I am Jim Heggeness, one of the sponsor’s of what has become to be known as the high fence initiative. Following is the petition title and the actual wording to be added to Chapter 36-01 of the North Dakota Century Code.
This initiated measure would add a new section to chapter 36-01 of the North Dakota Century Code effective November 1, 2012, providing that a person, other than an authorized government employee or agent, is guilty of a crime if the person obtains payment for the killing or attempted killing of privately owned big game species or exotic mammals in or released from a man-made enclosure.
FULL TEXT OF THE MEASURE IF MATERIAL IS UNDERSCORED, IT IS NEW MATERIAL WHICH IS BEING ADDED. IF MATERIAL IS OVERSTRUCK BY DASHES, THE MATERIAL IS BEING DELETED. IF MATERIAL IS NOT UNDERSCORED OR OVERSTRUCK, THE MATERIAL IS EXISTING LAW THAT IS NOT BEING CHANGED.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NORTH DAKOTA:
SECTION 1. A new section to chapter 36-01 of the North Dakota Century Code is created and enacted as follows: Fee killing of certain captive game animals prohibited – Penalty – Exception. A person is guilty of a class A misdemeanor if the person obtains fees or other remuneration from another person for the killing or attempted killing of privately-owned big game species or exotic mammals confined in or released from any man-made enclosure designed to prevent escape. This section does not apply to the actions of a government employee or agent to control an animal population, to prevent or control diseases, or when government action is otherwise required or authorized by law.
There have been many misleading insinuations, or in some cases - outright lies, made on this forum about the petition and its’ sponsors.
I will address some of those here.
Allegation: We are involved with or are receiving financial support for HSUS, PETA and other anti-hunting organizations.
Fact: This is pure hogwash! No sponsor that I know (and that includes Roger Kaseman and Gary Masching) is a member of, is involved with or has received financial support from any anti-hunting group. This is an outright lie perpetrated by the high fence supporters. For what it’s worth, I took three days of vacation from my job and paid my own expenses while working the State Fair in Minot.
Allegation: This measure can not be about fair chase because buffalo and pheasants were not included.
Fact: The measure states “…privately-owned big game species or exotic mammals…” Neither the buffalo nor the pheasant are classified as big game species in North Dakota. The logic behind this argument would lead one to believe that any animal not included in the initiated measure should have been. The only purpose for this type of argument is to create smoke screens. If the high fence supporters want to argue about the measure, argue about what the measure is, not what the measure isn’t.
The following are a few statements located on the Gary Mashing topic:
“On July 29th, 2010 Jim Heggeness and Roger Kaseman were BOOTED out of Commercial Building Two for inappropriate language and all the arguing going on. The other vendors complained to the fair board.”
These statements are very misleading. We had many “high fence supporters” come by and argue with us. This activity intensified after the high fence supporters timed us getting 12 signatures per minute. Another booth operator informed us of that activity. A person in the booth next to us objected to the noise. He was the source of some very inappropriate language. As a result, we were moved over to Commercial Building 1, where we continued to draw support for our measure.
“It will not be the hunters of ND that put this on the ballot,it will be the signatures collected fron the Home and garden shows, from booth in arts and crafts at the county fairs,the same people that signed the petition will be signing the next one to out law more and more types of huntung and shooting.
“This will never be decided by the hunters of ND it will be decided by the antihunting animal rights groups”
The people who put this measure on the ballot and who will decide the fate of it is the voters on North Dakota. It is too bad that this person doesn’t think the voters of North Dakota should have a say in their government.
“That being said, I think about the damage that people like Kaseman and others possibly cause by waving around pictures of an unfortunate instance where an animal is not ideally dispatched. Although they feel that they are doing their part to help end something that they necessarily don't agree with they in turn inflict damage to the creditablity of hunting by waving pictures of a gory scene of a controlled hunt gone awry. Although verbally communicated as a canned hunt by proponents of this measure when shown a picture, what the public perceives by the photo is not just a high fence hunt gone wrong but also an image associated with the word "hunting" in general. Although when presenting their case and pressing their point, people like Kasmen and others try to portray to the people they are targeting for signatures that this is not how they want hunting to be percieved when infact they are the very ones who have implanted an image and a blanket that covers the word "hunting" with one solitary unappealing image. Most of the public will walk away from that booth with only that image and the word hunting coinciding leaving a foul taste and poor opinion for any type of hunting. So I ask, who really is providing a black eye to hunting? Is it those that offer a controlled high fence hunt for monetary exchange with an occasional botched kill or is it those waving a graphic photo around to a public crowd and interjecting the word "hunting" with it's presentation to accomplish their goal?”
This is an interesting comment that you arrived at by planting both feet firmly in mid air and jumping to a conclusion. Fortunately, your assessment is incorrect. The most common comment received from people was “That’s not hunting!” The second most common response was “Do they do that in North Dakota?” The third most common response was “Is that legal?” What left the “foul taste” in people was the idea of shooting an animal in an escape proof enclosure and calling it hunting.
As a last comment, you all can see that the high fence supporters slinging all the mud here have not identified themselves. I guess it is just easier to mouth off when no one knows who you are. If you folks want to swallow the spin put out by the high fence boys, go for it. We just want to save our (and your) hunting heritage. The high fence boys want to prostitute it for their own personal gain. The choice is yours as to which side of the fence (pun intended) you want to be on.
Have a good day!