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Virginia Hunters Keep Ban on Sunday Hunting

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February 03, 2012

Virginia Hunters Keep Ban on Sunday Hunting

--Chad Love

Sorry, Virginia hunters. It looks like the "peace and quiet" crowd has come out on top in your state's Sunday hunting debate.

From this story on gazettevirginian.com:

Rural Virginia will enjoy peace and quiet with respite from hunters for at least another year, after a House Agriculture, Chesapeake and Natural Resources subcommittee voted to table three bills that would have repealed or rolled back the state’s current ban on Sunday hunting. A member of that subcommittee, 60th District House representative James Edmunds, said Thursday there was a “tremendous amount of opposition” to Sunday hunting.

“Three of the four house bills that came forward were taken off the table by the patron,” said Edmunds. “The only one that survived to even be heard by committee was one to allow Sunday hunting in Planning District 8 in Northern Virginia, but we felt that was still the camel’s nose under the tent.

“We killed that 7-0.” Edmunds, an avid hunter, has nonetheless stated his opposition to Sunday hunting “People in rural Virginia especially recognize [Sunday] as a day of peace, and hunters who hunt in that area didn’t want it,” Edmunds said. “It’s been up before us the past 15-16 years, and it’s died every year.” Virginia is one of 11 states that prohibit hunting on Sundays, and rural-based organizations such as Virginia Farm Bureau have stated their opposition to Sunday hunting.

Your thoughts?

 

Comments (37)

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from 60256 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

I live in North Dakota, and we have legal Sunday hunting, and I really enjoy it. We have deer camp on opening weekend of gun season and we spend friday noon until sunday sundown hunting.

The whole idea of "peace and quiet" is kind of ridiculous. Rural America is like complete silence compared to any city.

Nate

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from CL3 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Wonder how it's going to play out in PA. There may be a lot more hunters in PA, but the Farm Bureau here also seems to have a lot of sway still.

Too bad... people can hike and horseback ride on public land or buy alcohol on Sundays, but private land owners can't hunt on their own land?

I would love to be able to hunt Sunday in my own dang state. I see a bunch of the PA state legislators have hunting leases in Ohio! How's that PA businesses?!

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from vasportsman wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

@#$%!

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from VAHunter540 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Disappointing. It was more of a witch hunt than anything else. The Non-Hunters have every right to use the National Forests, but they made it seem like hunters are just out there hiding behind every tree and shooting at anything that moves with no regard for people. Disappointing lack of support shown by Virginia hunters and a stronger showing by the non-hunters. I was really hoping there could be some middle ground reached and Sunday hunting would be allowed on private land at least.

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from Sarge01 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Must be a Virginia thing, I am next door in West Virginia and I don't think that we will ever hunt on Sunday. They put it up to a vote in each of the 55 counties and the people voted to hunt in 11 of the 55 counties and the rest of the counties voted not to hunt on Sunday. I guess that was a fair way of doing things. I have always said that we are in the "Bible Belt" and that is one of the main reasons that Sunday hunting gets defeated.

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from Walt Smith wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Makes me happy to be a Michagander! Why don't they just move church service to Monday night??

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from fezzant wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

I never understood the restrictions on Sunday hunting, or most of the other so-called "Blue Laws."

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from horseman308 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

I don't usually hunt on Sundays 'cause I'm in church. But occasionally, I'll go during a really hot point in the season; at least I used to when I lived in MI and TN. I guess that if the majority of Virginians (including hunters) really don't want Sunday hunting, then that's the democratic process at work and I'll accept it.

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from EpicAwesomeGirl wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

That is one of the stupidest things I've ever heard. Some people only get Sunday off of work.

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from EpicAwesomeGirl wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

That is one of the stupidest things I've ever heard. Some people only get Sunday off of work.

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from Roderick K. Purcell wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

It is better to go hunting on Sunday and think of God than to go to church and think of hunting. Sorry Virginia. Try again!

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from dleurquin wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

It doesn't make sense to me, unless it's in highly congested areas where non hunters hiking in the woods could realistically come in contact with hunters with little effort. That's not an issue in most areas, is it?

