This strange obsession of the wealthy to pay large sums of money to hunt and kill rare species typifies this last and most ruthless form of capitalism. It is a collective form of psychosis in that these people must know in some shadowy precinct of their near deadened souls that species are going extinct by the thousands each year thanks to human activity, but believe that killing off what is rare will somehow make them feel more alive.
They betray their own pitiful, faux prowess and reveal the depravity of their own unmet grief at it all by extinguishing that life for a photo. But then that emptiness must rush in again and grip their nearly dead souls like a vice until the next paid kill.
I would like to say I feel sorry for them, but I don’t. Their loathsome and willful dearth of soul makes them appear like ghouls with craven jaws looking to devour the last remaining beauty of a dying earth. Are they any different than the so-called captains of industry who see pristine forests or mountain tops and think the removal of such for fleeting monetary profit as a good thing? Or of the military industry and weapons manufacturing sector which create uranium laced bullets or marine killing sonar? Or factory farm owners who house millions of sentient beings in squalid, tortuous conditions? Or fossil fuel companies who think an oil spill in a life drenched coral reef would be a ‘welcomed boost’ to local communities?
A philosophy that reduces the living earth to mere capital will in the end reduce humanity itself to dust.
Photo is of Bryan Kinsel Harlan, a trophy hunter from Texas, who was photographed with this glorious creature after he paid $110,000 to slaughter it in the northern Himalayan region of Gilgit-Baltistan. He said: “It was an easy and close shot. I am pleased to take this trophy.”
Kenn Orphan 2019