First of all, we here at The Outdoors & Adventure Blog would like to express our sincerest sympathy to the people of Zimbabwe and all the people in the world who condemn the brutal killing of a mighty creature – Cecil the Lion. While we feature hunting as a sport here, I hope our readers know that the hunting excursions that we talked about are done in the most humane way possible. Furthermore, hunters get permits to kill animals in order to control or balance their population against their environment and they don’t use it as an excuse to be cruel to these animals.
In fact, most tourism agencies that feature hunting in their list of fun things to do have certain rules and guidelines for people who like to hunt wild bears, elks, African buffaloes, lions and other big game hunting animals. For aggressive and dangerously powerful animals, they recommend the large hunting rifles while less aggressive animals can be taken down by airguns or bow and arrows. Tourism departments of countries like Canada, the United States, Russia and other European countries require hunters to be physically fit in order to survive the harsh conditions of the hunting grounds and, if absolutely necessary, survive animal attacks. That’s because out there in the wilderness, the hunter can quickly become the hunted.
The problem with Dr. Walter Palmer is that he didn’t follow any of these rules when he set out to hunt which ended in a very brutal and inhumane killing of a cherished animal. According to the news, he initially poisoned Cecil with raw meat when he lured him for a clear shot of his bow and arrow. But when that didn’t work out, he had the lion suffer for over 20 minutes before the poison killed him slowly, then shot him with a 0.22 caliber hunting rifle and decapitated the poor lion for trophy. That is a lame and lazy way to hunt, he paid the department of tourism of Zimbabwe to torture and kill animals and not to hunt, in fact, he shouldn’t even be called a hunter or an amateur hunter, because he displayed no such characteristics and he made other hunters (real hunters) look bad.
Personally, I think hunting should only be done in areas where predators outnumber humans like the northern forests of Canada and Russia and not in places like Africa. The lions there have a strict territorial system tha they claim, they don’t invade human settlements or threaten their existence and they don’t grow too many for the environment to sustain. I think African nations should ban the killings of endangered species all together!
Pretty soon if the outcry is too great and animal cruelty becomes too much, I may have to re-brand this blog as simply just “The Adventure Blog.” It doesn’t feel right anymore in writing about stuff that involves a lot of violence like this one.
At the moment, the whole world is outraged at what had happened. In fact, they are angrier over this situation than terrorist attacks and other human rights abuses that have been going on lately (I do hope that we will be angry over those stuff too, but being angry about Cecil the Lion is a good start though) and they want to extradite Dr. Palmer and file a lawsuit against him for killing Cecil. However, I hope that this issue will gain enough traction that those who also care about white rhinoceros and elephant hunting will stop permanently and poachers be prosecuted for what they have done.
On personal notes, ancient kings and warriors in the past demonstrate their courage by facing the alpha male lion of their pride and challenge it to the death. They used knives, spears or just their bare hands. That was brave. What Dr. Palmer did was an act of cowardice and he should be ashamed of himself for doing so.