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from steve182 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

That's a shame. Bowhunting at least is legal here on Sundays

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from JohnR wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

It looks like ignorance rules again. FWIW I opine that the anti-hunting groups no doubt support not hunting on any day they can see it banned, but some of the blame goes right back to the hunters themselves.
We have the same issue here in NC although one can legally bowhunt on private property on Sundays. I have heard the same ridiculous argument that the game also needs a day of rest. I have stated this in another post here that every day of the week is a day of survival for all game species.
As far as the subject of religion is concerned, church attendance would not necessarily suffer. I go to church, and if I could hunt on Sunday, I would go for an evening hunt because I am out of church by 12:00 or 12:30.
Those that would be dogmatic fundamentalists about doing things on Sunday would be well advised that the sabbath as originally observed by the Hebrews was on Saturday.
I am not planning to get into a theological debate so if anyone disagrees, fine. I most likely will not respond.
As was posted by EpicAwesomeGirl, Sunday is one of the few days some people have to hunt.
Could it possibly be selfish motives that are really behind the motives for not allowing hunting on Sundays?
I can't answer that question, but until I see some empirical data presented why Sunday hunting is bad for either the hunters or the hunted, any other reason is misguided at the least.

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from jbird wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Thank God I don't live in Virginia!

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from jbird wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Thank God I don't live in Virginia!

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from coachsjike wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

i think its an awful idea. not everyone can afford to take off from work mon thru sat especially with the economy as bad as it is. sunday is the only day that anyone is off.

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from sfleader1926 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Can't hunt on Sundays in Virginia because of the noise.

So where is the law that says you can't play your car radio loud. Sure there is a noise abatment law in Virginia but its not enforced. (Selective enforcement? or clear discrimination against us law abiding folks who enjoy hunters)

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from sfleader1926 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Hunting)
typo

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from slickfly wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

I cannot stand this ridiculous law. Having lived in VA for almost three years now, I am ready to move.

1. For the Virginians that say they want a day of rest for the animals...don't go birding, hiking, or running through the woods on Sunday because you'll scare the wildlife.

2. For the Virginians that say they want a day of peace and quite with no shooting...there's no law that says I can't shoot my gun on Sundays.

3. For the Virginians that want a day for their families...have a day with your family, but let me choose how to live my life.

4. For the Virginians that say they need at least one day of rest...what about the people that work 6 days a week and only get Sundays off?

5. For the Virginians that say they need at least one day a week they can go out and feel safe from hunters...I say, I want one day I can go hunting without running into a dog walker.

6. For the Virginians that want to see wildlife in their backyard...be thankful there are hunters who help fund departments and agencies to protect wildlife and habitat so we actually have something for the future.

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from JCSoutdoorsman wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

I'm glad I don't live in Virginia.

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from Hondarider3278 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Here in Indiana it sucks because if you do get a deer or whatnot, every where is closed so there's no where to check your deer in, And with school and work on Monday we have no time to check in within the 48 hour rule.I kinda like this law.

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from Larry Ehlert wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

It IS a free country, they have the right to govern themselves. If they don't want to hunt on Sundays, that is there choice, no matter how much I hate it or disagree. My question would be what does the majority want? Why not just vote on it? IF this was in my state, I'd argue that it doesn't have to be against the law for anyone not to hunt on Sunday. No hunting on Sunday is a religious belief, this country was founded upon the notion of freedom of religion, Your religion should not be my law. I won't make you worship my God, don't try to make me worship yours. Don't tell me how to be a good christian, you do your thing, let me do mine.

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from PigHunter wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

I like what Roderick said! We can hunt on Sundays in Alabama and I do on a regular basis.

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from David Bays Jr wrote 2 years 9 weeks ago

i live in northeast Tennessee on the Virginia state line. I cannot understand why Viginia would keep this stupid law, the aforementioned reason's stated by the politicians are bull. But the biggest thing i don't understand is why the would take money out of they're own pockets. Think about how much extra money is generated in that extra day of hunting, extra snacks at stores, extra gas traveling to hunting destinations, extra ammunition, extra nights at hunting logdes/ motels, ect. ect.. In these trying times would'nt you think they would want this... seems silly to me , but that is why i live on this side of the state line.

