Emerald’s Gem Box: Maybe We Should Rethink Priorities

For the past week there have been headlines and turmoil over the 19-year-old teenage girl who, along with her apparently wealthy parents, takes African Safari hunting trips. She then, in turn, has begun posting her kills onto her personal Facebook Page. Her name is Kendall Jones. She is a Texas Tech University cheerleader and an avid hunter. She began taking trips to Africa, with her parents, at the age of nine. So where’s the problem? It seems that animal lovers, all over the world, are accusing her of animal abuse, killing endangered species and have demanded that her pictures be removed from Facebook (too awful to look at). A petition to force Kendall to remove her page, because it “promoted animal cruelty” had gained over 40,000 signatures in just a week. Facebook’s CEO did in fact fold to the pressure and removed Kendall’s photos from her Facebook page. Now, there is even a petition circulating to have Kendall banned from the entire continent of Africa. Kendall is even receiving death threats. Does anyone, other than me, find the irony in people that are so upset over killing an animal, that they-themselves send death threats to a 19 –year-old child? Think about that one a while. (But that’s not really what this column is about). Now, I personally don’t find anything wrong with what Kendall is doing. I grew up hunting. I was also taught to never kill anything that you don’t plan on eating. We killed deer, dove, squirrels, rattlesnakes; and ate every single thing we killed. The problem with killing an elephant and taking it “home” to eat it – is that animal is way too big to take home for one family to eat. Thus, according to Kendall’s posts and interviews and the people who have “dug into” the truth, show that she gives the animal to the local villagers to eat. One elephant or rhinoceros will feed approximately 100 villagers. So many television commercials, nowadays, are begging for Americans to send just five cents a day to starving children in foreign countries; Kendall is feeding more than what I could in just one safari hunt. What I do have a serious problem with is all this outrage over killing a few pretty animals when there is child abuse and rapists and murderers and sex-trafficking around us every day – and not one complaint or uproar is heard. Not one petition (which I despise that word) is circulated to help any of these children – but let an elephant, lion or leopard get killed and you would think the world was coming to an end. Just last week a man left his 22-month-old toddler in the back seat of his car all day. He even had gone back to his car during his lunch hour and then returned to work. He then went to a store, after work, and then he suddenly discovered/remembered his child in the back seat. It was then determined that he and his wife had just previously searched the internet on how long it takes for a human to die in a car, in the middle of summer. So, now we have a 22-month old dead and the sad, sad fact is a video has been posted online accusing police and prosecutors of rushing to the wrong judgment, of the father; and more than 11,000 people have signed an online petition urging the district attorney to drop the murder charges. REALLY??? Last month, there were arrests in Tallahassee for sex-trafficking, after police rescued two girls from motel rooms, ages 16 and 17. These arrests were also deemed a “tip of the iceberg” for the larger enterprise that they might find in the Tallahassee area. Here are young girls being held slaves and sold for sex, yet the outrage of society is over the killing of lions and zebras. Besides the one story I heard and the one story I read about this sex-ring, I haven’t heard another peep out of society about this. No petitions to help these girls in their struggles they are about to face. No marches or videos to help police find the hundreds of men that are holding these girls captive. Oh no, instead society has chosen to fight the battle for the animals in Africa. With all the images that can be seen on Facebook alone, the fact that dead animals are considered the worst, is disturbing. The “powers-to-be” decide to remove images of dead animals but leave the images of barely dressed women for all our 12 and 13 year old children to see. The pornographic and soft-porn images are now considered the norm and hunting photos are now considered evil and not morally okay. What should we, as a society in whole, prefer Kendall do in her spare time instead of hunting in Africa? She’s not out drinking and driving; she’s not out smoking dope or using drugs; she’s not out getting arrested; she is hunting with her father. Given the choices of what a 19-year-old could be doing in all her spare time, I personally think her choices in life seem morally okay. Until then…..see you around the town

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