Will Kentucky make hunting a constitutional right?
California banned hunting bears and bobcats with dogs in September, but Kentucky is taking no risks with its own hunting laws. A constitutional amendment on the state’s ballot Tuesday proposes to make hunting a personal right and the preferred way to control animal populations. The amendment would add this language to Kentucky’s constitution:
“The citizens of Kentucky have the personal right to hunt, fish, and harvest wildlife, using traditional methods, subject only to statutes enacted by the Legislature, and to administrative regulations adopted by the designated state agency to promote wildlife conservation and management and to preserve the future of hunting and fishing. Public hunting and fishing shall be a preferred means of managing and controlling wildlife.”
Democratic Representative Leslie Combs, one of the bill’s sponsors in the Kentucky Legislature, argues that the law reaffirms gun and private-property rights and that it has strong economic benefits. “Altogether, [hunting and fishing] bring in about $3 billion a year and they support 34,000 jobs,” she explained in an op-ed.