[guest post by Dana]
For those who don’t know about nationally adored Cecil the Lion, here’s a brief recap: A dentist from Minnesota went to Zimbabwe and paid $50,000 to go on a guided hunting expedition. Apparently the guides and Dr. Palmer were able to lure Cecil out of the Hwange National Park, where it had protected status, and onto a neighboring game farm. Then, according to guides, Dr. Palmer killed the 13 year old lion with a bow and arrow. As a result, Dr. Palmer now faces charges of poaching. This week, Dr. Palmer apologized saying that he believed the hunt was a legal hunt and the he regretted killing such a protected and adored animal. Not good enough. He is not only at the center of a raging debate about the ethics of big-game hunting, but is also the target of threats and verbal attacks. As a result, Dr. Palmer has kept his office closed for the past few days, directing patients to see other dentists. Outside of his office, beyond the memorial set up for Cecil, protesters carried signs reading KILLER. Protester Lori Peterson explained: “These animals need a voice.”
Now the cries of Cecil have reached Capitol Hill and 4th District Rep. Betty McCollum is seeking justice for the lost lion and is calling for a federal investigation into his death:
“To bait and kill a threatened animal, like this African lion, for sport cannot be called hunting, but rather a disgraceful display of callous cruelty.”
“For those of us committed to ending poaching of iconic African species I strongly believe the U.S. Attorneys’ Office and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service should investigate whether U.S. laws were violated related to conspiracy, bribery of foreign officials, and the illegal hunting of a protected species or animal,” McCollum said.
She added that she would actively pursue a legislative path to protecting other endangered animals in Africa and elsewhere.
Answering the unasked question, no, McCollum has not demanded a federal investigation into Planned Parenthood nor has she sought justice for any babies being crushed and dismembered. For that matter, if protester Lori Peterson’s Facebook page is any sort of reference, she too has been silent, making no impassioned statements about
animals babies needing a voice but making plenty of pleas to protect animals…
Once more, we’re slapped in the face by the cold reality that in the baby slaughterhouses, a baby in the womb’s value comes only in death and dismemberment. Cecil, lucky lion that he was, had the value that all of God’s creature do, but was also anthropomorphized and ascribed a higher worth and status by untold numbers who not only loved him but diligently worked to make sure he was legally protected and kept from harm. Ironically, it is the lion being mourned by people everywhere, including politicians, those shouting our bodies, ourselves and those who desperately want us to believe that evil is not what we see and know to be true. Unsurprisingly, Cecil is quickly becoming the embodiment and quintessential symbol of the blameless: the one whose life was cruelly ended by the hands of a brutal man. This while the smallest miracles of innocence, whose tiny heartbeats echo God, are easily ignored.
We have lost our way.
Update by JD
Lions > babies