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Should Big Game Hunting Be Allowed?

With the uproar over the killing of the beloved Zimbabwe lion Cecil, people are questioning the idea of trophy hunting. Should big game hunting for sport be allowed?

71% of writers and pundits say no
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Should Big Game Hunting Be Allowed?  

Writers and pundits who say or about the topic, "Should Big Game Hunting Be Allowed?"
last 24 hours | latimes
The lesson of Cecil: Big-game trophy hunting should be outlawed - Los Angeles Times
"...Every lion or black rhino or bear that is hunted purely to be a trophy is a Cecil in some way it may not be famous to tourists, but it is an animal that functions in the world, sometimes with its mates and its offspring, sometimes not. It is a sentient being, killed for no other reason than its value as an ornamental object to the hunter, as a conquest. It's not being killed for food or protection.I have never heard a rational justification for trophy hunting: "The animal was a danger to livestock, other animals, people." Then have game wardens or wildlife officials dispatch the animal. "The animal population is too large to sustain itself." Again--have wildlife officials cull a herd. (And my favorite:) "Funds raised from auctioning off a hunt help fund wildlife protection efforts." Really? How about auctioning off an up-close photo safari? How about fundraising without sacrificing a member of the species you're trying to raise money to save?..." see full article


867 days ago | frontburner.dmagazine
Dallas Big-Game Hunter Is Next Target of Outrage - D Magazine
"...Me personally, I don't like to kill big animals. Too messy. But I think I understand the allure for big-game hunters. Even hunting quail is thrilling. And I know an argument can be made, strangely enough, that hunting animals responsibly can be an effective tool in conservation. Read this sad, fascinating GQ story about an elephant hunt, if you don't believe me.All of which is to say: hunting, it's a complicated topic. There isn't much middle ground. That's why I can't understand why Kerry Krottinger let National Geographic into his house. Krottinger might be the most ethical hunter ever to pull a trigger. He might donate large sums every year to animal conservation. It won't matter. Because when you surround yourself with your trophies and pose proudly in front of them for National Geographic, you know you are going to get hassled. You are asking to get hassled...." see full article


867 days ago | csmonitor
Why we no longer idolize big game hunters - Christian Science Monitor
"...What has fundamentally altered our view of trophy hunting is the moral shift that comes as the result of an amalgam of factors, including film, celebrities, and even vegan trends pushed by animal rights groups. According to a Harris Interactive poll commissioned by the Vegetarian Resource Group, about 5 percent of Americans that's about 16 million people say that they never eat meat, fish, seafood, or poultry. Of these vegetarians, about half say they are vegan.It all adds up to basic moral development of our species over a long period of time, according to Harvard psychologist Steven Pinker.Dr. Pinker discussed this moral development in his book, "The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined."..." see full article


867 days ago | huffingtonpost
Why Is Big-Game Hunting So Repulsive? - Huffington Post

"...Big-game hunting has become repulsive. Why? It was not always so. I remember as a child -- the middle-to-late 1960's -- being taken by my parents to the Field Museum in Chicago. We viewed row upon row of glass cases containing big-game specimens shot dead in hunting expeditions. Teddy Roosevelt's sons, as I recall, Theodore, Jr., and Kermit, contributed an especially large quantity of "trophies" to the Museum from their 1920's expeditions across Asia. They even killed a giant panda.They hunted their prey at a time when big-game hunting was considered sport. That it was ever considered sporting to track down and kill large animals is in need of explanation. For, when viewed in historical context, big-game hunting seems to be an outgrowth of all that was wrong and wicked and distorted about late-nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century Western culture and society...." see full article


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868 days ago | bustle
Why Did Walter Palmer Kill Cecil The Lion? The Animal's Death Is Symptomatic Of A Systematic Trophy Hunting Crisis
"...It would be prudent to perceive Cecil's death as part of the larger system that allows trophy hunting to continue, rather than within a vacuum of just Palmer. If legal trophy hunting actually did contribute to the conservation of endangered species, it might make sense from a utilitarian perspective for governments to maintain it, but given that corruption continues to siphon funds generated through this type of funding, and that a treasured animal like Cecil can still be killed by professional hunters even with protections in place, the system clearly isn't stable. Palmer's actions are just one symptom of this instability...." see full article


871 days ago | theguardian
The hunter who killed Cecil the lion doesnt deserve our empathy

"...The population of African lions has been reduced by 50% in the last three decades, says the International Fund for Animal Welfare, and there are now only 32,000. Elephants, leopards, polar bears and giraffes are all hunted for sport too. Shooting an endangered species and calling it sustainable is like waving a fan and thinking you're helping to stop global warming.Follow this argument further and you reach the reasoning that poaching and trafficking do more harm than big-game hunting. True. Wildlife trafficking is worth $7-10bn, and is the fifth most profitable illegal market worldwide. Yet in many countries where poaching is rampant, policing is patchy and punishment often nothing more than a fine. Yes, poaching is more damaging than trophy hunting. Murder is worse than grievous bodily harm, technically, but I'm comfortable strongly objecting to both...." see full article


872 days ago | thinkprogress
What Walter Palmer Did Wasnt Hunting
"...Just 20,000 African lions survive today, down from a population of about half a million in the middle of the 20th century. Killing a single lion in 2015 is mathematically equivalent to murdering 400,000 of the planet's roughly eight billion people. And because Cecil's six cubs will likely be killed by the next male to take over the pride, Palmer's wayward arrow and days-later mercy shot may be as devastating to the lion population as the death of three million people would be to humanity.There are two main competing strategies for bringing the lion population onto a sustainable path. Each relies on putting a clear, consistent, and high economic value on the lives of lions and other big game animals that are threatened by poaching. To convince a shepherd he's better off not killing the lion that's eaten a dozen of his animals in the past year, conservationists have to put resources in his hands that are tangibly worth more than the value he's lost to the lion's appetite.s..." see full article


872 days ago | vox
Should lion hunting ever be legal?

