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Killing, Death, and Dying

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posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 11:47 AM
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I took the last sipp of coffee hurriedly this morning. It was time. I went upstairs and wiped down my rifle with a well oiled rag one more time and put 3 .30-06 rounds into the clip of a 1917 trench rifle I bought surplus about 20 years ago. Dreadfully, i knew it would do the pending task well.

My wife had already gone outside to start feeding the animals... the goats, the chickens, the pigs...generally in that order everyday... today we were feeding the horses last. This would whet the appetite of our two geldings...Stretch and Clarence. Clarence is about 16 years old now and is solid, stocky, rambunctious but maturing... a beautiful horse.

Stretch by contrast has seen his better days. Once much like Clarence, he was now 36... lean. stringy, going lame in his front leg, and it was increasingly hard to keep weight on him... this next winter would be tough and we weren't sure what to do next. we had tried the sweet feeds and senior feeds and beet pulp to buff him up,... but Stretch was just getting old. My long time stalwart friend was a mere shadow of himself and he was hurting. Stretch took a lot of naps now... laying on the sweet hay in the summer sun... sometimes I had to see him breath as he often looked dead.

It was time.

We took the feed bucket and scoop and walked slowly back into the wooded pasture... shaking and rattling the feed to lead them on. Clarence was right there, but Stretch... it hurt him to move and walk that far. Finally, with a sudden burst... he came along... limping. For a brief moment, he looked spry... a little healthier... spirited... but then Clarence stood beside him and all of Stretch's frailties came rushing back.

My wife nervously lit a cigarette, tears welded up in both our eyes as we looked at each other and then looked away... Damn, this was hard.. too hard.

Finally, Stretch was where he needed to be... the feed was gone... and my wife led Clarence away back up the hill. I pulled the bolt and locked in a round.

"Good bye, old friend." Aimed at his head... and fired.

Stretch collapsed to the ground as if his legs had been swept out from under him. He tried to get back up.

I cried out.." Stay down, damn it. Stay down" and fired another round.. point blank to the head. Blood gushed in torrents from his nose and mouth and yet, Stretch still tried to get back up...

I fired one more and final round. It was over. A spirited fighter to the end. And then I wailed like a little child all the way back up the hill.

I write this because so often here in the Survival Forum, we speak of killing with such bravado...

We wonder what is taking the American populace so long to rise up and violently rebel against the government.

We speak of killing this animal or that opponent or trapping and killing and dressing our next meal so coldly.

My question and catalyst for conversation is this...

Have you ever killed? Could you kill? An animal... an opponent... mercy kill a friend that can't go on?

I believe the reason most Americans have not rebelled against the government is that things are not bad enough yet, but when they do get bad enough... we will still hesitate because once that gennie is out of the bottle... there is no going back.

I believe further, that most people that own a firearm respect life and know the fragility and preciousness of life... and know the ramifications of killing... be it a friend, a sporting animal, a farm animal for food, or as a veteran... the life of another person.

Have you killed or could you kill?




posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 11:58 AM
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Yes and Yes...and I enjoyed it about as much as you describe. I'm glad I caught this, right before logging off. You're the first person I've caught a thread from on here who actually described it without a pinch of glory or "coolness". Kudos to you and S/F to be sure. Anyone who says the killing part of the hunt is anything but ugly either hasn't done it....or is someone I'd never want near me with a loaded weapon. It makes me feel just a bit better seeing others here have had some of the same problems/feelings...and don't mind sharing it.

Great OP...and meaningful.



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 11:59 AM
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reply to post by AlreadyGone
 


I would never kill for mercy, The horse clearly had the desire to live and I don't believe in euthanasia. As for killing an opponent, If I have no choice then I wouldn't hesitate.



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 12:02 PM
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I grew up on farms. Family had cattle, corn, hay all the trimmins..haha etc. I've been in that same position a time or two..
My worst time was dealing with the barn cats' kittens.

Also, hunting and fishing...but not knowing the animal makes it less personal, than your description. Sometimes.