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from Northern Virgin... wrote 2 years 9 weeks ago

SB464 is still alive (passed by the State Senate) and will be heard by the House of Delegates in the next week or so.

Please help us lift the ban by emailing the following Delegates and indicating your desire to hunt on Sunday in VA.

Delegate Tony Wilt
DelTWilt@house.virginia.gov

Delegate Matt Farris
DelMFariss@house.virginia.gov

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from Tony Haskins wrote 2 years 9 weeks ago

As a Virginia hunter and father of a 15 year old who lives eats and breathes hunting, I am actually glad that SB464 has been tabled again this year because I am also a committed "churchgoer" and (selfishly) do not want to have that argument every Saturday night. Although Sunday hunting was provisioned for still hunting only, everyone knows that some hunters would still be using dogs to move deer and in that sense I believe it is better for the deer to have a day "off".

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from Northern Virgin... wrote 2 years 9 weeks ago

Tony,

SB464 was not tabled, it is stil alive and well.

What about the rest of us that can go to Mass on Saturday, or not go to church at all. It is a free country. Deer do not get a day of rest every, wild animals compete for their lives every day.

How in the world can people in more than 40 other states manage Sunday hunting and still go to church? States where I would say the religious aspect is as important if not moreso than in VA?

Why can't your boy go hunting early on Sunday and still make the noon service? Or vice versa?

Why is hunting any different than watching TV or riding a bike or fishing?

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from clgoogl wrote 2 years 9 weeks ago

It is now HB 921 in front of the House of Delegates. If you're a Virginian, whether you agree or not, exercise your right. Find out who your delegate is at http://dela.state.va.us and use the Who's my delegate link.

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from Grdnlver57 wrote 2 years 9 weeks ago

I have read all comments posted and can see both sides of the issue. I am a non-hunter but I also teach hunter's education and have heard the debate in many of the classes held. Unfortunately, the disrespectful or dangerous actions of a few can taint the reputation of the whole group.

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from Charles G. Goode Jr. wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

I would atleast like to see Bow hunting on Sundays, in Virginia. North Carolina has passed it. Then there will still be piece and quit in the surrounding area!

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from Braves12 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

While these bills do not allow for hunting with hounds/dogs, I think many Virginians oppose this bill because of their feelings on some hunter's and their use of dogs, "road hunting", and trespass. It is unfortunate that the pass time/tradition of hunting is dwindling, but as a VA representative pointed out the number of hunters has steadily decreased while VA's population has risen 65%. This inevitably puts more landowners right next to hunt clubs which tends to build friction/conflict. I agree with many proponents of these bills, this is a property rights issue, however until the property rights of non-hunting/still hunting landowner's is treated with the same sanctity which hound hunter's view their own rights, we will most often find many residents opposed to any policy increasing the likelihood of friction within one's own community or neighborhood.

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from vasportsman wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

It's all about the $, who can provide more funds for your next re-election campaign, the more dollars you throw at a situation, the more you can have your way, same everywhere even in DC, Virginia still has groups with deep pockets that want to make sure it never passes, I think we need an overhaul.

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from fish2012 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

This was not democracy in action. More Virginians support Sunday hunting than oppose it. Many more Republicans support than oppose, so please explain why the four men who voted it down are all Republicans and all avid hunters? This had everything to do with cronyism, political payback and favoritism. Ugly, nasty politics at its worst.
The deer hound coalition has its back against the wall. Their days are numbered and it has nothing to do with Sunday hunting.

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from Daniel Adair wrote 1 year 23 weeks ago

we should go find a church and set up a shooting range as close as possible and only have it opened on sunday, we can be ridicules to

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from DRS wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

Hunting is on the decline in Virginia and is on a severe downward trajectory. Recently, thoughtful legislation has been proposed to try to stem this decline and remove the commonwealth's prohibition on Sunday hunting. The number of individuals purchasing Virginia hunting licenses has declined well over 50 percent, from 500,000 in the 1970s to around 220,000 today. Contrast that with the increase in the general population of Virginia during that same time, which rose by 65 percent to more than 7.7 million. That staggering statistic should not be lost in this discussion, and I am afraid that my colleague, Del. Lee Ware, missed the point on what part of the "common good" he focused on in his op-ed last week.

