By posting this I know I’m opening myself up to unbridled rage of every hipster liberal on the planet, but what the hell. Here was Joe Rogan on the tragic death of a safari guide in the same national park in Zimbabwe where Cecil the lion lived:
A lion killed a safari guide in the same park where Cecil was killed. The safari guide had a name and was loved by the locals. The lion was NOT authorized to kill that person! I hope the other lions will do the right thing and protest!
I’ve kept my mouth shut on this topic for good reason – I couldn’t face the social media backlash from those so angered by the killing of Cecil the lion that they were actively encouraging the murder of Walter Palmer, the dentist who shot him. I wasn’t happy about the death of Cecil and definitely don’t understand the desire to kill for sport, but given a) I didn’t know Cecil, b) don’t understand conservation issues in Zimbabwe, and c) am more concerned with actual human beings being slaughtered across the planet, I wasn’t ready to take up arms and demand Palmer’s severed head be paraded on Instagram.
There is a bizarre culture of self hate amongst (mostly) wealthy white liberals who have it so easy they can care more about their pets and wildlife than say, children starving in developing countries, and most likely their next door neighbors. Yes, human beings can be vile creatures, guilty of environmental destruction, war and acts of horrific depravity, but we should probably remember that we are human beings. Yes, we can be assholes, but also pretty nice when we want to be. If you sincerely believe that humans are evil, it is probably more a reflection of what you think about yourself than anything else. The truth is, lions, dolphins, bears and countless other animals are equally prone to insane acts of wanton violence (apparently dolphins are big practitioners of gang rape), so it stands to reason that they should hate themselves too. Except they don’t, presumably because they have more important shit to do – like survive in hostile environments and feed themselves and their families.
If you are privileged enough to care about the welfare of animals, that’s a fantastic thing – it’s incredibly important and you should feel very good about it. But please, keep a lid on the anger if you aren’t getting outraged about child prostitution, global hunger and disease epidemics in the developing world. Or in other words, issues that actually fucking matter.
Ben Cohen is the editor and founder of The Daily Banter. He lives in Washington DC where he does podcasts, teaches Martial Arts, and tries to be a good father. He would be extremely disturbed if you took him too seriously.