Analyst’s biased swipe at Vic hunting laws

A former government policy analyst has attacked Victoria’s review of hunting laws and implied the bush will be full of drunk teenagers armed with guns and breaking the law.

“What teenager is ever under direct supervision, especially when in the bush with guns, mates and perhaps a bit of alcohol,” asked Jo Wilkinson in a blatantly biased opinion piece published in The Age.

She accused the Victorian government of trying to make a secret of the public consultation process over a review of hunting regulations that are due to expire.

“The Olympics, and now the refugee debate, have distracted from the imminent changes to Victoria’s hunting laws and the quiet resurgence of gun culture in this state,” she added.

“Thanks for a somewhat one-eyed generalised & alarmist discussion on hunting & guns,” said one reader in a comment on the article, which immediately attracted criticism.

Wilkinson lists the major changes proposed for the hunting regulations, which will set the scene for game and feral animal hunting in Victoria for the coming decade.

However, she fails to properly analyse them and does not mention why many are being changed.

Instead, she implies anti-hunting protesters attend duck hunts only to rescue and euthanise wounded birds, failing to acknowledge the clashes they’ve caused and the dangerous situations they have created at times.

Hunters have been encouraged to comment on the article.

Meanwhile, the deadline for submissions on the proposed new regulations is Monday.

Editor’s comment: Shooters and hunters have long believed there is a clear anti-shooting bias in government bureaucracy. In her opinion piece, Jo Wilkinson proves beyond doubt that this is the case. She may be retired, but it’s unlikely she was alone. Until we get objective analysis within the bureacracy, we have no chance of fair and reasonable gun and hunting laws. MM.




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Mick Matheson

Mick grew up with guns and journalism, and has included both in his career. A life-long hunter, he has long-distant military experience and holds licence categories A, B and H. In the glory days of print media, he edited six national magazines in total, and has written about, photographed and filmed firearms and hunting for more than 15 years.