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July 29, 1996

By Mari Maldonado

Animal trophy hunting

seems a cruel sport

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"Extreme and savage cruelty," is how animal activists describe animal
trophy hunting.

I agree.

I recently got the chance to finally see the movie Powder where the
main character, who is able to withstand and radiate high voltages of
electricity and perform some pretty mystical feats, touched a dying doe
and grabbed the arm of the sheriffs deputy, who was out trophy hunting.
With his touch he allowed the shooter to feel what the deer was feeling
as it died slowly, scared and in pain, as the hunter and his group stood
over it.

That scene, even before I had seen the movie and only caught the
previews, really moved me because I've always been one against such acts.

I think I first started feeling for animals the way I do when as a
child I witnessed some neighbors of ours, who moved away long ago,
killing a small goat or "cabrito." It's a popular food within the
Hispanic community, but the process for keeping the meat tasty proves a
cruel one, and events that day turned me off to the delicacy.

First the animal has to be a young one so the meat doesn't take on a
wild taste. a knife is driven into the goat's throat to slowly bleed it
to death. I'm not sure what this does, but an uncle once told me it had
something to do with the flavor.

During the scene I witnessed, the young goat kicked and cried, while
several grown men stood around cheering and licking their chops, taking
swigs of beer. Okay, well maybe not as dramatic as that, but seeing it
through a child's eyes made it seem that dramatic.

I realize this may not be trophy hunting, but I certainly think it
falls under unnecessary cruelty to animals.

As for trophy hunting, I recently discovered that there is an operation
in the a neighboring area that, for a price, will take you on a lion
mountain hunt. Hunters are allowed to carry weapons and kill the animal
and keep it for a trophy.

Am I the only one here that sees something wrong with that?

California has a quarter-century-old protection law for the big cats
that keeps them safe from trophy hunters. I think we need one.

Trophy hunting lobbyists will attempt to exploit fatal lion attacks,
but since 1890, there have only been 13 such attacks in North America.

I realize this is quite an unpopular stand in West Texas, but I fail to
undertand the reasoning behind hunting something down for sport.

It truly makes me wonder who the real animals are.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Mari Maldonado is an Enterprise reporter whose column
appears each Monday.


Lotto winner heirs

can lose their shirts

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There is one clear message from what happened to the heirs of the late
Porter Richarson and Johnny Ray Brewster. Before you claim those lotto
millions, talk to a good trust and estate lawyer.

Richardson, 80, of Colorado City radio station manager, won $4.3
million last year. He died three months later.

Brewster, 49, a Dallas pharmacist, won $12.8 million last year. He died
10 months later.

Now, each man's heirs are facing gigantic federal estate tabs. ...

A winner has 180 days from the lotto drawing to claim the prize. That's
plenty of time to prepare the way ... of keeping the federal wolves at
least at bay, should you die.

Perhaps the Legislature could change the law to allow people to assign
their winnings to someone else or some entity in their name. Or it could
print a cautionary warning on lotto tickets.
- Austin American-Statesman

Copyright 1996 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may
not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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Copyright 1996 by Pecos Enterprise
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321
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