Ware's commentary focuses on the common good of hikers, horseback riders and bird watchers to enjoy one day of peace; after all, hunters already get six days per week. This argument only makes sense at first blush. The fact is that the general firearm season — during which 90 percent of the "heavy" hunting is done in Virginia — lasts only 49 days. Do the math — horse enthusiasts, bird-watchers and hikers have the woods effectively to themselves for the remaining 316 days, and seven days per week at that. They do not lack for alone time in the woods and, if they are using wildlife management areas, they are enjoying lands paid for by the license fees of hunters and fishermen.

Meanwhile, hunters must operate under limited and restricted time and opportunities to hunt. In a survey by the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (DGIF), one of the leading reasons given for not renewing a hunting license was lack of time. Families are busier, after-school activities are taking more and more time, and in this economy, many households see both parents working. To many Virginians, it is simply not worth the cost to purchase a license if they and their children are only able to hunt a few days per season.

Unfortunately, what does not accompany this busier lifestyle is the ability to pass along hunting to our children. We have lost a generation of children to Xboxes, Wiis and iPhones. Rather than learn to throw a football, our children learn to play Madden. Rather than learn to shoot a gun, our children learn to play Medal of Honor or Halo. They are simulating real life instead of living. In addition, children cannot take a day off from school to hunt, and their Saturdays are so programmed with "mandatory" athletic activities — all of which coincide with the hunting season — that Sunday is the only alternative for hunting.

The lessons of hunting — the solitude, patience, appreciation of the environment and outdoors, the desire to conserve for the future — these are all values that are taught and appreciated by the hunting community. Teddy Roosevelt, perhaps this nation's most famous conservationist, was first and foremost an avid hunter. The commonwealth's past legislative actions reveal that maintaining the tradition of hunting is a priority for the common good. The state offers discounted lifetime hunting licenses if purchased for a person under 2 years old, and recently began offering apprentice licenses to encourage non-hunters to participate in hunting. We have protected, through an amendment to the Constitution of Virginia, our desire to keep the tradition of hunting alive in Virginia. However, from the critical decline in the number of hunters, it is quite obvious that these actions are not enough to save the tradition, and its loss threatens an integral part of the DGIF's wildlife management plan and the state's conservation efforts.

The Virginia Farm Bureau has opposed Sunday-hunting proposals, and their reasoning perplexes. It advocates for agricultural best-management practices, but opposes Sunday hunting, which is part of DGIF's deer management plan. Recognizing the damage that deer cause to crops, The Virginia Farm Bureau supports increased out-of-season kill permits but opposes an extra hunting day — Sunday — to manage the deer population. And most recently, the Farm Bureau even opposed allowing restricted Sunday hunting on private property by the landowner and his or her immediate family.

Despite the fact that patrons of Sunday hunting legislation have offered to exclude deer hunting with hounds on Sundays, the Virginia Hunting Dog Alliance has swayed some legislators into believing that permitting hunting on Sunday will have a negative long-term effect on hunting. Studies have shown the opposite. The biggest detriment to hunting is too little access and opportunity, not too much. The common good as dictated by millions of non-hunting Virginians will one day no longer tolerate their traditions unless license sales recover, and recover quickly.

Sunday hunting is not just an issue facing rural legislators. There are many hunters who now, because of work obligations, live in suburbs and cities. Some have kept the old family farm or have purchased rural land for the express purpose of wildlife conservation — again, for the common good. Adding an extra day to the hunting week will double the time available to these hunters — many of whom are my constituents — to pass along the tradition.

The commonwealth allows the sale of alcohol, off-track betting and every form of sporting event and retail activity imaginable to occur on Sunday; isn't it time to address the last remaining vestige of the blue laws, for the common good? A word of caution to all hunters: Anti-hunting groups support the ban on Sunday hunting because they recognize hunting is dying out in Virginia. Without legalizing some limited form of hunting on Sunday, that trend will continue. Forty-four states allow some form of Sunday hunting, with the overwhelming majority allowing "unlimited." For the common good, it may be time to amend one tradition in order to save another for future generations.

