Thursday, November 23, 2017 Elyria 28°
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Outdoors

Township gun ranges could be solution

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The Chronicle-Telegram recently ran several articles about the lack of safety around recreational shooting in the townships. The Chronicle news staff did a great job in bringing the issue to light, now let’s find a solution.

Naturally, township and village officials will attempt to cure the problem by passing a law, it’s what they do. But we already have a bunch of laws that say you can’t shoot recklessly, and it’s not getting the job done.

To begin, we need to put all politics and agendas aside. This is a public safety issue, and there’s no room for how you feel about guns. Suffice it to say that people have them, and they are going to shoot them. One of the reasons we work together in governments is for public safety, so let’s make a place where people can safely shoot.

That place is called a gun range, and making one is cheap and easy, and the duty of every township and village in America. In years past, people would go to the garbage dump to shoot at tin cans and bottles. I grew up shooting in a ravine on Indian Hollow Road where an old farmer dumped his cans and bottles. It was safe because the ravine made the ideal backstop, and it was ready-made.

Townships already have the machinery and manpower to make basic outdoor gun ranges, they just need to do it. Find a ravine or a bank, push some dirt around, maybe throw in a few landscape timbers and make a place to hang targets on two-by-fours. Find some Eagle Scouts who will build shooting benches as a community project and hang up a sign.

It’s not rocket science; any township can do it. You don’t need a range officer or a long disclaimer to be signed. Ohio has had ranges like this for many years in various parts of the state. If you give people a way to be safe and responsible, they tend to follow your lead.

The solution is easy, cheap and very manageable. I feel it would be ideal if Ohio State Parks would build and maintain a system of gun ranges, but that means big wheels have to turn and that takes time. Our townships and villages are capable of building small outdoor gun ranges at very little expense and in a single day.

We owe it to ourselves to implement safe solutions in our communities.

Parks donate deer meat

Toledo area metro parks have donated 9,540 pounds of processed venison to a local food pantry mission. The meat was harvested from a cull of the deer herd after bow hunters failed to remove enough animals.

As much of a windfall as that is, there was a $12,000 processing bill, paid by the parks and the organization Farmers and Hunters Feeding the Hungry (FHFH). In total, sharpshooters took 400 head of deer in three different culls at area parks where herd health and automotive safety was being jeopardized by overpopulation.

It’s OK to go in the water

Planning a summer vacation in Cape Cod? Don’t mind the sharks, all 147 of them.

According to a three-year study by the Atlantic White Shark Conservancy, the number of great whites has roughly doubled in the last four years due to the increasing number of seals in the area, a food source sharks greatly prefer over swimmers.

Despite what Steven Spielberg would have you believe, such attacks on humans are pretty rare. The last time a great white shark killed anyone in Massachusetts was 1936. Statistically speaking, Maui and Florida are a lot more dangerous for shark attacks.

Gun repair alert

Do you own a Remington 700 series rifle? It’s one of the best and most popular rifles in sporting arms history, with seven million in existence.

But unless you’re one of the 22,000 who has had the trigger group repaired, you need to get that done right away. An agreement settled by a federal judge this week clears the way for owners of the 700 (and a few similar bolt actions) to have their rifles repaired free by way of a trigger group retrofit, done by an authorized dealer or Remington Arms.

If you’re one of the many affected, do not shoot your rifle before having it repaired; the offer is good for just 18 months. You can check your rifle’s serial number online to see if it’s included at xmprecall.remington.com or call (800) 243-9700 for details.

The Remington 700 has been a staple for deer hunters, varmint and sport shooters, and variations are even used by police and military snipers.

Contact Byron Scarbrough at ByronOutdoors@gmail.com.



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