions.
> “Hunters have eaten venison taken with lead bullets for hundreds of years. Yet there is not one documented case of lead poisoning from eating deer meat. Doctors are required to report all cases of lead poisoning to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), yet according to CDC public health advisor Kimball Credle, no cases have ever been traced to wild game meat.” [From the NRA.]
And last but not least, this unbelievable gem from the same Jeff Miller quoted from above. Yes, he really said this, in the NY Times:
> “If we had to show major population-level effects on many species to evaluate anything that caused ecological harm, we’d never ban anything,” he said. “There is compelling evidence of harm to many species, and there are alternatives. It doesn’t make sense to continue with it.”
What the heck? He is flat out saying that they have no evidence of major population-level effects for harm from lead. So the science isn’t there. Then why seek to ban lead ammo? One guess.
Contact the EPA
The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) urged everyone to contact the Environmental Protection Agency to oppose the Aug. 3 petition. Your right to choose the ammunition you hunt and shoot with is at stake. Express your opposition by calling or e-mailing:
Lisa P. Jackson
Administrator, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20460
Fax: (202) 501-1450
Assistant Administrator, Prevention, Pesticides & Toxic Substances U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW Washington, DC 20460
Fax: (202) 546-0801
We sent them an email! Might want to weigh in with your representatives too.