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Do you tell people you are going Foxhunting?

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  • Do you tell people you are going Foxhunting?

    For some reason, at this point I find it more advisable to keep it quiet...
    I am going to a Hoof Care clinic on Sat, and bringing my horse down since I will be Foxhunting at a nearby location.
    I don't know those people and instead of blurting out that I was going foxhunting the next day, I said I was "going on a ride" -which is true also...
    I guess I did not want to be judged before I got there, since I don't know them.
    The barn where the clinic is at holds frequent Pepperonis clinics if you catch my drift, and I am sure some of them would be appalled at chasing a poor little fox (well, it's coyotes up here, but they would think foxes...)
    I know it might be a case a the pot calling the kettle black, since I am pre-judging them also...

    PS: When I get there, I will have no qualms disclosing it, I just did not want my horse turned away...
    "When life gives you scurvy, make lemonade."

  • #2
    I most certainly do. And you would be surprised at the number of people who want to know more about it, what we do, why, how it happens and so on. And then lots of them want to know if and how they can come out to watch.
    I get a few raised eyebrows and funny looks, but most of the people that I would be speaking to where what I do with my horses would come up know that I am the last person that would be involved in anything that would cause unnecessary distress to an animal.
    So think in a positive way, be proud of what you do and use the openings you may get as an opportunity to be an ambassador for and to educate others about our sport.

    I have to say this: if I were ashamed of what I am doing or felt as though I had to hide it from others I sure wouldn't be doing it.
    "Perhaps the final test of anybody's love of dogs is their willingness to permit them to make a camping ground of the bed" -Henry T. Merwin

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    • #3
      Yes I do.

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      • Original Poster

        #4
        Well, it doesn't so much have to do with being ashamed, it's more like it's not necessarily the first thing I want to blurt out to total strangers...

        I have actually been pretty excited to tell friends and relatives that I went on Sunday riding my 5 year old for his first time out, bla, bla, bla... I've only gone twice in 2 years, and had a lot of fun both times, even though it was only about 18 degrees this time - Brrrr!
        "When life gives you scurvy, make lemonade."

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        • #5
          Yep, I do. Even sometimes to non-horsey people (as long as I'm reasonably sure they're not going to eat me first thing) because I figure the more people learn that we are not hoity-toity snobs on our high horses and just a bunch of regular people who love horses having a fun time the less of a stigma it will have. I find most people are pretty receptive to it as long as I approach it in the right way. After all, this is my passion and I am open to what other people do, so I can only accept the same from others.
          Last edited by Little Valkyrie; Feb. 2, 2009, 08:03 PM. Reason: add stuff
          It's psychosomatic. You need a lobotomy. I'll get a saw.

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          • #6
            Absolutely! I didn't start out doing it, but it was so well-received by everyone I've ever talked to about it, I just stopped being worried. Heck, I even put it on my Facebook status from time to time. Everyone always wants to know if I carry a gun

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            • #7
              Everyone who knows me knows about my horse and foxhunting. I find that people are very curious and interested in what we do. I assure them that we do not torture animals, and that puts people at ease, as that is most often a question of non-horsey people. I love what I do and, as much as I can, want to be an ambassador for the sport. There is nothing that can compare to my animals and my hunting. It's a part of who I am.

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              • #8
                Yes, you bet

                While it helps that I live in an area that has several active hunts, I have the chance to travel frequently both domestically and abroad and often when I am going abroad, I hunt. That being said, I make no bones about it and if someone challenges me on it, I often give them the actual facts with regard to how many foxes we haven't seen or caught - which is a lot!

                To add to this, I also am pretty no nonsense with regard to why I eat meat and why I wear leather, etc. I truly appreciate the perspective that others have and are entitled too. I don't try to make converts of them and I try to exercise patience and understanding and expect the same of them.

                I leave it to you to gauge your audience and phrase your exploits accordingly - snicker. I'll think you'll find however, that if you are talking to folks that know you, they'll appreciate your perspective and preferences and you may even educate them in the process (say it isn't so!).

                Enjoy!

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                • #9
                  Yes, absolutely. In a way, I'm a bit disappointed that in 37 years I haven't had a negative reaction yet. But mostly I end up answering lots of questions, such as, 'where do you get the fox' (people not knowing that such creatures still thrive in the wild) and most people say, 'sounds like fun.'

                  Mind you, I can be a bit contrary- I'd wear my mink coat if I knew there was a PETA gathering in the neighborhood, and just dare them to ruin it and have to buy me a whole new set of minks.

