I HONESTLY cannot find the words to describe how I felt last week when I saw a photo someone had shared on Facebook.
It was a picture of a dead male lion—placed in a sitting position—and behind it a grossly overweight man, holding a rifle in his right hand, with a woman—presumably his wife—sat just behind.
It wasn’t hard to go to Google and type in ‘Trophy Hunter Kills Lion’—and there are literally hundreds of photographs with both men and women proudly showing off their ‘kills’.
I find it hard to view pictures of such barbarity. But if that isn’t bad enough, alongside the poor animal is a smiling assassin. And I do mean killer. Because that’s what these people are: Killers.
What is wrong with them? I ask this question seriously—because there has to be a fairly major issue with their mental stability.
Whether you’re a big cat fan or not (though surely most of us are) what right-minded person could really take any pleasure from killing these masterful kings of the cat world? And simply for entertainment. Does it genuinely give them a sense of achievement or is it really all about power?
I believe they are sick, unhappy people with no sense of worth and very low self-esteem. And sadly, because they have the financial wherewithal to do it, they can big themselves up by taking the lives of these beautiful, powerful giants of the animal kingdom—and then bragging about it.
It honestly makes me feel ashamed to be a human being. But, more to the point, how are these people even given free license to shoot and kill these amazing animals? Who is allowing this to happen? It has recently come to my attention that in South Africa they are actually breeding lions just for the trophy hunters to shoot them. Can this be acceptable?
Clearly killing our planet by polluting the air, filling the oceans with vast amounts of waste, destroying the rain forests and melting the polar ice caps isn’t enough for some.
By going out and killing for pleasure, these callous cretins are throwing the natural balance of the animal world out of sync, decimating the food chain, and, for sure, driving many of the animals we’re privileged to live alongside into extinction.
And once they’re extinct, what happens then?
We need to understand that the natural world, of which we are a part, is inherently capable of looking after itself.
It will survive and recover from hurricanes, tornadoes, fires, floods and earthquakes. If humans weren’t here, everything would spring back to life, because that’s the force of nature.
But we are here—and sadly, because we’re interfering in the natural course of things, it would appear the earth is in a downward spiral.
I understand, to a point, why so many of the things relating to our animals in the wild—which I find so distasteful and unacceptable—happen. However, no matter which way I look at it, I can—and never will—condone the brutal killing of wild animals purely for the entertainment of the ‘sick’ rich.
It’s abhorrent, disgraceful, shameful, shocking, atrocious, deplorable, despicable and totally inexcusable that this is happening in the 21st century.
It HAS to be stopped. There are simply no justifiable reasons why this appalling practice should be allowed to continue.
Pressure must be put on those who partake—and those who allow them to do so.
The killing of our beautiful big cats and other precious wildlife for pleasure, has to be treated as a crime.
And those who indulge must be punished accordingly.
’Til next time,