Then as a peace officer, I was lucky to never have to have fired my side arm at a person. Ever. Even though, I was once fired upon.

It's a question that has entered my mind too, much with your situation in my mind. Mostly as a hope that people would grasp the humanity, before spewing their :" I could do it in a second". People can talk big behind their keyboards, from the safety of their own home, saturated by violent t.v shows, movies, and video games.

Not as an excuse to do terrible things, but as a sadistic tool to numb people, kids.. to the idea of killing, but taking the reality out of it. I'm very interested to see the replies here.



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 12:05 PM
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Sorry you had to put your old friend down, not an easy task by any means.

It is a very complicated subject, that delves into our hearts, our philosophies, our fears, and our human psyche.

Personally I don't like to kill anything, but I know that I could do it if I had to, but I think there is a sequence of mental 'checkpoints', so to speak, that need to be passed before killing becomes a legitimate course of action.

As a species we do have killer instincts, I believe everyone has a killer inside them, with some people these abilities are buried deeper than others.



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 12:13 PM
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Originally posted by DeadSnow
reply to post by AlreadyGone
 


I would never kill for mercy, The horse clearly had the desire to live and I don't believe in euthanasia. As for killing an opponent, If I have no choice then I wouldn't hesitate.


I ditto this ^



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 12:19 PM
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As I have said before part of you dies too.Some just let that part die and kill as a lifestyle.Some are sociopaths and don't have pain for others in themselves.Killing is no good.
But I will do it if I have to.That's my oath.



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 12:20 PM
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reply to post by AlreadyGone
 


I will not say what I would or could or have done, that is mine.
There is a huge difference between a mercy killing of a freind and killing trash or game.
What you have done, although the absolute right thing is the hardest to do.
All I suggest is in future days a little study of anatomy might ease your and others pain.



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 12:58 PM
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Originally posted by DeadSnow
reply to post by AlreadyGone
 


I would never kill for mercy, The horse clearly had the desire to live and I don't believe in euthanasia. As for killing an opponent, If I have no choice then I wouldn't hesitate.


So, faced with a dying friend (dog, horse, man, no difference, just friend), and you were given these options....
**spend thousands, maybe tens of thousands of dollars to treat them, where the prognosis was probably still only slightly better, and the last days would be more numerous, but with little enjoyment for life......
**or do nothing, and watch your friend suffer, beg, moan, hurt, and drag himself around just trying to please you for one more day.....
**or let the vet/doc administer a cold dose of medicine, in a cold sterile environment, without your companionship there at those last moments......
**or, take matters into your own hands, lead your friend out to a beautiful and quiet place, and talk over the good times and love you've shared while you helped them pass on.

I hope I'm as brave as the OP and I can choose the 4th option. It is the only humane one in my opinion. I hope my loved ones feel the same way when I reach my last days.
edit on 12-8-2012 by getreadyalready because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 01:02 PM
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reply to post by getreadyalready
 


I have no right to decide when it is time to end someones life, that would be up to them. If they were brain dead, I would go with the first option...I'm sorry but that's just me.



little enjoyment for life......


Better than nothing right? Who knows what happens after death, every minute is valuable.
edit on 12-8-2012 by DeadSnow because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 01:12 PM
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reply to post by DeadSnow
 


Fair enough.

I disagree in most ways, but I agree in the fact that every moment is valuable, and every moment should be cherished, and everyone should fight for every moment they can.

But, for me, at some point you cease to be yourself. You are not living, you are just existing. Not experiencing life, not learning any new life lessons, not providing anything to anybody, and just becoming a burden in every way. At that point, I'd rather cease to live. I've always said I want there to be blood when I go out, as proof that I fought for every last minute. My worst fear is dying in a hospital bed, or dying in my sleep, or dying when I don't even realize it happened. I want to see it coming, and face it head on, and I don't understand the concept of those people that would rather die peacefully in their sleep or let some 3rd party go euthanize a loved member of their family.

