Massachusetts man facing multiple charges for shooting a bear on his property

From the libertarian Reason magazine (with links to news media stories).


Richard Ahlstrand, of Auburn, Massachusetts, faces criminal charges after encountering a bear in his back yard and shooting the damned thing to avoid being mauled or eaten. Specifically, as noted at Reason 24/7, he’s charged with “illegally killing a bear, illegally baiting a bear, illegal possession of a firearm and failure to secure a firearm.” All of these charges, once translated from Massachusetts to American, seem to stack up to outrage that Ahlstrand didn’t make his yard completely inhospitable to animals that are rarely seen in the area, and then investigated a suspicious noise with a weapon in hand rather than cower under the bed. Worst of all, he actually defended himself when he encountered danger.

[…]In both the Telegram and CBS articles, “authorities” are quoted as saying they don’t think the bear was a threat to people. I suppose it’s possible that the black bears in Massachusetts are a kinder, gentler breed than the one that mauled a man near Payson, Arizona, last June. Or the one that tore up a woman in the same area in May. And then there was the bear that did a job on a woman near Pinetop …

When I see stories like this, the first thing that I think is that my role as a protector has been criminalized by the state. Suppose that I owned property and had a family and a bear wandered onto my property and threatened my family. The environmentally-friendly authorities think that I should let the bear eat my family, or at least sit still and hope that he doesn’t. Is it reasonable to have a family if you can’t protect them? What kind of incentive are these tree-hugging leftists offering men to get married when men know perfectly well that the state prefers them to watch their family be mauled by a bear rather allow that man to shoot that bear?

2 thoughts on “Massachusetts man facing multiple charges for shooting a bear on his property”

  1. Kinda a non sequitur but I associate these attitudes with paganism. It’s as though we hold these animals sacred. Bleh.


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