Let hunters hunt on Sundays

The author went duck hunting on a Sunday and said it felt like a Saturday. (Contributed photo)

Delta Waterfowl recently issued a press release to announce that after five years of work, it had helped remove a ban on hunting on Sundays in North Carolina.

The story surprised me because I didn’t know there were any remaining states that didn’t allow Sunday hunting. But according to Delta, now that North Carolina is off the list, there are still 10 other states that don’t allow it, or at least have some restrictions.

Growing up hunting in the 1960s and ’70s in southeast Michigan, I remember being confused about why we were allowed to hunt on Lake St. Clair for ducks on Sunday, or in St. Clair County state game areas for squirrels and deer, but we couldn’t do any of that on our great-uncle’s dairy farm, which was only a few miles away from the state game area. It wasn’t until 2003 that Michigan removed all Sunday hunting bans in the state.

Delta’s latest victory comes after it was successful in getting North Carolina legislators to allow some Sunday hunting in 2015. That law allowed hunting only on private land, and it didn’t allow waterfowl hunting. Still, Delta credits that 2015 victory with showing North Carolina citizens that Sunday hunting wouldn’t mean the end of the world.

Sunday hunting prohibitions probably served their purpose when they were passed many years ago, but they don’t make the cut today as we try to increase our ranks.

In the press release, Ches McDowell of Delta Waterfowl noted, “Allowing duck hunting on Sundays will double the opportunities for working families, including their children.”

I don’t know about doubling opportunities, but I certainly agree that if most families only get to hunt on weekends, it doesn’t make sense to take one of those two days away from them.

Now that North Carolina has seen the light, Delta said it is going after the 10 other states where Sunday hunting is not allowed, or is restricted. Hunting is illegal on Sundays in Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania, and it is restricted in Connecticut, Maryland, New Jersey, South Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia.

The 10 remaining states would do well to get on board with Michigan and the rest of the country.

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