Friday, January 17, 2014

Humanitarians don't make death theats

There's a sad update to the Texas rhino hunt story. The auction winner Corey Knowlton is being target with death threats. Ironically, the comment sections of the news stories about him receiving death threats are filled with calls for his death.

This isn't simply idiot hunting, as this is a genuine trend that can easily be witnessed by pointing ones browser to any mention of Knowlton.

A recent Megan McArdle piece about the vitriol women receive from critics online mentions how universal it is for people to make death threats and offensive remarks about groups the target was born into. It's not just one political side that does it.

Keep that in mind when seeing the glee people take in the idea of a stranger being murdered because he paid for the right to shoot an animal. Remember, in their minds, they are the good guys.

But in reality, they are just an angry, ignorant mob. As I said last time, Namibia's community-based natural resource management program uses trophy hunting as both a way to make money and a way to encourage community members to act as game wardens, and shame potential poachers. This program has been heralded by the World Wildlife Fund and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature.

There's nothing positive about mob violence. I think I stopped believing in vigilante justice about the same time I stopped reading Spiderman. There is no end to the harm who think they are a force for "justice" when they smash and scream at the things they hate; things they don't really understand most of the time. They always think they are the good guys when in reality, they are agents of chaos. One can't make the world a better place by killing strangers on the street.

Knowlton is the one doing something positive for rhino conservation efforts and his actions are helping the species recover. His critics are the ones whose actions could make the black rhino go extinct.

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