I Have a Gripe

December 2, 2010

“It Was a Just a Turkey”

Filed under: General Annoyances,Laws,New Jersey,Outdoors — alvb1227 @ 1:04 am
Tags: , , ,

I just saw this story on my local news and I was compelled to write a post.

In Rutherford, NJ, two teenagers killed one of the borough’s wild turkeys in July of this year with a bow and arrow. The backlash has been so bad, the case has been moved to another venue.

Now many of you that know me personally or have read this blog regularly, know that I am an avid angler (catch and release) and thoroughly enjoy the outdoors. I am not a hunter or “catch and keep” angler, but do not begrudge anyone who is, as long as they hunt and fish responsibly and consume what they kill. This represents the large majority of hunters.

The two young men who killed this turkey, that was essentially considered a neighborhood mascot, are not even close to hunters. From what I have read about these two, they are essentially the neighborhood delinquents that even when confronted after shooting the turkey made snide remarks about the event. They received multiple tickets and summons from Rutherford and the state Division of Fish and Wildlife and the case will be heard in court soon.

Since the event, the court has received hundreds of letters from citizens outraged over the event, urging the judge to give out the maximum possible sentence. The two are also receiving harassing phone calls and people are standing outside their homes with signs.

When Jolyn Garner, one of the boy’s mothers, was recently interviewed, she said the following; “It’s just been nonstop harassment for four months,” she said. “I’m sorry the turkey was killed, but it was a just a turkey.”

Wow…good parenting example. Now I know where her boy gets it from.

The kicker to all this is while being interviewed, young Garner also informed the reporter he is a vegetarian for “personal and moral reasons.” Is he serious? Killing a turkey, or any animal, in a public place, for fun, is moral? He was in a park. He could’ve missed the turkey and shot a child!

In case you can’t tell, I’m furious. I hope these kids get whatever the maximum they can receive. What they should really do is give them community service with Fish and Wildlife helping with wildlife management of the state turkey population. That should help them understand what nature in New Jersey is all about.

It is because of idiots like this people have such a low opinion of Jersey.



  1. I am also an angler, and I don’t understand this kind of behavior. “It’s just a turkey”–geesh, what a great example the mother is!

    Comment by thepetalpusher — December 2, 2010 @ 1:10 am | Reply

  2. I am Jolyn Garner, whom you are talking about. I would just like to say that you are basing an opinion on something you read that was taken out of context and, to a certain degree, differs from my intended point. What I said was any lessons that could have been taught to these boys were unfortunately lost in the shuffle, due to the overzealous and inappropriate actions by a lot of animal rights fanatics. This has included threats and assault against my son. I said that my son is regretful about what he did, he has apologized and is trying to move on with his life. I said that I have tried to keep the situation in perspective and that it could have been worse; a person was not shot, nor was a cat or dog, it was just a turkey. As you’ve seen, the last five words were quoted and repeated. I do stand behind what I said, it was not a human being and not a domesticated animal and/or a family pet. A wild animal which is legal to hunt and is in fact killed every day was shot by the bow and arrow. Furthermore, it would be responible of you to have the simple and very public facts about the case before making non-sensical points such as saying that my son “could’ve missed the turkey and shot a child” My son didn’t shoot anything, it was the other boy who is an archer and who shot the turkey. There you are referring to others as an “idiot” yet here you are writing about something and not even having the facts. Also the area where the turkey was shot is not a park, so you are wrong on that point as well. Many of us with brains in our heads are sick of hearing people like you with the what-ifs. What if a child was shot!! You’re right but it goes both ways: what if one of these clearly aggressive wild turkeys chased a child into the roadway and the child was struck by a car? what if, as someone wrote on another forum, the turkey spread disease to the residents? What if the turkeys caused a motor vehicle accident while they ran in and out of the roadway? I mean this could go on and on. It comes down to this: a wild animal was killed, which is legal in the state of NJ, but not in this town. Where do you think that turkey came from that was on your table on Thanksgiving? Do you think the turkey fairy dropped it there? Or do you realize that more than 45 million turkeys are killed (often by having their necks broken) every Thanksgiving season. Get your facts straight. Keep things in perspective. Learn a lesson in christianity about not judging a stranger. You don’t know anything about me or my family so don’t pretend to. Get a life.

    Comment by Jolyn Garner — December 7, 2010 @ 10:44 pm | Reply

  3. Question about facts
    Did your child break the law?
    Do you find the law “unjust”?
    Has your child had prior offenses?
    They were called “delinquents”. Is there any FACT that there were prior altercations in the neighborhood?
    Do you believe that the neighbors were wrong to be upset by your sons behavior?
    Do you believe that he should be reprimanded for this offense? on the assumption that there were prior offenses, how do you believe this should be handled.
    Is it correct that snide remarks were made about the killing of the turkey?

    Yes, there are turkeys killed every Thanksgiving. By hunters, not neighborhood kids. The fact is that they broke a law and should be punished for their crime. Should they be persecuted repeatedly? No. They are children who made a mistake. They should be allowed to pay for their crime and then be allowed to learn from it.

    You are right, we do not know your family. But your repsonse does give insight into why there may have been snide remarks. At least it was not a child or domestic animal.

    Comment by ..... — February 2, 2013 @ 4:54 pm | Reply

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