I understand others feel differently though, and that certainly is their right.

I admire the OP for handling it personally when he thought the time was right, and at great emotional cost to himself. That is an admirable, and merciful sacrifice.



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 01:17 PM
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One time I was playing halo reach and one of my team mates Ben kept dying giving away easy deaths to our opponents, he looked shaky with his aim stumbling everywhere, he had been in the game a long time, longer than most of us and it was taking its toll on him, he was tired, often forgetting to reload his rifle, not getting power weapons, Just school boy errors!, errors only a soldier in his final hours would make. Sure he was a friend, some would even call him a family member seen as he is my brother, but it was hurting his his record and brutal to watch, more that I was just embarrassed to know him

So I took my 2010 standard edition battle rifle, that I had killed many a men with, raised it to the back of his head...but this time was different, all other players froze though I could not distinguish if it was from pure horror of my actions, or just my altered perception

I was numb, the only sensation I had was of the rifle, it seemed as if it was the only thing in existence and I was behind it not really in control more as a spectator,all I could see of the scene was the huge almighty barrel, then as if time sped up the rifle felt heaver than normal! the trigger was cold and sharper than usual taking most of my energy just to squeeze and in that moment that seemed like hours of mental deliberation had passed just raising the gun to his head...I released him from that miserable existence.

I don't remember seeing blood or even him drop all that encompassed me was the BANG witch vibrated into my very being, immediately widening my vision in a moment of pure clarity. Later reports from onlookers reported I tbagged him violently...all I know is I had blood in my ball sack.
edit on 12-8-2012 by AsuspiciousMANappears because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 01:24 PM
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reply to post by getreadyalready
 


I guess I just can't live with the guilt after making such a decision.



At that point, I'd rather cease to live. I've always said I want there to be blood when I go out, as proof that I fought for every last minute.


This is probably the most manly thing I've ever read, I almost know my end, I'll get shot. If I get to live for 5 more years or so the hospital bed it is.



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 05:31 PM
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reply to post by AlreadyGone
 


I've had to put animals down that I cared about. Two horses and a dog. The first horse I had raised for over 20 years. She got old. Her muscles atrophied to the point where she could no longer stand. Her lungs were failing. The vet said there was nothing that could be done. So I shot her. I felt bad about it.

The second horse very unexpectedly got intenstinal cancer which killed her bowel and most of her lower intestine. The vet put her down when they said they couldn't save her. I gave the ok. Felt bad about it.

I had to shoot my dog when he lost a fight to a porcupine. The quills had gotten into his bloodstream. Into his eyes. Into his brain. He was a blind, convulsing mess. So I shot him. Felt bad about it.

In comparison, I've shot and killed several Iraqis and didn't feel a thing. I've shot deer and elk with no emotion other than wondering how good the meat was going to taste. I've slaughtered hogs and steers since I was a child without a second thought. None of that bothers me.

So I guess the point is that it is a bit harder to kill something you've made an emotional attachment to. Killing anything or anyone else is a lot easier than you'd think.



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 07:30 PM
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Well I am back home now...

Thanks for the responses and I appreciate the verbal support. I have farm animals and have killed pigs and chickens. I have been hunting and have killed wild game..ie deer and squirrels.

But I swear, putting down Stretch was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do. However, had you known him... you would also realize it was the right thing to do. We had tried many different things to help and ease his suffering, but it didn't... and it would have been misery for him to go through the upcoming winter.

Death is an unpopular and discomforting subject... for all the right reasons, However, as a suvivor... and not being dead when others around you are dying... makes you a suvivor... you face and will face death.

Looking at the body and face... crumpled like an empty grocery bag... all signs of life and personality now sadly gone... cold... still.

Not quite so popular and emboldening as discussions on guns and knives and bug out bags... It is important to know what you are bugging out from and why having a weapon is a great responsibility... and why so many hesitate to expedite death.



posted on Aug, 14 2012 @ 05:15 PM
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reply to post by AlreadyGone



I write this because so often here in the Survival Forum, we speak of killing with such bravado...

