We’ve all been disgusted with the story of the demise of Cecil the Lion at the hands of the dickless dentist. Naturally, this event prompted more coverage about big game hunting in general. It’s truly disturbing that there are all of these enterprises that provide safari experiences to wealthy people so that they can kill trophy animals. And, they kill them from hides, from moving vehicles, they bait them with carcasses and ambush them. They are cowards with deadly toys, overcompensating for some profound vacuum in themselves by lording their power over basically defenseless creatures. Sure, they have claws and teeth, but they never get close enough to make it a fair fight.
I am not a hunter. I think deer are cute and rabbits are adorable. I grew up in the Bronx. Not much of a hunting culture. Had I grown up in a different environment, I might be less anthropomorphic in my perception of these creatures. I understand the need for hunting. I don’t judge hunters. I’m just not one of them. But culling herds for the benefit of the greater deer community, for example, or to put venison on the table, is a far cry from decimating the populations of animals that are struggling to survive our poor stewardship of the planet and its beasts.
I detest poaching, and I don’t condone it, but at least I understand the motive. Humans have created a demand for certain animal items and, naturally, there are those who will satisfy that demand. Pretty basic. What reasons, other than blatant egotism and the need to identify with the most primitive concepts of manhood, can be offered by these modern big game hunters? They belong to clubs, they feed on each other’s egos, and don the costumes of the “man’s man,” the intrepid hunter, the brave warrior. But, the emperors are naked. The costumes are transparent, revealing the nasty little boys pulling wings off flies or burning ants with a magnifying glass. Hopefully, they are a dying breed themselves, and perhaps we can expedite that process.
I can’t fund this (and it would be a criminal thing to do anyway), but just for the sake of imagination (and the small tinge of vengeful satisfaction the very thought brings), what if there were a bounty placed on the trigger fingers of these club members? Rank them in accordance with the kill logs they proudly put online, and price their digits accordingly. Imagine, a million dollars for the trigger finger of whoever is #1 on the list. Make their trigger fingers trophies. I envision a whole subculture of collectors being created, moving silently in the night, chloroformed rags and garden shears in hand, looking to make some quick money while ridding society of a plague. Or, at the very least, forcing them to learn to shoot left-handed (if one is not certain of the handedness of a hunter, then taking both index fingers would be considered acceptable).
Should we begin a Kickstarter campaign? Dollars for Digits? I love it :)