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from DennyF wrote 1 year 12 weeks ago

"Wonder how it's going to play out in PA. There may be a lot more hunters in PA, but the Farm Bureau here also seems to have a lot of sway still."

Its not just the farm bureau. Many who have nothing to do with them don't support it. Even many hunters here do NOT support it. Due unfortunately to the pgc antideer agenda and them just pushing for this for that purpose alone.

"I would love to be able to hunt Sunday in my own dang state. I see a bunch of the PA state legislators have hunting leases in Ohio! How's that PA businesses?!"

That is because of the failed Pa deer plan. I know LOTS of people who now hunt Ohio, and it doesnt have much to do with Sunday hunting, and they will tell you it has EVERYTHING to do with what pgc has done to our deer herds!

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from DennyF wrote 1 year 12 weeks ago

"Wonder how it's going to play out in PA. There may be a lot more hunters in PA, but the Farm Bureau here also seems to have a lot of sway still."

Its not just the farm bureau. Many who have nothing to do with them don't support it. Even many hunters here do NOT support it. Due unfortunately to the pgc antideer agenda and them just pushing for this for that purpose alone.

"I would love to be able to hunt Sunday in my own dang state. I see a bunch of the PA state legislators have hunting leases in Ohio! How's that PA businesses?!"

That is because of the failed Pa deer plan. I know LOTS of people who now hunt Ohio, and it doesnt have much to do with Sunday hunting, and they will tell you it has EVERYTHING to do with what pgc has done to our deer herds!

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from Walt Smith wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Makes me happy to be a Michagander! Why don't they just move church service to Monday night??

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from JohnR wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

It looks like ignorance rules again. FWIW I opine that the anti-hunting groups no doubt support not hunting on any day they can see it banned, but some of the blame goes right back to the hunters themselves.
We have the same issue here in NC although one can legally bowhunt on private property on Sundays. I have heard the same ridiculous argument that the game also needs a day of rest. I have stated this in another post here that every day of the week is a day of survival for all game species.
As far as the subject of religion is concerned, church attendance would not necessarily suffer. I go to church, and if I could hunt on Sunday, I would go for an evening hunt because I am out of church by 12:00 or 12:30.
Those that would be dogmatic fundamentalists about doing things on Sunday would be well advised that the sabbath as originally observed by the Hebrews was on Saturday.
I am not planning to get into a theological debate so if anyone disagrees, fine. I most likely will not respond.
As was posted by EpicAwesomeGirl, Sunday is one of the few days some people have to hunt.
Could it possibly be selfish motives that are really behind the motives for not allowing hunting on Sundays?
I can't answer that question, but until I see some empirical data presented why Sunday hunting is bad for either the hunters or the hunted, any other reason is misguided at the least.

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from VAHunter540 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Disappointing. It was more of a witch hunt than anything else. The Non-Hunters have every right to use the National Forests, but they made it seem like hunters are just out there hiding behind every tree and shooting at anything that moves with no regard for people. Disappointing lack of support shown by Virginia hunters and a stronger showing by the non-hunters. I was really hoping there could be some middle ground reached and Sunday hunting would be allowed on private land at least.

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from Roderick K. Purcell wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

It is better to go hunting on Sunday and think of God than to go to church and think of hunting. Sorry Virginia. Try again!

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from fezzant wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

I never understood the restrictions on Sunday hunting, or most of the other so-called "Blue Laws."

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from Larry Ehlert wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

It IS a free country, they have the right to govern themselves. If they don't want to hunt on Sundays, that is there choice, no matter how much I hate it or disagree. My question would be what does the majority want? Why not just vote on it? IF this was in my state, I'd argue that it doesn't have to be against the law for anyone not to hunt on Sunday. No hunting on Sunday is a religious belief, this country was founded upon the notion of freedom of religion, Your religion should not be my law. I won't make you worship my God, don't try to make me worship yours. Don't tell me how to be a good christian, you do your thing, let me do mine.

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from 60256 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

I live in North Dakota, and we have legal Sunday hunting, and I really enjoy it. We have deer camp on opening weekend of gun season and we spend friday noon until sunday sundown hunting.

The whole idea of "peace and quiet" is kind of ridiculous. Rural America is like complete silence compared to any city.

