Hunting is one those things that inspires heated debate. People both for and against are passionate protectors of their side. Where I live, in New Jersey, whenever they authorize a bear hunt there’s a massive dispute pitting friend against friend, brother against brother. It’s like the Civil War, only without the ridiculous battlefield strategy of standing directly in front of your enemy and firing lead pellets into one another.

Hunting enthusiasts claim we need to control the population. Opponents counter that killing bears for anything other than pure necessity is barbaric. As in most aspects of life, I reside somewhere in the gray. Sure, I don’t want to get up close and personal with a 600 pound bear, but I also have no desire to shoot one either. That’s just the moderator in me.

Matt Hughes and Dan Hardy, on the other hand, are those passionate black and white defenders of their convictions. Hardy has been outspoken in the past about Hughes’ hunting prowess, once even implying that Hughes hunts to make up for limp-dick syndrome, while Hughes has neither the time nor patience to even entertain such anti personal freedom nonsense, posting on his blog once that he cannot even begin to “educate you PETA idiots.” Clearly both men have strong beliefs on the matter.

Speaking to Fighters Only recently, Hardy had this to say:

“I don’t really understand how you fly out to Africa, look out on the savannah, look at those animals and go ‘You know, I want to kill that…I can’t make sense of that in my head. For someone who’s a self-proclaimed good-guy Christian, it just doesn’t calculate. He’s getting his morals mixed up somewhere. He really needs to have a look at himself and question what he’s doing.”

This is nothing more than a contrast of personalities at play, but it’s one – just like all the other contentious issues of our time, that will never go away. Hardy is kind of an eastern-philosophical/spiritual dude. He recently spent a few weeks in an Amazonian hut to recalibrate his chi. Hughes is a God, Guns, and Good Ole USofA guy. To him, the mere suggestion that hunting is wrong is anti-God, anti-Guns, and worst of all, anti-American. To him, it’s an infringement on his inalienable rights as a human being. It’s serious Russell Kirk type shit we’re talking here.

Both guys are pretty intriguing personalities, and entitled to their opinions. I’d love to watch a formal debate between these two on a myriad of topics. It’d beat the hell out of the upcoming presidential debates, that’s for sure. And best of all, it would undoubtedly end with some fists a flying.