Thursday, October 14, 2010

Hunting lion in South Africa

There's a piece in today's Times which touches on the movie White Lion and the big business and sport of lion hunting in South Africa.

Yes, sport. And big business

$40,000 a head for a lion bred in captivity: Canned hunting.

On the subject of which, in the early 80's  (I think), the late great, lauded heart surgeon Chris Barnard, South African, who performed the first heart transplant ever, was photographed infamously in the more infamous girlie rag Scope, on a drunken hunting trip, literally throwing cans of beer at a wounded lioness. [I've looked for references to this article, but can find nothing online...]

Hunting for trophies makes me sick. I have sat near 'hunters' on flights to South Africa, the proverbial loud Americans who are going to "Africa" on "safari" to "hunt lion". With fat smiles and complacent confidence about the wild continent.

Sick.

There are ads in inflight SAA magazines showing men squatting proudly beside huge dead animals, holding the animal under one hand the gun in the other.

What men.

I am not against shooting a deer if you are going to eat it. Or a South African bokkie for that matter. Perhaps I should be, and I'm not sure that I could, even though perhaps I should. Since I eat meat.

But a person with a gun against an animal for fun? For sport? Sport is a competition between equals! I feel the same way about shark and big game fishing. Why not just bait a hook with meat and drag it behind a truck to catch a leopard, reel it in, hook in mouth, spitting and snarling and clawing, hoist it over the side and wack it on the head.

Wow. You impress me.

Yes, this post says nothing useful. It is a rant. A self undulgent blast of hot hair full of contradictions.

Now I'm going to the butcher for my sausages.
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