Nate

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from steve182 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

That's a shame. Bowhunting at least is legal here on Sundays

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from jbird wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Thank God I don't live in Virginia!

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from vasportsman wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

@#$%!

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from EpicAwesomeGirl wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

That is one of the stupidest things I've ever heard. Some people only get Sunday off of work.

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from dleurquin wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

It doesn't make sense to me, unless it's in highly congested areas where non hunters hiking in the woods could realistically come in contact with hunters with little effort. That's not an issue in most areas, is it?

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from JCSoutdoorsman wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

I'm glad I don't live in Virginia.

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from David Bays Jr wrote 2 years 9 weeks ago

i live in northeast Tennessee on the Virginia state line. I cannot understand why Viginia would keep this stupid law, the aforementioned reason's stated by the politicians are bull. But the biggest thing i don't understand is why the would take money out of they're own pockets. Think about how much extra money is generated in that extra day of hunting, extra snacks at stores, extra gas traveling to hunting destinations, extra ammunition, extra nights at hunting logdes/ motels, ect. ect.. In these trying times would'nt you think they would want this... seems silly to me , but that is why i live on this side of the state line.

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from Tony Haskins wrote 2 years 9 weeks ago

As a Virginia hunter and father of a 15 year old who lives eats and breathes hunting, I am actually glad that SB464 has been tabled again this year because I am also a committed "churchgoer" and (selfishly) do not want to have that argument every Saturday night. Although Sunday hunting was provisioned for still hunting only, everyone knows that some hunters would still be using dogs to move deer and in that sense I believe it is better for the deer to have a day "off".

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from horseman308 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

I don't usually hunt on Sundays 'cause I'm in church. But occasionally, I'll go during a really hot point in the season; at least I used to when I lived in MI and TN. I guess that if the majority of Virginians (including hunters) really don't want Sunday hunting, then that's the democratic process at work and I'll accept it.

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from jbird wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Thank God I don't live in Virginia!

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from Sarge01 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Must be a Virginia thing, I am next door in West Virginia and I don't think that we will ever hunt on Sunday. They put it up to a vote in each of the 55 counties and the people voted to hunt in 11 of the 55 counties and the rest of the counties voted not to hunt on Sunday. I guess that was a fair way of doing things. I have always said that we are in the "Bible Belt" and that is one of the main reasons that Sunday hunting gets defeated.

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from PigHunter wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

I like what Roderick said! We can hunt on Sundays in Alabama and I do on a regular basis.

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from vasportsman wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

It's all about the $, who can provide more funds for your next re-election campaign, the more dollars you throw at a situation, the more you can have your way, same everywhere even in DC, Virginia still has groups with deep pockets that want to make sure it never passes, I think we need an overhaul.

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from coachsjike wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

i think its an awful idea. not everyone can afford to take off from work mon thru sat especially with the economy as bad as it is. sunday is the only day that anyone is off.

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from CL3 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Wonder how it's going to play out in PA. There may be a lot more hunters in PA, but the Farm Bureau here also seems to have a lot of sway still.

Too bad... people can hike and horseback ride on public land or buy alcohol on Sundays, but private land owners can't hunt on their own land?

I would love to be able to hunt Sunday in my own dang state. I see a bunch of the PA state legislators have hunting leases in Ohio! How's that PA businesses?!

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from slickfly wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

I cannot stand this ridiculous law. Having lived in VA for almost three years now, I am ready to move.

1. For the Virginians that say they want a day of rest for the animals...don't go birding, hiking, or running through the woods on Sunday because you'll scare the wildlife.

2. For the Virginians that say they want a day of peace and quite with no shooting...there's no law that says I can't shoot my gun on Sundays.

3. For the Virginians that want a day for their families...have a day with your family, but let me choose how to live my life.

4. For the Virginians that say they need at least one day of rest...what about the people that work 6 days a week and only get Sundays off?

5. For the Virginians that say they need at least one day a week they can go out and feel safe from hunters...I say, I want one day I can go hunting without running into a dog walker.

6. For the Virginians that want to see wildlife in their backyard...be thankful there are hunters who help fund departments and agencies to protect wildlife and habitat so we actually have something for the future.

