Hunters in Maine have filed a lawsuit in an attempt to end a Sunday hunting ban in the state. Effectively the lawsuit looks to abolish the state’s 139-year ban on hunting on Sundays.
The hunters are arguing that the state’s new “right to food law” that was enshrined in the state constitution by referendum last year. The amendment guarantees “a natural, inherent, and inalienable right to food, including… the right to grow, raise, harvest, produce, and consume the food of their own choosing.”
Likewise, the hunters feel like the Sunday hunting ban restricts their ability to work a full-time work week and still find time to hunt on the weekends.
“Opening up Sunday hunting would allow our family to go out on weekend hunting trips together as a family. We can teach our children how to properly and safely harvest animals. And we would have more opportunity to feed our family an organic, natural, God-given gift of wildlife.” – Plaintiff Virginia Parker from Readfield, Maine
The Right to Wild Food
Some private landowners are opponents of revoking the Sunday hunting ban. However, the hunters leading the lawsuit state that private landowners can still implement a “no hunting on Sundays” on their private property if they’d like.
Last year, Maine hunters harvested over 1.5 million pounds of meat just from whitetail deer. Likewise, 4,000 hunters went after moose, and 12,000 hunted for bears.
Currently, Massachusetts is the only other state that has a state-wide ban on Sunday hunting.
On top of hurting resident hunters, the plaintiffs state that the ban is also hurting the economy in the northern part of the state.
“Because hunters will not come from out of state, and they’re not supporting the gas stations, the stores, the restaurants because they can’t hunt on Sunday. They’re going to 48 other states where they can.” – Rep. Lester Ordway