A Bestial Ruling 

Regular readers of this column are (hopefully) aware that it is, for the most part, a locally focused anthology of woe, dysfunction and exceedingly poor decision-making. I only topically wander out of a range of 100 miles or so from the center of the universe (which is my childhood home in Nampa, in case anyone is wondering) in special cases--those, you could say, where we all might learn something.

This week's tale for our times comes from Wisconsin, and it involves an activity that is near and dear to us all: hunting. Yay for hunting! Click-click blammo thud! Cracka-racka boom boom squish ... and so forth. But take heed, Idahoans: When you're locked and loaded next season, remember to restrain your passion for nature just a teensy bit. You can still stalk a deer. You can shoot it. You can call it mean names while it's dying, cut it into little pieces and drown those pieces in white gravy. You're allowed to do pretty much anything you want to that carcass ... except to make sweet jungle love to it between steps three and four--at least, that's if Idaho is anything like Wisconsin.

Over in the Badger State, 20-year-old Bryan Hathaway was sentenced last week for a charge of mistreating an animal after being convicted of having sex with a deer carcass on the side of a highway. Hathaway had already pleaded "no contest" in April 2005 to a felony charge that he shot a horse--a 26-year-old gelding by the name of "Bambrick," to be unnecessarily precise--in order to more easily get all up in its business. With these two charges and another felony--since he stole a car to get away from Bambrick's crime scene--Hathaway will be locked up for over seven years in both state prison and psychiatric facilities.

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