Marquel, TPVs NYTimes Illogic Section correspondent, was trying to reach his bathroom using a serpentine approach, when he tripped and read that Outcry for Cecil the Lion Could Undercut Conservation Efforts.
Trophy hunting, which has been viewed under a harsh public spotlight since the killing of Cecil, a lion in Zimbabwe, is part of a complex economy that is an effective method of conservation, many wildlife experts contend.
- Marquel figured this had to do with the fact that these hunters are rich. And of course he was right. But the idea that saving lions depends on killing them had a certain perverse fascination.
- “What do you mean saving them?” Asked Marquel, “You mean on the wall?”
“Well certainly,” said one expert, “you’ve got to shoot them if you’re going to stuff them, and you can’t save them without stuffing them.”
“You’d be surprised. Rich people want them. Do you know what Lion meat goes for? A hundred bucks and it’s tough. Rich people will pay $20,000 to shoot a lion. Taxes on that help us protect lions, catch poachers, keep them safe. Without hunters we couldn’t save the lions.” He said.
“In a way it is. But it’s necessary.” He said.
“But this works. We save them, we manage them, a few get stuffed. Lions die in the wild.” He said.
“They like the thrill of the chase.” He said. “What thrill? What chase? I heard they had to push Cecil out of his preserve, then attract him with flashlights while that dentist sat in his blind drinking gin and tonics.” I said.
“Don’t worry so much. You are of course right. But except for Cecil, a big mistake, all the lions they shoot we raise on farms. It’s like raising veal or steak. But don’t say a word of it.”
“That would hardly decorate a wall.” He said.