Ms Brittany’s Leopard

Have you seen this picture?

sci-member-pride-brittany-l-leopard

I saw it on a friend’s Facebook timeline. It spoke about how this woman, Brittany Longoria, had hunted a leopard that was the ninth largest leopard ever hunted, inviting everyone to name and shame. Being trigger happy about this sort of thing, I quickly clicked ‘Share’. Having thought about it a bit, I wonder if it is fair to target just her and not the infrastructure that supports this sort of thing.

So I clicked on the original link and did some quick internet research of my own to try and see both sides of the thing.

Here’e the pro hunting argument as I understand it:

  • It was a legal hunt
  • Hunting money aids conservation. Countries that permit hunting have managed to preserve wildlife better than the ones that don’t. By putting a monetary value to wildlife, you encourage people to preserve it. Even if it is only for the eventual purpose of hunting.
  • The animals that are killed are sick and old that are taking up space better left to the young.

Despite the blatant lies of the radical animal rights crowd, HUNTING IS CONSERVATION.

In fact, right now the AR extremists are lying about a legal leopard hunt to try and crucify a hunter that has contributed millions over the years to wildlife conservation, the African economy, philanthropy, and to habitat preservation. Another FACT that is being intentionally left out is that the leopard was elderly with a mouthful of cracked and missing teeth.

The hunter, Brittany L., did everything right and everything with her hunt was conducted legally and responsibly. Don’t let the extremists win by slandering a good person. #StandWithBrittany #LetAfricaLive

The anti hunting argument is:

  • Other animals kill for food. There is something inherently repugnant in killing for a trophy.
  • If all hunters want to do is help conservation, why don’t they just give the money?
  • There is a natural selection at work in the wild. The young will drive out or kill the old without our assistance.
  • At the end of the day, the philanthropy, conservation support, everything is only about the fun you have when you kill. Think about what that says about you.

Have I revealed a bias here? I will leave you to draw your own conclusions.

Meanwhile, I will do what I like doing best and talk about stories.

I have always been a huge admirer of Jim Corbett and he was a trophy hunter (till he realized the impact his actions had on the environment and took to photography instead). He continued to kill man eating leopards and tigers though. In his account of the killing of the Mohan Man-eater, he describes how while wandering through the jungle, he realizes that the man eating tiger is crouched on a rock preparing to spring down to where he  is. He decides to make a round detour and approach the tiger from behind. As he approaches the tiger, he realizes that the tiger is in fact asleep! Even as he proceeds to shoot the animal, because he has no way of defending his action if he doesn’t – the very story begins with a description of the tiger’s killing of a brave child, in his heart of hearts he does not excuse himself. By his own standards, his behaviour has been despicable and cowardly. Killing a sleeping animal with all the advantage on one side? Not sporting.

On the other hand is a different hunting story – Saki’s wickedly funny Mrs. Packletide’s Tiger. You should really just click on the link and read it, but if you must, it’s a story about the wealthy Mrs. Packletide and her lifelong quest to socially upstage her rival – one Loona Bimberton. This she proceeds to do by arranging to shoot an elderly tiger in an Indian jungle. There is of course absolutely no question of any risk to her from the tiger itself – all that has been sorted out. But as she discovers, the incidental expenses are rather high!

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