For the overall question, it’s hard to answer for me as I’m coming at this from the perspective of a vegan.
Most of us, for example, think abortion is wrong. Does a really bad motivation for having the abortion make it even worse? (e.g. if one person has an abortion because they can’t afford to raise a child, but a second person, with lots of resources, has an abortion because they don’t want to risk stretch marks, is the second person doing a worse deed than the first? Does the fact that people like the second person exist somehow make abortion for other, more realistic reasons better?) Of course, most of us would say there is no justification for abortion, yet we may still be bothered by a situation like this second person’s.
So, while they are two very different things, in addition to being pro-life, I also happen to think that hunting, fishing, eating meat or dairy, or anything else that involves consuming animal products is wrong. I believe, that in our modern time, there is no need for the vast majority of us to eat meat or wear animal skin. So, when I think about something like sport hunting, dog-fighting, and the like, I see it as perhaps a bit worse than just eating meat, as it’s even harder to justify. On the other hand, the more I learn about factory farms and slaughterhouses, the more I have to think that someone who gets their meat from hunting is contributing far less to animal cruelty than someone who buys veal at the supermarket.
To the post I quoted, though, while I would like to think that most hunters are good folk, who hunt to put food on the table for their family or others in need, I have now lived in two places where my children and I are subject to graphic reminders that often the opposite is true. In west Texas, on a major highway, along a ranch that stretched for a long distance, hunters had decided it would be fun to try and kill as many deer and antelope as they could and hang their bodies from the fenceposts along the freeway as a gory decoration. This was difficult to explain to my son as we drove by. No meat was used, the animals were just shot, hung and left to rot…lots of them.
In our new home, one of the best hiking places is now off limits for many families because it is littered with deer carcasses from illicit hunts where the hunters are killing and then leaving the animals behind. This was a popular place for families to go outdoors and ride mountain bikes, take the dogs out, etc., but this activity has made it both upsetting for the kids and dangerous for the dogs.