It seems the same old conversations are had this time every year with regards to the rights of the shooters, the rights of the ducks and the rights of the things that shooters think are ducks but which are just some other water-bird hanging out with ducks.
In the 80s and 90s, I was a bird-watcher.This isn't really the case any more, as I simply don't have the time or the funds to get to the places I would need/like to go to in order to see things I haven't already seen. This makes me one of those 'twitcher' types.
But my bird-watching was also the beginning of my interest in the environment and its protection. So being an anti-duck season kind of guy is the way I lean.
So this morning when a workmate asked me about the duck season, I gave my usual response....roughly cobbled together in the following paragraph.
"I'm not a fan of duck shooting because the people who shoot the ducks don't tend to be terribly discerning with either the aim, ability to identify what they are aiming at, or their respect for the laws relating to what they are shooting"
Something like that anyway.
But then I thought about it some more when my workmate asked me if the ducks in Chinese Restaurants were the same as the ones being shot.
No, they're not. Chinese Restaurants seem to use domestic ducks, the sort you might think about when you see Donald Duck.
So then why do people want to go and shoot ducks? I mean, there are clearly ducks farmed for eating, why the need to go and shoot wild ducks?
This got me thinking about the sort of people who choose to go and shoot something.
For starters, they want to shoot something.
Secondly, they're prepared to kill something.
Then, they want to eat that something.
And this is where I'm different to these people.
The reason I'm happy to eat meat is because I don't think about where it's coming from. Sure, I know where it comes from, but I don't wish to think about a poor ol' sheep or cow being killed simply so I can eat it.
If we all had to kill and eat our own meat, I'd be a vegetarian. Simple as that.
And I think this is the difference between me and a duck shooter.
Nobody in Australia has to go kill their own food in order to survive.
It's why we go to the Supermarket or Butcher.
But duck shooters are choosing to go and kill something. Why? Well presumably they like the taste of duck.
But if I liked the taste of duck, I'd go to a restaurant and eat it, or buy it from the market.
I don't like to kill animals. I'll kill a mosquito for sure, those things are responsible for more human sickness and death than anything else, so I'm kind of helping out, but a duck?
I know my preparedness to eat something someone else has killed makes me a hypocrite, but it's a happy medium in a tricky debate.
Not quite ignorance is bliss, but turning a blind eye.