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Hunters safety class in Massachusetts

Discussion in 'Politics, Elections & Legislation' started by headhunter, Sep 4, 2009.

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  1. headhunter

    headhunter Well-Known Member

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    Sorry to rant but I thought if anyone would understand my frustration, it would be you guys...

    I've been trying to get my 16 year old son a hunting license since the spring. In Massachusetts they need to take a hunters safty course before they are eligable for a license. The course is 4 nights for 3 hours and a Sat all day! How can this be such a long and chopped up class? What is there to talk about for 5 days??? They only offer it every so often through the fish and wildlife dept. The notice I got today was there is a course 30 miles away and it is in the middle of October! I had scheduled a hunt for then, and have been tring to get this done since Spring. He also is a very good student and has homework in the evening. He took the firearms safety course and has been trying to get his permit since June! This is out of control. They are slowing the process down so much that the kid doesn't even care anymore. I'm so pissed about the way goverment is controling our freedoms. I'm trying to get my kids to appeciate the traditional hunt and outdoors like so many fathers have in the past. We are losing a generation of kids. They know if they shut down one generation then they won't be able to pass it on to there kids. I'm sick about it. This has got to change. ENOUGH ALL READY !! LESS GOVERMENT IN OUR LIVES !!

    Thank you for letting me rant. Has anyone else had a similar experience?
     
  2. timb99

    timb99 Well-Known Member

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    I teach hunter ed in Kansas. You'll get no sympathy from me. I'm sure they offer classes year round, and probably have for several years. The fact that you haven't gotten around to it is not their fault.

    Usually its your state legislature that makes the rules on how long the class must be, so take it up with them, not your fish & wildlife people or the folks teaching the class. They're just following the rules. And by the way, the folks who teach the class are probably volunteers. If they think that amount of time is worth it, then it probably is. Your son will only take that class once. Those volunteer teachers probably teach the class several times a year, on their own time, for the good of the hunting tradition, and to make hunting safer.

    Take the class with him, and if the instructors in your area are half as good as the teachers I teach with here in Kansas, you'll get as much out of the class as he will. Most of the adults who have "been there and done that" tell us how much they learn and enjoy the class.

    In Kansas we offer a shortened course that requires the students to take an on-line internet-based test plus a 6-hour classroom session. Maybe such a class is available near you. Check your fish & game website.

    Bottom line, hunter ed has had a dramatic effect on the number of hunting accidents since it was made mandatory in every state. Dramatic. Hunting is safe, and its getting safer due to the effort of those volunteers in your area who take the time to teach that class. It is well worth the time you and your son will invest in it.
     
  3. pyrdek

    pyrdek Well-Known Member

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    I can't speak for either Kansas or Massachusetts but I was a Hunter Safety Instructor and Lead instructor in Pennsylvania for a number of years (over 20 total). I quit when the PA Game Commission started making so many poorly thought out changes and revisions that they began sacrificing the hunting and firearms safety educational part of the course to increase the time for ecological and political action aspects. That trend seems to be accelerating.

    In the process they also ended up driving away a number of instructors by imposing conditions that treated the VOLUNTEER instructors more like unpaid lowest level employees and not showing any real appreciation for their efforts. Since I left maybe five years ago, the number of courses offered in the area where our crew taught went from five or six in a year to two last I saw. The number of instructors went from around 8 to 10 down to three plus the conservation officer and his deputy. When I was still active as a volunteer assistant but after I turned in my official credentials (because I could no longer support the direction the course was headed because of Game Commission actions) I was told, by the new leadership, that my services were no longer needed. I could point out that two years previous I was awarded the Outstanding Instructor award for our region od the state.

    Since then I have talked to four or five instructors who were still active after I left. All of them are demoralized and disenchanted with the way the entire program is now being handled.

    So it is indeed it is entirely possible that Massachusetts is trying to go the same road with the road ending where potential new hunters become so discouraged that they just give up and go bowling or such instead.
     
  4. Kim Little

    Kim Little Member

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    I took hunter's safety in PA as a 12 year old, encouraged by my Dad. I found it to be fun and informative. I enjoyed meeting others my age with the same interests. I would encourage you to make the trip, it's worth it. Safety first. I am sorry to hear about politics entering into the course in PA. Kim :)
     
  5. ivanhoe

    ivanhoe Well-Known Member

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    headhunter try the link to the website above. You may be able to find something you can use. If you can get him to a course that better fits your schedule and you do not already belong to GOAL.

    I will expect you to join if you live in Mass and own guns you should belong anyway. You didn't say where you live or where the course you are referring to is but they list about a dozen courses for this fall some it is to late to get into some are not.

    There is also a link on the bottom of the page for all of next year. Good luck and let me know if this is any help.

    Bob Lawless
     
  6. GunDr

    GunDr Well-Known Member

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    Most certificates are honored within other states....Can you take a class in another state, that may only be a day long?