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                  • #10
                    Beverley, if someone from PETA trashed your minks, I doubt you'd ever see a penny in compensation. There ARE strong feelings against what we do, and rubbing it in the wrong people's faces is going to land us in the situation England finds itself in.

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                    • #11
                      I do mention it. I'm proud of it, like talking about it, and have only had one conversation that didn't end up positive.

                      It was with a DMV employee. My license plate tag needed renewing & I had to call, got a phone rep who asked about my plate (FOXHUNT) & then he spewed a bunch of negative, close-minded stuff as I attempted to educate him as to what it's really all about. I remained as nice as pie, but didn't change his mind any.

                      Yanno, last Sun, as I was fueling up before the hunt, I was stopped by a man asking for $. I happened to have cash & gave it to him. He then asked about the plate, if Foxhunt was my last name. I explained no, it's what I do, and yes we hunt like that here in the desert, etc, etc. He said he was just a country boy from Alabama originally, grew up hunting bunnies with dawgs, & isn't the sound of hounds just the best, etc, etc!

                      You just never know who you'll meet or befriend through proclaiming your choice to hunt.

                      Although, OP, I do understand why perhaps you didn't broadcast it at first. Let them meet you/horse and then if it comes up, discuss.
                      ~ Horse Box Lovers Clique ~

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by IrishRydr View Post
                        Beverley, if someone from PETA trashed your minks, I doubt you'd ever see a penny in compensation. There ARE strong feelings against what we do, and rubbing it in the wrong people's faces is going to land us in the situation England finds itself in.

                        Ahemmmmmmmmmm! ENGLAND!!!! Please remember thatthe ban is not just ENGLAND but the whole of the UK, there is also Wales; Scotland; Northern Ireland.

                        And yes do talk about foxhunting proudly to people. Don't sweep what ever you do under the carpet. "Rubbing it in the wrong people's faces" had NOTHING at all to do with the hunting ban in the UK. The LACS terrorist bunch are just anti-society full stop, now they have banned hunting with dogs (remember it does not just encompass foxhunting) they are on a mission to ban angling (rod fishing), game bird shooting, horse racing, greyhound racing, in fact anything that PETA tries to do away with LACS follows.

                        The ban has not stopped the LACS loonies from sabbing hunts, they still draw hounds onto roads and rail tracks, they still steal hounds from kennels - just 18 months ago they stole a young beagle from a hill pack in Wales and left it tied to a fence on a remote hillside to die AND BRAGGED ABOUT IT.

                        So speak up, SUPPORT FOX HUNTING.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by IrishRydr View Post
                          Beverley, if someone from PETA trashed your minks, I doubt you'd ever see a penny in compensation. There ARE strong feelings against what we do, and rubbing it in the wrong people's faces is going to land us in the situation England finds itself in.
                          I disagree. We are Americans. Our hunting culture is grass roots, not hoity-toity. Wear your fur like a mountain man! Keep it out there, don't meekly hide from the pc police.

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                          • #14
                            Do I tell people - you bet. We are a drag hunt (live hunt in suburban MetroWest MA, not that easy!!), so we dont get the "poor fox" thing, although, I do engage people whenever possible to educate/defend our live hunting (very fortunate!) fox-hunters in the US and abroad. One reason that I try to spread the word is to promote land conservation. Many horse people that might not hunt [yet ? ] DO want to ride outside of a ring. In New England, we are losing open space and farmland at an alarming rate.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by xeroxchick View Post
                              I disagree. We are Americans. Our hunting culture is grass roots, not hoity-toity. Wear your fur like a mountain man! Keep it out there, don't meekly hide from the pc police.
                              Don't kid yourself that it can't happen here. The hoity-toities are now running things and they REALLY hate the "mountain men" type. Educate, but be careful who you piss off.

                              ETA: Ray, where are you? Concord/Carlisle/Lincoln area? *waves from Waltham* Wow, this did not seem like foxhunt country! But then I'm on the wrong side of 95...what open space?
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                              • #16
                                I absolutely do, and, like pretty much everyone else who has posted, I've found it a great way to educate people about it and at least make them think twice about any misapprehensions they might have.

                                By the way, dancer, a surprising number of "mountain men" also voted for the so-called "hoity-toities" in 2008, so maybe we need to think about the issue from another perspective than just the mountain men v. hoity-toities. Sometimes people are a little of both, especially in hard economic times! In my view, letting people know you're an unabashed foxhunter and willing to talk about it is one of the best ways to start chipping away at people's misconceptions. It won't always change minds, it won't always be pleasant, but sometimes it will. Hiding the sport away from the general public is only going to allow the antis to define it for them. So, whoever you are, whatever your political stripe, tell 'em you're a foxhunter.