"...The research on lion hunting is much less encouraging. Perhaps most concerning is a2010 study led by Craig Packer at the University of Minnesota. Packer and company focused on Tanzania, which has the largest remaining lion population in Africa. They fitted lions with collars, tracked yields from hunting expeditions, and designed mathematical models to account for things like the spread of lion illness.What they found was alarming: "Trophy hunting appears to have been the primary driver of a decline in lion abundance in the country's trophy hunting areas" and may even be reducing populations in protected national parks. There's no evidence that legalized trophy hunting is on net helping lion populations in Tanzania; on the contrary, it appears to be accelerating their decline...." see full article


872 days ago | vox
Cecil the lion: The killing thats enraged the internet, explained

"...The biggest problem, according to a 2012 study coordinated by Duke Universityresearchers, is loss of habitat. The more human populations expand, the less space lions have to roam and hunt. Moreover, it brings human and lion populations into contact, making humans more likely to kill them."Hunting areas are extensive, so the fate of lions depends on how well user-communities manage them," the 2012 study concluded. In other words, keeping the world's already frail lion populations from getting much smaller will require the world to carefully and responsibly manage those populations. That didn't really happen here...." see full article


872 days ago | telegraph.c
Trophy hunting can be a lifeline for Africa's wildlife - Telegraph.co.uk
"...Western armchair animal lovers may rail against the ethics of trophy hunting in Africa but it brings considerable income to poor countries. A 2006 scientific paper estimated that trophy hunting generates gross revenues of at least $201 million per year in sub-Saharan Africa: from a minimum of 18,500 clients . It also found that a minimum of 1,394,000 km2 is used for trophy hunting and concluded that it creates economic incentives for conservation over vast areas . Legalised, controlled hunting can be a lifeline for some of Africa's most endangered species and South Africa is leading the way. While most of Africa's black rhino population is under assault from poaching, with a decline from some 500,000 animals at the turn of the 20th century to just over 5,000 today, the white rhino population has grown from 50 in the 1900s to over 20,000 today. And most of those are in South Africa, where you can legally hunt them...." see full article


872 days ago | qz
Cecil the lion didnt have to die: Trophy hunting hurts Africas ecosystems and economies
"...A population decline among apex predators (lions, leopards, etc.) results in a bloated population of prey species (antelope, zebras, wildebeest, etc.). In turn, this results in overgrazing, a depletion of vegetation. Depleted vegetation then fires consequences back up the food chain herbivores die of starvation, then the predators that feed on them (however many are left) starve and die off too.  Economically, the benefits of trophy hunting are similarly exaggerated. A 2004 study (pdf) compiled by scientists at the Terrestrial Ecology Research Unit of the University of Port Elizabeth in South Africa estimated that non-consumptive ecotourism (i.e., photo safaris, etc.) on private game reserves generated more than 15 times the income of livestock or game rearing or overseas hunting. ..." see full article


872 days ago | qz
Cecil the lion didnt have to die: Trophy hunting hurts Africas ecosystems and economies
"...A population decline among apex predators (lions, leopards, etc.) results in a bloated population of prey species (antelope, zebras, wildebeest, etc.). In turn, this results in overgrazing, a depletion of vegetation. Depleted vegetation then fires consequences back up the food chain herbivores die of starvation, then the predators that feed on them (however many are left) starve and die off too.  Economically, the benefits of trophy hunting are similarly exaggerated. A 2004 study (pdf) compiled by scientists at the Terrestrial Ecology Research Unit of the University of Port Elizabeth in South Africa estimated that non-consumptive ecotourism (i.e., photo safaris, etc.) on private game reserves generated more than 15 times the income of livestock or game rearing or overseas hunting. ..." see full article


872 days ago | mirror.c
Cecil the lion was killed in the name of conservation by an idiot who doesn't know what it means

"...And it's that culture of bribes and bungs that mean no government does much to stop the hunting, because while it makes nothing for their country it makes plenty for them.In 2013 I went to Burkina Faso to hand over 23,000 raised by Sunday Mirror readers to set up anti-poaching patrols.Park W, on the border with Niger and Benin, had just 5,000 elephants and was losing 100 every year to poachers who poisoned or shot the animals before taking a chainsaw to their tusks while they were still alive.Yet I was amazed to see that the park's 6,200 square miles were surrounded by EIGHT hunting areas.The same government officials I interviewed about a lack of funding and a lack of animals were also selling hunting licences...." see full article


872 days ago | slate
Shameful Sport

"...It doesn't help Palmer's image that lions in particular are struggling to survive in Africa. A century ago, there were some 200,000 African lions prowling the savannah. Now, according to the last complete assessmentin 2012, there are as few as 32,000 left, living on less than 20 percent of the land they used to roam. They're considered vulnerable by the IUCN Red List, and last October the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposed to list the species as threatened under the Endangered Species Act.But as is true for almost any dwindling resource, rarity begets value. Trophy hunting for lions has increased in recent decades, mostly in the southern and eastern regions of the continent, in Mozambique, Botswana, Zambia, Namibia, South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Tanzania, a country that contains about half of Africa's lions. None of these countries have exceeded a 6 percent take limit recommended by the World Wildlife Fund meaning that none have hunted so many lions that 6 percent of the population is killed in one year...." see full article



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