The first day of the 2014 Safari Club International Annual Hunters’ Convention was memorable for more than one reason. Hunters from all corners of the world exchanged stories and camaraderie under one roof, in a culture-rich environment decorated with the most impressive taxidermy and wildlife art known to man. A truckload of cash was raised to support wildlife and conservation. But for SCI members and sportsmen everywhere, the most exciting event of the day took place in Washington D.C.
A bi-partisan vote in the U.S. House of Representatives supported critical legislation that, if passed by the Senate, will protect our rights to hunt and fish on public lands across America. It’s called the Sportsmen’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act.
While I was attending a press luncheon this afternoon, SCI Director of Government Affairs Melissa Simpson sat across the room from me, texting feverishly on her cell phone. She had just received the good news. Applause roared from a crowd of enthusiastic outdoor media professionals as she explained how the SCI has been fighting for years to push this bill through.
“Safari Club International would like to thank the members of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus and the leadership in the House of Representatives for advancing this very important legislation,” Melissa explained. “We especially appreciate the work of Congressman Bob Latta, who has been the champion of the Sportsmen’s Act as the co-chair of the Sportsmen’s Caucus.”
The work isn’t over yet, and you can bet SCI will be there until the end to safeguard God’s greatest gifts and stand up against the forces that threaten our hunting heritage.