Utah middle-schooler Aryanna Gourdin went on a hunting expedition in South Africa with her dad and among the animals she shot were giraffe and zebra. However, upon posting pictures of her accomplishments on Facebook, the twelve year old received thousands of angry comments including death threats.
The reaction to Aryanna Gourdin’s debacle is similar to the outrage spawned by the death of Cecil the Lion that took place last year. The outrage directed at Walter Palmer who shot and killed Cecil was so vitriolic that he literally had to go into hiding for weeks until the controversy subsided.
In an interview with ABC’s Good Morning America, Aryanna’s father, Eli, said he and his daughter were proud to be hunters and, rightly, told the people harassing his daughter to leave them alone. Aryanna said on her Facebook page that the cost for licenses for hunting in Africa are in the hundreds of thousands of dollars that used to fund animal conservation.
The giraffe she killed also helps the giraffe species since it was elderly, unable to reproduce and posed a danger to other giraffes. Killing him helps the survival of the species since water and other resources are limited where she and her dad went to hunt. The two also ate some of the meat of the animals they killed and donated the rest.
Aryanna and her father should be proud of their accomplishments and shouldn’t feel ashamed for the animals they killed. As the example of the giraffe demonstrates hunting helps animal species survive and funds animal conservation. Things environmentalists favor in theory, but if they can intimidate or condemn the practice of hunting it makes it easier to eradicate humans from the Earth (which is their primary motive).