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from Hondarider3278 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Here in Indiana it sucks because if you do get a deer or whatnot, every where is closed so there's no where to check your deer in, And with school and work on Monday we have no time to check in within the 48 hour rule.I kinda like this law.

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from EpicAwesomeGirl wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

That is one of the stupidest things I've ever heard. Some people only get Sunday off of work.

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from clgoogl wrote 2 years 9 weeks ago

It is now HB 921 in front of the House of Delegates. If you're a Virginian, whether you agree or not, exercise your right. Find out who your delegate is at http://dela.state.va.us and use the Who's my delegate link.

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from sfleader1926 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Hunting)
typo

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from Northern Virgin... wrote 2 years 9 weeks ago

SB464 is still alive (passed by the State Senate) and will be heard by the House of Delegates in the next week or so.

Please help us lift the ban by emailing the following Delegates and indicating your desire to hunt on Sunday in VA.

Delegate Tony Wilt
DelTWilt@house.virginia.gov

Delegate Matt Farris
DelMFariss@house.virginia.gov

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from Northern Virgin... wrote 2 years 9 weeks ago

Tony,

SB464 was not tabled, it is stil alive and well.

What about the rest of us that can go to Mass on Saturday, or not go to church at all. It is a free country. Deer do not get a day of rest every, wild animals compete for their lives every day.

How in the world can people in more than 40 other states manage Sunday hunting and still go to church? States where I would say the religious aspect is as important if not moreso than in VA?

Why can't your boy go hunting early on Sunday and still make the noon service? Or vice versa?

Why is hunting any different than watching TV or riding a bike or fishing?

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from Grdnlver57 wrote 2 years 9 weeks ago

I have read all comments posted and can see both sides of the issue. I am a non-hunter but I also teach hunter's education and have heard the debate in many of the classes held. Unfortunately, the disrespectful or dangerous actions of a few can taint the reputation of the whole group.

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from Charles G. Goode Jr. wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

I would atleast like to see Bow hunting on Sundays, in Virginia. North Carolina has passed it. Then there will still be piece and quit in the surrounding area!

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from Braves12 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

While these bills do not allow for hunting with hounds/dogs, I think many Virginians oppose this bill because of their feelings on some hunter's and their use of dogs, "road hunting", and trespass. It is unfortunate that the pass time/tradition of hunting is dwindling, but as a VA representative pointed out the number of hunters has steadily decreased while VA's population has risen 65%. This inevitably puts more landowners right next to hunt clubs which tends to build friction/conflict. I agree with many proponents of these bills, this is a property rights issue, however until the property rights of non-hunting/still hunting landowner's is treated with the same sanctity which hound hunter's view their own rights, we will most often find many residents opposed to any policy increasing the likelihood of friction within one's own community or neighborhood.

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from fish2012 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

This was not democracy in action. More Virginians support Sunday hunting than oppose it. Many more Republicans support than oppose, so please explain why the four men who voted it down are all Republicans and all avid hunters? This had everything to do with cronyism, political payback and favoritism. Ugly, nasty politics at its worst.
The deer hound coalition has its back against the wall. Their days are numbered and it has nothing to do with Sunday hunting.

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from Daniel Adair wrote 1 year 23 weeks ago

we should go find a church and set up a shooting range as close as possible and only have it opened on sunday, we can be ridicules to

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from DRS wrote 1 year 22 weeks ago

Hunting is on the decline in Virginia and is on a severe downward trajectory. Recently, thoughtful legislation has been proposed to try to stem this decline and remove the commonwealth's prohibition on Sunday hunting. The number of individuals purchasing Virginia hunting licenses has declined well over 50 percent, from 500,000 in the 1970s to around 220,000 today. Contrast that with the increase in the general population of Virginia during that same time, which rose by 65 percent to more than 7.7 million. That staggering statistic should not be lost in this discussion, and I am afraid that my colleague, Del. Lee Ware, missed the point on what part of the "common good" he focused on in his op-ed last week.

