Didn't mean to come across as against any caliber and didn't mean to infer that carrying a big mag makes one come off as "macho" (that would be pretty hypocritical as I just built a .300 RUM for myself
) My big thing that irks me is people that give hunting and long range hunting in particular a bad name by taking shots that either they or their equipment aren't capable of. Here in Montana, I've seen quite a few animals wounded by people who take 3 shots a year to sight their rifle in and then think that if they can see it they can shoot it. These are the same people that will go out to have a couple beers and brag about how they slung lead into a heard that was way out there.
The public hears these people talking and assumes that everyone that takes a long range shot is just lobbing lead out there like these idiots. They don't understand the time that goes into preparing to make consistent hits range, time that the ethical hunter puts in throughout the year.
Sorry about the rant but this is one topic that drives me nuts. You wouldn't believe how many times I've had to defend myself as a long range hunter and shooter. As soon as I bring up the topic with people who don't know better, I'm automatically lumped in with the guys just out slinging lead. It usually takes a half hour to explain the practice time in the off-season, load development, range finding, ballistic calculations, range dope and shot selection that goes into making one shot on an animal.
Not to get too bunny hugger on everyone but I believe it really comes down to respect for the animal. As long as the animal is dispatched quickly consistently I don't care if you throw a rock. Rock busting and paper punching is the time to push your limits and go extreme. Hunting is when it's time to stick to what you've practiced and know you can do every time. That could be a bow at 15 yards or a .408 at 1200 depending on the persons equipment and skill but it still comes down to knowing that limit and being responsible with it.
Sorry I'll get off my soapbox now. Again I didn't mean to offend anyone based on their caliber of choice. I feel confident that members here are proficient with whatever weapon they use and know and practice their limits. This probably wasn't even a good place for this rant as everyone here knows and respects the level of practice and preperation required in our sport.