The moral basis for public policy encouraging sport hunting

Journal of Social Philosophy 34 (2):256–266 (2003)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

This essay seeks to see if one side or the other in the hunting debate gets more purchase if we first ask what gives the state the moral right to promote sport hunting when the practice is in deep decline. We look at the dominant economic and political reasons for state support, none of which settle the moral matter. We then look at various state appeals to moral justification (ethical hunting, the right to hunt, the value of heritage, etc.) and determine that they beg the same prior questions that hunters beg--questions about the new scientific understanding of animal cognition and about the ideal individual and society in the 21st C. Neither side in the philosophical debate is helped by state promotion of hunting, given that anti-hunters also often dispense with the deeper questions and the relevant science. Conclusion: the debate should be based on the new scientific understanding of animals' capacities and on current ideals of the individual and society. State policy should reflect that. thehe state should see that it is on slippery ground when it devises programs to gratify hunters and to encourage the innocent, the reluctant, and the lapsed to take up the practice.

Similar books and articles

On the Moral Distinctiveness of Sport Hunting.Charles J. List - 2004 - Environmental Ethics 26 (2):155-169.
On the Moral Distinctiveness of Sport Hunting.Charles J. List - 2004 - Environmental Ethics 26 (2):155-169.
On the Morality of Hunting.Ann S. Causey - 1989 - Environmental Ethics 11 (4):327-343.
On the morality of hunting.Ann S. Causey - 1989 - Environmental Ethics 11 (4):327-343.
Trophy Hunting.Nikolaj Bichel & Adam Hart - 2023 - Springer Nature Singapore.
Sport Hunting, Eudaimonia, and Tragic Wisdom.James A. Tantillo - 2001 - Philosophy in the Contemporary World 8 (2):101-112.
But They Can't Shoot Back.Theodore R. Vitali - 2010-09-24 - In Fritz Allhoff & Nathan Kowalsky (eds.), Hunting Philosophy for Everyone. Wiley‐Blackwell. pp. 23–32.

Analytics

Added to PP
2009-01-28

Downloads
1,202 (#11,335)

6 months
260 (#11,338)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Margaret Van De Pitte
University of Alberta

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references