Trophy Hunting, and Why it is the Most Cowardly Thing Humans Do

This blog has been quiet over the last few weeks because I just haven’t thought of anything that is worthy of a post. But then this happened, and I couldn’t stay quiet.

Photo: AFP/Getty Images)
Photo: AFP/Getty Images)

By now you’ve heard about the idiot dentist, Walter Palmer, who is a trophy hunter, who hunted and killed Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe. Not only did he kill him, but he and three others lured the lion out of the sanctuary, shot it with a bow and arrow, and then followed the injured lion until they could shoot him. They then skinned and beheaded Cecil. Just typing this brings tears to my eyes.

But Cecil isn’t the first victim of heartless horrible people. This happens all the time. Cecil was an icon for Zimbabwe so this is getting national news…which is great because people are obviously outraged. However, you don’t hear about the other hundred upon hundred of trophy hunters who kills innocent animals all over the world. Last year, 1,004 rhinos were killed in South Africa alone, and more than 25,000 elephants were killed by poachers across Africa.

Rhinos are having their horns chopped off, elephants are having their ivory tusks and hooves cut off, and lions, tigers, polar bears, bears, and countless other animals are being killed so their heads can be hung on some asshole’s wall. This isn’t just happening on land, it’s also happening the water. Sea lions, sharks, dolphins, fish, whales all fall victim to this. There are only 3,000 tigers left in the wild. There is ONE white rhino left in the WORLD. At the turn of the century, there were an estimated 200,000 Asian elephants. Today there are probably no more than 35,000 to 40,000 left in the wild.

I have no other way to describe these people who willingly go and hunt these precious animals other than as cowardly assholes.

This is a huge issue. We are looking at complete mass extinction way too soon. And for no other reason than human selfishness. If you don’t think this affects you, do some research. Nature makes the world go around, and we are killing nature and its inhabitants every single day.

Americans are the biggest problem when it comes to trophy hunting. Sure, there are some hunters who are not Americans, but we make up the vast majority of the problem. Thankfully, there are only a couple of airlines left that will allow the transportation of animals trophies back to the US, making it harder and less enticing for people to go overseas to kill. But, that isn’t stopping a lot of people.

And while I don’t support deer hunting here in the US, I do understand that it won’t lead to a mass extinction. I still think it’s wrong, especially when there are places people can go where they PAY to kill a deer within a controlled and caged environment. I’m not making this up. That’s like paying to go to the zoo and kill helpless animals who have no where to run. It’s disgusting.

And, on an entirely different note, we are killing animals who hurt humans…even though the humans were in the animal’s environment. Don’t we have self-defense laws? Why shouldn’t these animals have the same? Take the story of the boy who was attacked by a bear in the Smoky Mountains. Yes, I feel awful for the boy as he had severe damage done, but then officials went out and killed the bear….but they killed the wrong one! So then, they went out and killed another bear…eventually identifying it as the bear that attacked the kid. So, two bears were killed because they attacked a person who was in the bears home. Makes sense, right?

I saw a TV show during Shark Week that was on while I was at bar (so I couldn’t hear the TV) where humans were capturing sharks and drilling with a drill into it’s fins. Drilling. Now, I don’t know what their reasoning was, but I can’t imagine that the shark/dolphin/whale appreciates being drilled into.

I know I’ve gotten a little off topic, but my whole point is this–Humans have absolutely no right to kill or harm these innocent animals. They deserve to live on this earth too. They make this earth better while we destroy it everyday. To those that are trophy hunters, I hope you get eaten by the next lion that you go after, or trampled by the next elephant you try to track.

These animals deserve rights to. Want to help? Here’s what you can do:

  • Talk about it. This is an issue that gets ignored all the time. It shouldn’t be ignored. Talk about it. Start conversations. Voice your opinion. It’s conversations that lead to action.
  • If you see something, say something. These kinds of things don’t just happen overseas. Animals are being illegally killed (I personally don’t think it matters if it’s legal or not) all the time in the US. Speak up. We have to be the voice.
  • Donate to an organization who works to fight to protect against animal poaching.

We can’t just sit back and let this happen. We can’t just feel bad for the animals. We have to do something, say something, change something.

Goals from the New Year Half Way Checkpoint

How is it July? I’m pretty sure we just celebrated New Year’s Eve, right? At the beginning of the year, like any other list maker, I made a list of things I wanted to accomplish this year. Not necessarily resolutions, but just goals and things that I wanted to cross off. Here is how my list started.

  1. Travel more. Go out of state at least 3 times.
    Check (after this weekend). This year we’ve been to Las Vegas, Indianapolis, and we are headed to Nashville this weekend. We will also be going to Florida for Christmas.
  2. Make yoga a habit. Go more than once a week.
    Check (almost). I’ve been going almost once a week. I think there have been a few weeks where I didn’t make it at all, but I’ve been working hard at fitting in one yoga class a week in addition to spinning and weight training, and I can definitely tell the work is paying off. I can now do this! 
  3. Do a DIY project for our new home.
    Check! We built two vegetable gardens (as seen in the above photo) and made some of our own art for inside the house.
  4. Give more to charity/volunteer more. 
    No check. I did volunteer to pour beer at a charity event–but that’s not the kind of volunteerism I was going for when I made this list. I’ll work on it.
  5. Visit a local winery or brewery and do a tour. 
    No check. We are hoping to go to a local distillery in the next month or so for a tour, though so I think that counts!
  6. Shop less. Buy more pieces that are timeless.
    Umm…no check. I am definitely shopping less–but definitely still buying cheap pieces that will only last a season or two. It’s much easier for me to buy 5 shirts that are under $20 rather than 1 shirt that is $80 and will last me awhile. I’ll keep working on it.
  7. Teach Rogue to be a better off-leash dog.
    We are getting there. And when I say we, I mean I’m getting better. He’s run away from us (me) 3 times when he’s been off leash and I think I had a mini heart attack each time. Not fun. So, yes, I am very anxious when we leave the door open because he could escape at any minute, and yes I still panic when I leave him with other people because he could escape from them as well. But, he’s listening more and hasn’t tried to make a run for it for awhile. We are learning together. 
  8. Save money for trip to Europe in 2016.
    Check…not fully saved but we are working on it. I really really want to take a trip next year to Ireland with Ryan. He’s on board, but being the financially responsible guy he is, wants to make sure we save rather than putting it on a credit card (my solution!!). So, we are saving every week. And I’m sure that will be bumped up even more in the next few months. It’ll be worth it though. Gotta control my impulse purchases!

So, mid-way through the year I think I’m doing okay on my goals. What goals/resolutions did you make at the beginning of the year?