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Who made the first fur coat? A response to ‘Wearing fur is not worth it’

I am writing in response to the letter to the editor written by Sue McDonough in the Oct. 13, 2012 issue of the Journal, in which she misrepresented trapping and trappers. With respect to the use of leg hold traps, I could not do justice in the space provided to present an adequate discussion explaining their use, but the National Trappers Association has an informative video on YouTube™ called “Destroying the Myth:”, which I highly recommend.

One thing that troubles me about the referenced letter and ones like it, is that they never explain the big picture of the world we live in. They will endeavor to invoke sympathy for a harvested fur-bearer, but will never mention anything that would support the need for regulated population management.

They will never mention how overpopulation of raccoons can result in rabies outbreaks, which cause severe suffering for the species and potential infection of domestic animals and people. Or how many people’s pets are killed by coyotes or how the vibrant, 19-year-old female Canadian folk singer was killed by coyotes in 2009. Or how Farmer Brown’s prize-winning rooster became a midnight snack, due to Mr. Fox’s appetite. I think you get the picture.

I would suggest that outdoorsmen do not enjoy the killing of animals, but rather are enjoying the other aspects of these outdoor activities, while also endeavoring to responsibly use the resource provided by God.

If there does happen to be a person who has blood-lust, then the problem is with the person, not with trapping or hunting. Outdoorsman, through the many existing sportsman’s organizations, have, by far, done more good for animal species than anti-groups could ever hope to do.

In the closing statement of Ms. McDonough’s letter, she mentions that there is enough suffering in the world and that is an admirable observation. But I think it important to take a broader look at that issue. Suffering and death are here because of the fall of mankind, as recorded in the Bible. And I am not sure if many people know this, but the first fur coat was made by God himself, as stated in Genesis 3:21: “coats of skins.” These coats of skins were an illustration of the need for a covering of our sin. Similarly, animals then began to be killed and eaten, also depicting the need for death to give life.

These illustrations are built into creation and ordained for a fallen world, pointing to the death of Jesus Christ and the need to receive him by faith. They show a loving God’s provision for mankind, both physically (the illustration) and spiritually (Jesus Christ).

So, rather than boycott trapping, hunting and eating of meat, I would suggest that if one freely decides to wear fur, hunt for deer or eat prime rib, that they should be thankful and be thoughtful that God has provided it. And, of course, be mindful that it cost an animal its life.

But, more importantly, consider that those things point to the infinite value of the sacrificial death of the God-Man, which was necessary to save a human soul.

Scott Overhoff

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