    Doug
     
  7. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Our hunters safety courses in Oregon are once a week for several weeks. I don't see where you have anything to complain about. And I took the course in 1972, again with my son, and again with my daughter. Didn't audit it with my daughter, I actively took it, even though I didn't need to. If health issues and work scheduling changes hadn't caused issues, I was working towards being an instructor.
     
  8. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Further, parents should be EMBRACNG hunters safety, not criticizing it. This course will help keep your kids and others safe. Our sport and traditions will only survive in a letiguous society if those participating are properly trained to be safe. Another aspect of hunters safety is respect for the private property of others. Frankly, I wish more adult hunters would take hunters safety. There are a lot of unsafe people out there. Also, more and more states are not issuing out of state licenses to anyone who does not have a hunters safety card, regardless of age. I foresee a day when every hunter, whatever their age, is going to have to take a class and pass.<br>
    <br>
    I was tough as nails on my kids for firearms and hunting safety. The best compliment I've had is when another adult says my kids can hunt with him any time they want, because they are trained so well in safety.<br>
    <br>
    Right now, I've taken one of my sons friends hunting who has not had hunters safety. He's old enough that he is exempt. If he wants to continue hunting with us he's going to have to make the time for a class, or do the self-paced home course under my supervision. In the meantime, he sticks to me like glue and is watched like a hawk.<br>
    <br>
    BTW, my parents had me take hunters safety in 1972 before I could even have a BB gun.<br>
    <br>
    Hunters safety - the life saved may be your own.
     
  9. timberfaller

    timberfaller Well-Known Member

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    I have been an Instructor here in WA for 20 years now, headhunter, you will get no sympathy (tim99) from me either, sorry. Life is about making choices and priority's. My classes are now about 50/50 kids and young adults, why? Because the young adults were more intersted (parents) in playing sports in high school. Our 2 classes are during the school year. In WA if you were born after 1972 you are required to take the class. Once you sign up for class you are required to "attend" all classes or you fail. We have a asigned curriculum to cover, it takes us about 18 hours to get it all covered in a class room and range setting. I team teach with 4 other instructor's and we all do it for FREE! As Chief instructor, I put in a extra 10 hours putting the class together. If you are not happy in your situation, do as I did, become and Instructor!

    Pyrdek, I agree, Here in Wa, we are micro-managed by the Dept. of Fish and Game. They are makeing it almost impossible to get new instructor's. Where it used to be a full weekend to become Certified, it will now take 2 years! No one that I've approched in an effort to get new help will do what it now takes!! OLYMPIA, ARE YOU LISTENING!

    Olympia thinks they will get a "better" more "qualified" instructor by going down their path. Kinda gives you the idea of what they think about their present Instructor's doesn't it.

    If it weren't for the kids and the grateful parents, I would quit!

    About 10 years ago almost 50% of WA cert. instructors quit because of Olympia's micro BS, We still haven't recovered from it! There are alot of towns who still don't have ONE instructor near by to put on a class. Will bureaucrat's ever get a clue? probaly not!!
     
  10. timberfaller

    timberfaller Well-Known Member

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    Oh and one other thing:

    Hands on experience WILL never be replaced by a computer!

    Computer course is available in WA, I see it as a cop out for the lazy and those that think they are above the rest of us!

    rant over!
     
  11. headhunter

    headhunter Well-Known Member

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    I see alot of you have been drinking the Koolaid. How is it that I as a parent am not qualified to teach my son how to hunt and handle a gun. Why do you think that you are so much better to show everyone the way. Everyone needs to think for themselves and not let these Liberals tell you whats best. I'm sick of the outside influence that I'm required to have on my family. Thanks to all the volenteers out there that want to help, but it should not be required to all...
    Sorry guys, I disagree
     
  12. headhunter

    headhunter Well-Known Member

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    BTW Timberfall, How is it that if you are born before 1972 that you are considered a safe hunter? It just shows the hypocrosy of all the laws , rules and regs that we are all OK with. What if you are born before 1972 you won't shot someone by accident? Crap!
     
  13. timberfaller

    timberfaller Well-Known Member

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    Headhunter, you would be one of the FEW!

    I've seen alot of parents out there that should be required to take the class over, just to be reminded of the basic safty rule! After doing this for 20 years I am now teaching their KIDS

    I been banging the heads of the Dept. that any game violation should make it a automatic retaking of the class.

    I've had people take this class just because they wanted to get better informed about handling firearms in a safe manner.

    Case in point: I was driving down a state highway one day during hunting season here. A grandfather and his grandson were sitting on the side of the road looking at some deer across the highway. HE was using his scope as a pair of binoculars!! He didn't even pull up the rifle as I drove by!!

    I turned around and gave him a good lecture on how he just put my life in danger and the bad influnce he was to his grandson.

    We are never to old to learn something, if you can't be taught, you are a lost cause!
     
  14. pyrdek

    pyrdek Well-Known Member

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    Headhunter,

    If you attend a course taught by instructors who care and are capable teachers receiving proper support, you will see why courses are a valuable adjunct to parental instruction. In the time I was teaching, there were very few courses where I, yes I said I, didn't learn something new or a better way of doing something. This learning was very often from parents who were attending with their child. I learned long ago that anyone who thinks they know everything is wrong. You, and others who think a parent is the only way to properly train a young hunter, could probably learn several things that you don't even realize you don't know.

