Walter Palmer, a dentist from Minnesota, is currently the focal point of lots of moral outrage from the Internet over a “hunt” he participated in last month that resulted in the death of a male lion named Cecil. Evidently Palmer paid $50,000 to two local guides for the privilege of killing Cecil, a celebrity in Zimbabwe. According to Palmer, he didn’t know the lion was a famous lion, loved and cherish by the Zimbabwe people. Apparently, Palmer thought it was perfectly legal to kill the lion and was relying on the local guides to make sure everything was nice and legal.
It wasn’t nice. It also wasn’t legal.
The guides reportedly lured Cecil away from the open preserve that he normally lived on so that Palmer could shoot and kill him with a bow and arrow.
Palmer left Zimbabwe before authorities could fully ascertain what happened to Cecil. The two guides who assisted Palmer in killing Cecil are in custody. Palmer is reportedly in hiding in Minnesota. He might be extradited back to Zimbabwe to face charges. Zimbabwean officials haven’t made a formal request for extradition yet.
My guess is they’re waiting to be paid off.
People are outraged that Palmer killed this lion. As distasteful as I find it to kill animals for pleasure, it’s not like this lion was any more special than any of the other animals that are killed by people like Palmer. Every year in Maryland, thousands of people go out into the woods, climb a tree, and wait for a defenseless deer to walk by so they can shoot and kill it.
They call it hunting. I call it killing animals for fun.
I don’t understand why some people like to kill animals for fun. It’s probably based on something ingrained in human DNA from millions of years ago. Thankfully, most people today have lost this trait. They’ve evolved out of it.
Personally, I don’t find what Walter Palmer did was any worse than what other hunters do on a regular basis. This lion wasn’t any more special than any of the deer killed every year in this country. You could even argue that killing a deer is worse than killing a lion. Deer are defenseless and don’t kill other animals. Lions are far from defenseless and routinely kill other animals, both for basic sustenance and for the fun of it. I’m sure Cecil killed more than his fair share of animals over the course of his life. People are outraged over this, but I bet there are a lot of dead zebras who would say that Cecil had it coming.
Until this story came out, I didn’t realize dentists made so much money. If he has fifty grand to spend on an exotic African lion hunt, then he must really be raking it in, financially speaking. If Walter Palmer has fifty grand to blow on an African lion hunt, I’m sure he has more than enough money to pay off the Zimbabwean officials who could request his extradition back to Zimbabwe.