Utah Votes to Protect Constitutional Right to Hunt and Fish

The Beehive State is protecting hunters and anglers in the midst of a pivotal election.

As uncertainty continues to constrict America's political climate like a well-tied slipknot, Utah is proactively thinking about its wildlife and its outdoorsmen.

On Tuesday, voters passed an amendment that creates a constitutional right to hunt and fish in Utah, protecting sportsmen and women from potential animal protection policies that could interfere the American pastime of outdoor recreation.

The amendment passed with 74 percent of the vote, per The Associated Press.

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Constitutional Amendment E officially makes hunting and fishing Utah's preferred means of managing and controlling wildlife.

"This bill is not only about protecting who we are, but preserving who we are going forward," said House Sponsor Rep. Casey Snider, according to Ballotpedia.org. "It is not unforeseeable, and history bears this out, that 30 or 40 or 50 years from now, those participating in [hunting and fishing] will be a very significant minority, more so than they already are. It is not a forgone conclusion that these sort of activities will be eliminated from the public sphere and from conservation generally and at large."

Because hunters and anglers serve as such a valuable resource in addition to generating direct funds through the sale of fishing and hunting licenses and permits, many other states like Vermont, Alabama and Minnesota have installed similar legislation.

Some of those who oppose the bill point to a narrow-minded approach to conservation.

"To really summarize what's wrong with Amendment E, is that potentially it would take away the science of conservation," Kirk Robinson of the Western Wildlife Conservancy told the Salt Lake Tribune before election day. "That research may not recommend killing predators or stocking rivers with non-native fish. All of Utah's outdoor activities will best be preserved by federal, state and local protection of public lands from activities such as mining, drilling and livestock grazing, and by supporting wildlife preservation through science."

Robinson also pointed out the bill's failure to recognize outdoor activities like hiking, camping or simply enjoying scenery.

However, with such a commanding majority voting in favor of the bill, Utah showed the value it places on hunting and angling.