DENVER, CO – Colorado, long a mecca for hunters, may soon be losing millions of dollars of annual revenue as a result of a number of restrictive gun control laws its senate is currently debating. California-based Outdoor Channel has already said it will stop filming in the state if lawmakers pass the highly restrictive gun laws they are now considering.
For a number of years, the state has developed a much deserved reputation as a sportsman’s paradise. Not only does Colorado have crystal-clear lakes and streams, wide open spaces, and the backdrop of the Rocky Mountains to frame a shot, but it also boasts some of the best game hunting in the country. But unless something changes, it won’t be the site of the Outdoor Channel.
Executive producer Mark Bane said, “The message we will take to our viewers and listeners is that these proposed laws are so dangerous to hunters and any other person, be she a fisherman or a skier who brings a handgun into the state for self-defense, that we cannot recommend hunting, fishing or visiting Colorado. We reach millions of people, and, quite frankly, we have credibility that Colorado government officials can no longer match.”
His email to Senator Steve King (Republican – CO) amounted to a “proceed at your own risk” warning. According to The Daily Caller, not only will Bane “film the shows in a more gun-friendly state,” but also that he would warn hunters to stay away.
Hunting organizations and hunting clubs around the country are already pulling out of Colorado, and the loss of The Outdoor Channel would certainly tarnish the state’s image as the place for hunters to come.
Outdoor Channel’s most popular show is “Gun Stories,” hosted by “Criminal Minds” actor Joe Mantegna. Bane admitted his network is “relatively small potatoes” by TV standards, but even so, it pumps over a million dollars a year into the Colorado economy. And Bane is not alone. He cites a “major network producer” who chose to set a reality TV show in Arizona instead of Colorado after a lunch conversation about the pending legislation.
The impact doesn’t stop there. Bane said if the gun bills pass, not only will he leave but he will also carry his message to a meeting of outdoor and hunting programing producers in Texas. His email to Senator King did not indicate whether Outdoor Channel would leave the state if some but not all of the bills pass.