I’ve been following the Melissa Bachman lion killing debate with great interest. As a nature lover I’m heartened to see the outcry that her callous behaviour has spawned. I guess it would be naive to think that hunting doesn’t take place, but I think that the shock value of the Bachman incident is twofold – one, that she’s a woman and two, that she dared to brag about hunting one of South Africa’s Big Five animals.
South African women tend to leave the more robust sports to our men folk and it really doesn’t sit easy on our minds to see a woman sporting a hunting rifle and grinning from ear to ear because she has just shot a magnificent, defenceless lion. I know that women have fought long and hard for equal rights in the world arena, and I appreciate their efforts on our behalf, but somehow as nurturers of the world, hunting just doesn’t seem like one of those jobs that women should share with men unless it’s an absolute necessity. If women start hardening their hearts and becoming cold blooded killers of animals, who will take over from us as nurturers and carers? And what is the next step from killing animals – killing humans?
And talking of equal rights, why didn’t she challenge him without a gun in her hands? What a shame she chose the cowardly way of taking him on. Anyone who has camped in the wilds in Africa can tell you of the thrill of living amongst wild lions. To lie in a tent and hear the deep roar of a male lion nearby is about one of the most thrilling sounds in the world. I guess for Ms Bachman the sound of a gunshot does more for her than listening to an animal calling to its mate. Shame on her!
It’s a sad indictment of our society if this awful act was a publicity stunt because she’s a TV presenter (Michelle hosts “Deadly Passion”). If people need to boost TV show ratings or their image by killing proud animals it doesn’t say much for the rest of the world if we continue to watch these shows and stroke their inflated egos.
Our rhinos are being poached into extinction in this country so it won’t be too long before we are left with the Big Five minus one! If people are going to start on our lions as well, then they are going to have to face the wrath of South Africans. Thank you to all those people around the world who signed petitions (hell yes, I did too!) and who voiced their anger at this woman. It was a debate that I wish hadn’t needed to be brought to light, but if it raised the consciousness of people’s inhumanity to dwindling populations of animals on our planet, then our poor brave lion’s death was not in vain.
Ms Bachman’s post on Twitter alongside her photo – “An incredible day hunting in South Africa! Stalked inside 60 yards on this beautiful male lion … what a hunt!” – elicited a magnificent retort from Ricky Gervais : “Spot the typo!”
Well said Ricky! My sentiments exactly.