Ware's commentary focuses on the common good of hikers, horseback riders and bird watchers to enjoy one day of peace; after all, hunters already get six days per week. This argument only makes sense at first blush. The fact is that the general firearm season — during which 90 percent of the "heavy" hunting is done in Virginia — lasts only 49 days. Do the math — horse enthusiasts, bird-watchers and hikers have the woods effectively to themselves for the remaining 316 days, and seven days per week at that. They do not lack for alone time in the woods and, if they are using wildlife management areas, they are enjoying lands paid for by the license fees of hunters and fishermen.

Meanwhile, hunters must operate under limited and restricted time and opportunities to hunt. In a survey by the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (DGIF), one of the leading reasons given for not renewing a hunting license was lack of time. Families are busier, after-school activities are taking more and more time, and in this economy, many households see both parents working. To many Virginians, it is simply not worth the cost to purchase a license if they and their children are only able to hunt a few days per season.

Unfortunately, what does not accompany this busier lifestyle is the ability to pass along hunting to our children. We have lost a generation of children to Xboxes, Wiis and iPhones. Rather than learn to throw a football, our children learn to play Madden. Rather than learn to shoot a gun, our children learn to play Medal of Honor or Halo. They are simulating real life instead of living. In addition, children cannot take a day off from school to hunt, and their Saturdays are so programmed with "mandatory" athletic activities — all of which coincide with the hunting season — that Sunday is the only alternative for hunting.

The lessons of hunting — the solitude, patience, appreciation of the environment and outdoors, the desire to conserve for the future — these are all values that are taught and appreciated by the hunting community. Teddy Roosevelt, perhaps this nation's most famous conservationist, was first and foremost an avid hunter. The commonwealth's past legislative actions reveal that maintaining the tradition of hunting is a priority for the common good. The state offers discounted lifetime hunting licenses if purchased for a person under 2 years old, and recently began offering apprentice licenses to encourage non-hunters to participate in hunting. We have protected, through an amendment to the Constitution of Virginia, our desire to keep the tradition of hunting alive in Virginia. However, from the critical decline in the number of hunters, it is quite obvious that these actions are not enough to save the tradition, and its loss threatens an integral part of the DGIF's wildlife management plan and the state's conservation efforts.

The Virginia Farm Bureau has opposed Sunday-hunting proposals, and their reasoning perplexes. It advocates for agricultural best-management practices, but opposes Sunday hunting, which is part of DGIF's deer management plan. Recognizing the damage that deer cause to crops, The Virginia Farm Bureau supports increased out-of-season kill permits but opposes an extra hunting day — Sunday — to manage the deer population. And most recently, the Farm Bureau even opposed allowing restricted Sunday hunting on private property by the landowner and his or her immediate family.

Despite the fact that patrons of Sunday hunting legislation have offered to exclude deer hunting with hounds on Sundays, the Virginia Hunting Dog Alliance has swayed some legislators into believing that permitting hunting on Sunday will have a negative long-term effect on hunting. Studies have shown the opposite. The biggest detriment to hunting is too little access and opportunity, not too much. The common good as dictated by millions of non-hunting Virginians will one day no longer tolerate their traditions unless license sales recover, and recover quickly.

Sunday hunting is not just an issue facing rural legislators. There are many hunters who now, because of work obligations, live in suburbs and cities. Some have kept the old family farm or have purchased rural land for the express purpose of wildlife conservation — again, for the common good. Adding an extra day to the hunting week will double the time available to these hunters — many of whom are my constituents — to pass along the tradition.

The commonwealth allows the sale of alcohol, off-track betting and every form of sporting event and retail activity imaginable to occur on Sunday; isn't it time to address the last remaining vestige of the blue laws, for the common good? A word of caution to all hunters: Anti-hunting groups support the ban on Sunday hunting because they recognize hunting is dying out in Virginia. Without legalizing some limited form of hunting on Sunday, that trend will continue. Forty-four states allow some form of Sunday hunting, with the overwhelming majority allowing "unlimited." For the common good, it may be time to amend one tradition in order to save another for future generations.

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from sfleader1926 wrote 2 years 10 weeks ago

Can't hunt on Sundays in Virginia because of the noise.

So where is the law that says you can't play your car radio loud. Sure there is a noise abatment law in Virginia but its not enforced. (Selective enforcement? or clear discrimination against us law abiding folks who enjoy hunters)

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