Say no to no backtags now!

Please say it isn’t true. 

Please tell me the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources will not help state legislatures write a bill to eliminate the backtag that hundreds of thousands of archers and gun deer hunters have been wearing since 1942. 

That’s 73 years!

That’s quite a tradition and tradition is something the DNR spends thousands of dollars trying to preserve, they say.

But there are many more reasons for discouraging eliminating this helpful, long-standing tradition.

Landowners surely would not favor foregoing these paper “license” plates on hunters’ backs.     I suspect wardens wouldn’t either.  But with the present administration, no DNR employee would, in his or her right mind, speak against such a change even if they didn’t like it.  But don’t worry; they wouldn’t be given the freedom or chance to do so anyway.

Identifying yourself as a deer hunter is advertising to the public who you are and you are proud of that fact.

The camouflage flag being waived by those who want to remain secret to the public is that it will save money.  Or landowners don’t need to know who the hunters  are.  Or wardens don’t need to know that some hunters might not have a license.

Well, some things cost money.  Just ask those groups who are trying to sell Wisconsin’s deer hunting as a long-standing tradition.  

It costs money to recruit hunters.  It costs money to register deer – even to do e-registration.

Now is not the time to give in to those big gamers who do not want to be identified as deer hunters.

It will never happen, most say.  Well, in listening to an online “chat” dealing with e-registration, eliminating backtags came up several times even though it was not on the “agendum” to be discussed.

Some wardens will privately state that this backtag discussion has come up numerous times, too.

And don’t buy the argument that the guy from Texas made them do it.  This tired excuse has outlived its  welcome long, long ago. As recently as this summer, when the 60-something page wildlife forecast was released, the Texas statement was used in support of some of the changes.  The guy from Texas said it was a good idea.

To read the Texas edict is like reading an excuse; it’s like saying, “I didn’t want to do it but the guy we paid big bucks to review our deer program says to do it.”

Just because we paid for it doesn’t mean we have to eat it.

            Aren’t recommendations just that? Recommendations?  Recommendations that a person with a sound mind, a better overall image of the situation, can say, "No, not at this time?"

            How far would an idea get to eliminate plates on cars, trucks and ATVs?  In fact, wasn’t it just two years ago that plates became mandatory on ATV and UTV machines?

            One might just as well go to the top of the power peak right now and tell state senators and representatives that this is not a bill they should waste their time writing.

            Pick another bill to write.  Write a bill selecting a state fungus, but not eliminating the deer hunting backtag.



The Wisconsin gun deer backtag has been around for 73 years.

Photo by Jerry Davis

Categories: Bloggers on Hunting, Hunting News, Whitetail Deer

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