    There is also a chance to see why some parents simply can not train their child. They may never have learned themselves, or, even worse, they may have developed bad habits or procedures that are unsafe to them, their child and others. If they are not exposed to a proper way to do something, they may never learn and could continue to hand down unsafe practices to the next generation.

    One of the things that tend to prove this point is that the average age of hunting safety incidents (I do not call them accidents because most of the time they would have been avoidable had proper safety practices been followed.) has been and continues to be from the group where hunting safety training was not mandatory.

    When some parent attending the class relates an experience where safety may have been compromised and the result was an injury to someone, it tends to stick a bit better with the youngsters. Some kids think instructors (or their parents if you prefer) try to impose something that the kids feel is to stringent. When another class member talks about a lack of safety being followed and subsequent injuries, it reinforces what is being instructed.

    If you think you alone can do everything to keep your kid safe, and resent being inconvenienced by having to attend a class where someone else might improve on what you think is the "best way" to teach your kid, it raises the question if that is ego, arrogance or lack of knowledge showing through. Having your child injured or killed because of a lack of, incorrect or inadequate instruction is a terrible price to pay to learn you might have been wrong!
     
  15. timb99

    timb99 Well-Known Member

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    Well said, pyrdek. Couldn't have said it better myself.

    headhunter, you sound like a prime candidate for a refresher course.
     
  16. headhunter

    headhunter Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like we should all listen to "You"
     
  17. ivanhoe

    ivanhoe Well-Known Member

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    Amazing absolutely amazing. headhunter did you find a course for your son that was more suitable to you schedule and a easier travel, OR NOT?

    Personally I don't give a rat's Azz who's ego is bruised or who thinks they are the Cock of the walk in this pizzing contest. The important thing here is that the boy gets to take a course!!!!!!!!!!!!

    If you guy think, and want to act like a bunch of two year olds over who should be allowed to teach the youngsters and who shouldn't that your business. I would like to know if my efforts in trying to supply the right information. Were of help or not? if so I will back out of here and allow you children to continue to play this stupid game.

    Who is the cock of the walk, If not I would suggest that you take care of business before you give us your me,me,me, attitude.

    There is no right and wrong about this when you all agreed to allow the states you live in tell you what you will do and what you won't do. You all became wrong. Now it doesn't matter the damage is done.

    What matters here is your sons rights to hunt if he need to be taught safety then lets concentrate on that for now. Later you guys can all step off the ten paces and show everyone who is the smartest.

    You guy from the left coast that don't have any knowledge of what goes on here on the right coast shouldn't be in here agitating someone who is already upset with the system as it is. Which I might add you people have absolutely no clue what goes on in this state. About anything.

    Bob Lawless
     
  18. headhunter

    headhunter Well-Known Member

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    Whatever guys.. I've just had enough of this socialist goverment controling my freedoms. They are involved in my business and personal life, and I'm tired of someone telling me what's good for me. Not only that, but they want the money you make by busting your ass every day. then they are spending the money your grandchildren are going to make. I've just had enough. Little by little everyone turns into sheep and just follow along and don't question anything. Sorry for the rant. I guess this whole thing just set me off. I don't want to offend anyone, but just step back and look at the big picture.
     
  19. timb99

    timb99 Well-Known Member

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    headhunter,

    You started off your original post saying, "Sorry to rant but I thought if anyone would understand my frustration, it would be you guys..."

    We understand. You are frustrated. Yeah, 5 class sessions is a little much. We only require 10.5 hours here in Kansas for conventional classes.

    Unlike what one poster said, you and your son do not have a "right" to hunt. Its a privilege, just like a driver's license. And like a driver's license, you have to take a test before you get to drive. Well, a hunter ed class is part of the requirement for getting a hunting license. Its a requirement in every state in the USA. They all require it.

    And it does make a difference. In years before hunter ed was required, opening day of deer season was a pretty dangerous day. People died.

    Nowadays, in Kansas, if we have 20 reportable incidents a year, its a bad year.

    Hunting is safe, and getting safer, in large part due to the requirement to take hunter education classes.

    These are good classes, and well worth taking, even if it wasn't a requirement. Your son will learn far more in the class than you can teach him yourself. Take it with him.

    I'll be astonished if you don't walk out of that class having 1) learned something good that you didn't already know and 2) really happy you took the class with your son. It'll be good bonding time for the both of you.

    BTW, I have no idea what Bob Lawless said, or meant.
     
  20. headhunter

    headhunter Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, Im not sure either. I'm disappointed that we have been trying to do what is required to lawfully obtain a hunting license for the last 5 months and we are no closer than when we started. I booked a hunt in the fall and I'll have to cancell. The class would be fine, but don't run everyone through the ringer. Maybe it is just the area where I live. (cape cod) They are so out of touch with traditional life of hunting and fishing.
     
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