 


those that speak with the bravado have only done it in video games.

Those that have will in some way have the words burned into their mind, "better be able to justify what you do before God Almighty and a Court of Law"

And then the incidents that are recorded in the mind. They play at will, and mostly while asleep and not asleep.
edit on 14-8-2012 by rebellender because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 15 2012 @ 03:53 AM
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reply to post by AlreadyGone
 




Have you ever killed?

Yes


Could you kill?

Yes


An animal...

For fun


an opponent...

Definitely


mercy kill a friend that can't go on?

Depends if I am mad at him or not.



I believe the reason most Americans have not rebelled against the government is that things are not bad enough yet,

Yeah, Americans really have no idea how good that have it. The average hipster thinks a state official saying "god" during working hours is a human rights violation.



but when they do get bad enough... we will still hesitate because once that gennie is out of the bottle... there is no going back. I believe further, that most people that own a firearm respect life and know the fragility and preciousness of life... and know the ramifications of killing... be it a friend, a sporting animal, a farm animal for food, or as a veteran... the life of another person.


No offense but you don't really know what you are talking about. Killing a horse is not the same as killing a person. Maybe survival is not for you, did you even practice cleaning the horse and getting the meat?



posted on Aug, 15 2012 @ 04:02 AM
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My only answer to most of your questions would be yes, without going into detail.

Perhaps Im different....i see people as animals to begin with so my respect for the lives of others really isnt up there to start with. Can I kill without compunction? Yep......the more you kill, the less hesitation you experience.

Until eventually, you don't hesitate regardless of what your aiming at.

But again, its not something I like to talk about. I can do it at the drop of a hat if I have to, doesn't mean I like it. I blame the programming personally.



posted on Aug, 15 2012 @ 08:18 AM
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reply to post by AlreadyGone
 


Thank you for writing this. I'm a horse owner also and this kind of things is really hard for me. I could really do it if I needed too, but if I don't have to be there, I prefer not too. I'm just, well, can be a wet rag with animals. I suppose in a survival situation we would eat anything if starving but any farm animal that has had any sort of meds is usually unfit for consumption.

To the poster (Sorry, can't remember your name) who said they don't believe in euthanasia...I understand why you wouldn't because I don't like it myself. But sometimes it is our responsibility to do things that really, really suck. This particular situation sounds like a horse on the farm where i board my horse-very old, not keeping weight or absorbing nutrients. Maybe in a southwestern climate it would be different, but here in Northern Michigan, our winters can be really rough and even with a nice, thick blanket, the winter would be torture for this horse.

I rest assured that this horse has gotten the best possible medical care, grooming, attention and feed through out her life.

*shrugs*

Still sucks. Killing sucks.



posted on Aug, 16 2012 @ 10:52 PM
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Yeah, I have killed many animals since I hunt every year and each year kill either a deer or an Elk.
I had to put down a family dog 2 weeks ago that was blind. deaf and fairly crippled. It was very hard.

Shooting an Elk 100 yards away is a lot more detached than putting a .22 to the back of the head of a family pet 2" away.

I also killed a man in self defense many years ago. The story is on here somewhere if your interested. I am not interested in retelling it again.

And as one posted noted: having killed a person is not even in the same universe as killing a person.

I can tell you that when you kill another person it don't matter how hard or bad-ass you think you are you WILL have nightmares for years and replay the event in your mind every day.

Most people will never know if they can do it even if it means their own life. I now know that I can if I need to.

It's not like TV when you shoot someone. They don't just fall down and lay there. They bleed, vomit, crap themselves & wet themselves. All the while crying and wanting their mother or calling out to god.

You stand there wondering what the hell you just did and how all this happened so fast.
Your numb and it feels like somebody shot Novocaine in your brain. At least that's how I felt.

I still carry a concealed weapon, practice weekly and would do it again to save my life or someone else's.
edit on 16-8-2012 by mwood because: (no reason given)






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