You may think you are having a bad day, but I assure you Walter Palmer, DDS, wild animal murderer, is having a worse one.
Everyone has probably heard of Walter Palmer by now. He is a dentist from Minnesota who paid $50,000 to hire a guided hunt in Zimbabwe that resulted in the killing of a beautiful 13-year-old lion named Cecil. Cecil was said to be a beloved animal within the Gwayi Conservancy of Hwange District who never bothered anybody. Cecil was left skinned and beheaded on the outskirts of the National Park.
The public outcry against the killing of Cecil has been relentless, and for good reason. We are tired of seeing pictures across social media of young girls, middle-aged men and everything in between posing with their latest hunting trophy. We are heartbroken that lions, tigers, rhinos, elephants and so many endangered species are being mercilessly killed in the name of sport.
In many ancient cultures, animals were revered. The people would kill animals to use for meat, clothing and tools, but they would often have a ceremony to thank them and celebrate them for their sacrifice.
This kind of hunting and killing wild endangered animals as a sport to wear as a badge of honor feels selfish and senseless.
It is illegal to kill any animal within the boundaries of the Hwange National Park. Walter Palmer and his hired hunters lured Cecil out of the park in the dead of night by tying a dead animal to the back of their vehicle.
They got out their crossbows and shot Cecil with arrows. Hunting by bow and arrow is becoming more popular because it is a silent killer. The huge animal fell in pain, but he did not die. He sat suffering and alone for 40 hours until the murderers came back with a rifle and finished the job.
If this is not heartbreaking enough, they disrespected the animal by skinning and beheading him. The head has still not been found.
Walter Palmer says he had no idea that Cecil the lion was a local favorite and wore a GPS tracking collar as part of a study. He is placing full blame on his "professional guides" who were supposed to know better. I think we all know that hunting and killing one of the Big 5 wondrous creatures of our planet comes with a high price, say $50,000, and perhaps the companies who are hired to commit such acts might not be conforming to strict ethical standards. This is certainly not the first time animals have been lured away from national parks to be killed.
To cover up their illegal act, Palmer and his two guides destroyed Cecil's collar and removed his head.
Cecil is said to have an estimated 24 lion cubs. Now that Cecil is dead, the next lion in the hierarchy of the lion kingdom, Jericho, will most likely kill all of the cubs to insert his own bloodline into the females. If that happens, then Walter Palmer and his unethical guides will be responsible for the death of seven lions that live in a protected park in Zimbabwe.
This isn't Walter Palmer's first rub against the laws of the land put in place to protect animals. He has killed a black bear 40 miles outside the area he was licensed to hunt in, and then lied about it to U.S. Fish and Wildlife.
In 2015 there are several animals feared to go extinct this year and the white rhino is one of them. The White Rhino is one of the most endangered species left on the planet due to heavy poaching. In 2014 approximately 1,215 rhinos were killed, making it the worst killing year ever for this humungous creature. Walter Palmer killed a "world record" white rhino in South Africa. He is seen posing proudly in a photo with this massive lifeless creature.
In 2010, Walter Palmer traveled to Zimbabwe to kill a leopard, a species of animal that is listed as "critically endangered." There is a picture of Walter Palmer, shirtless, holding up the bloody lifeless body of a leopard he had just killed.
And if global warming doesn't kill off the polar bear species, hunters like Palmer who enjoy killing them as a spectator sport, may finish off the job.
There is a flood of outrage on social media against Walter Palmer. His website has been taken down. His practice is boarded off. Palmer has fled with his family and is in hiding. The messages of vitriol around the Internet is staggering. If you Google "Walter Palmer dentist" you will find a search result of information and reviews for him, and at the top is an image of man showing his middle finger. As of 3 p.m. on Tuesday the 28th of July, there were 3,434 scathing reviews of the dentist, calling him everything from a sick twisted killer and a murdering scumbag to a cowardly pathetic man with a small penis.
I am happy that this week I didn't have to discover that my crowns and root canals were funding a man who uses my money to kill the worlds most rare and beautiful creatures. That my veneers didn't help pay for the destruction of the last few white rhinos. Or that my cavity fillings were funding the slow and painful death of a spectacular male lion in Zimbabwe.
What we say about Walter Palmer, endangered species killer and fellow American, matters. As a community, as a country, and as fellow inhabitants of the planet earth, we need to send a clear message that these acts of violence against the endangered and protected animals that we share this planet with will not be accepted or tolerated any more. While the hateful words, sadness and frustration coming from outraged Americans will not bring Cecil back, perhaps it will serve as a strong warning to other hunters from America and around the world who have big money to fund the killing of innocent creatures to feed their own ego and adorn their mansion walls as trophies.
Cecil, your pain and suffering and your senseless death has not gone unnoticed. We will rage against the dying of the lion.
Find Megan Woolsey at www.thehipmothership.com, www.facebook.com/thehipmothership and www.twitter.com/HipMothership