The world vs the dentist who killed a lion

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The world vs the dentist who killed a lion
A photo of Cecil the lion posted online by Ricky Gervais.

Walter Palmer became the most hated dentist in the world for killing a famous lion in Zimbabwe called Cecil. While angry, people are missing a few points.

The story is quite grim, but it is one of those big social animal-related event that we can’t simply miss. In short, Walter Palmer is a dentist in Minnesota. Recently he has been on a safari in Zimbabwe. There he paid at least 50 000 dollars to professional hunters to help him go on a hunt, the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force says.

The lion Palmer killed turned out to be a famous local lion called Cecil. Cecil was very beloved by the people who even had a collar and a tracking device used by an Oxford University research team to keep an eye on him. Officials say the hunters tried to destroy the collar, but failed and it brought the authorities to them.

The news created a huge outrage online and in the real world. People swarmed the dental clinic where Palmer works and left stuffed animals and flowers as a memorial for Cecil. Celebrities also went public in urging for justice. Late-night TV host Jimmy Kimmel choked up while discussing Cecil’s killing during his broadcast Tuesday night and called it a “disgusting tragedy.” He urged people to donate to the wildlife preservation group who had previously been keeping track of the lion, by visiting wildcru.org.

Photos of Palmer taking a selfie with the dead animal swarmed the internet. The dentist claimed he thought everything was legal and that he “regrets” that his “pursuit of an activity I love and practice responsibly and legally resulted in the taking of this lion”.

What this man is saying is basically he isn’t sorry for the killing of the animal. He is sorry it was a famous animal and people noticed. As grim as it may seem, he has a point here. If this was just a “regular” lion, most people wouldn’t notice.

There have been constant campaigns on the internet to ban trophy hunting. Yet, most people don’t really notice or take a stand. It took the killing of a 13-year-old famous animal to make people notice. Hopefully Cecil’s death would not be in vain and it can actually lead to something this world needs if it wants to call itself “civilized”: A ban on trophy hunting. It is all fine if you want to go on a safari, but you should only be looking at the animals through a pair of binoculars and a digital camera and nothing else.

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