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                                • #17
                                  I don't volunteer private/personal information, usually.

                                  But if someone asks, what did I do over the weekend, or what am I doing this weekend, I answer honestly.

                                  It's nothing to be ashamed of and there is no reason to hide the fact that you hunt.

                                  In social situations I usually have to get through the "horse" stuff before getting to the "hunting" stuff. And if I haven't completely bored the listener to tears after waxing poetic about my wunnerful horses, it means I need more Scotch.

                                  Seriously - you'd be amazed how many people are eager to find out about hunting from a "real" hunter.

                                  Especially if that person bears no resemblance to the stereotypes perpetuated by animal rights groups.
                                  Brothers and sisters, I bid you beware
                                  Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
                                  -Rudyard Kipling

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                                  • #18
                                    Especially if that person bears no resemblance to the stereotypes perpetuated by animal rights groups.
                                    Very, very true.

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                                    • #19
                                      Wow, I'm different.....

                                      I've experienced discrimination against foxhunting in my work environment. Bad, judgemental people who are also sarcastic about my farm or horses. This has happened enough that I wait & assess my boss & co-workers before revealing that I hunt. Sometimes I never tell.

                                      For example, when taking a day off during the week.....NEVER tell them why. That allows them to judge whether it's a good reason. And if you're mum about it; then they think you're stand off-ish/snobby. They assume all horsepeople are rich and don't really need to work or that foxhunting is for the rich etc. My last supervisor was a horseperson but judgemental about what I do and it bit me in the butt bigtime after I tried to befriend/engage her into horse stuff & conversations. She was small time arab breeder/shower.

                                      I'm a nurse & health care isn't any different than other work places. Lotsa catty women I've worked with sad to say. Too many.....
                                      I agree we're all ambassadors and I'm not ashamed...just cautious. Maybe it's because I believe that foxhunting can be controversial to many non converts. Even here in horse country!

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                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by IrishRydr View Post
                                        Beverley, if someone from PETA trashed your minks, I doubt you'd ever see a penny in compensation. There ARE strong feelings against what we do, and rubbing it in the wrong people's faces is going to land us in the situation England finds itself in.
                                        Destruction of property is destruction of property, regardless of the motivation. Not to mention the assault charges. Hubby's a judge, so yeah, I do know my rights, and how to file civil lawsuits, and how to press for criminal charges.

                                        I disagree that there are strong feelings against hunting, actually. Such feelings are only among those who subscribe to a radical animal rights agenda. I have friends who are PETA members for their own reasons, who nevertheless acknowledge that there is nothing wrong with hunting, either with guns or with hounds. It is still true, in my opinion, that the overwhelming majority of Americans really has no objection to hunting and really, truly doesn't give it any thought, particularly with our current economic woes keeping other things much higher on the list of prioriites. Our problem has been, and remains, that we are WAY behind the 'education' efforts that PETA and HSUS have been undertaking for years- they get their propaganda into the classroom and into assorted youth groups, and THAT is how they persuade people- with misinformation- that certain activities involving animals are 'cruel.'

                                        One sees the results of what these groups have done all over THESE BOARDS. Plenty of horse owners who declare that they are opposed to hunting, plenty of people who think carriages horses should no longer be used in NYC, plenty of people who want to be vets but don't want to actually have to dissect dead animals to learn what to do, and who also declare that they would 'never' euthanise an animal, they would treat at all costs, plenty of people weighing in that horse racing is cruel, eventing is cruel, slaughter is cruel, and so forth. THAT is way more scary than the few idiots that like to trash fur coats.

                                        The fact that my lifestyle choices include eating meat, wearing fur, and hunting, do not mean that I advocate cruelty to animals. To the contrary, I work hard to improve animal welfare at every turn. I see no need to apologize to anyone, or even tread lightly, when I am doing nothing legally, or morally, or ethically wrong. Basic human courtesy is involved, too- treat people the way you want to be treated. I would certainly disagree with a card carrying PETA member opposed to hunting- but I would still treat him or her with courtesy and respect, and would expect the same in return.

                                        So, when someone asks, 'what are you doing this weekend,' if fox hunting is what I'm doing, then I say so. I'm lucky to be able to engage in such a cool activity, why would I want to act like I was ashamed of it? As noted in my earlier post, I have never had a negative reaction, more often lots of questions.

                                        Finally, the problem in England is that they did nothing until it was too late. So yeah, they should have done something, even if it was just confronting the opposition whenever the opportunity arose. I fear we are too late, as well- but 'rubbing it in people's faces' hasn't been the problem, it's been lack of education about hunting (and rural life) in general.

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