The statement in this picture is the eye of the storm that I would like to discuss.
When reading such declarations from killers who claim to have respect for their victims, it is hard to stay blind in front of the attempt to clean the hunter’s conscious with the unholy water of false respect. But furthermore, I think that in this empty emotional charade there is an important game of deception that is being played. A hunter respects a fellow hunter after a kill, but when the hunter needs respect from me, someone who does not hunt, or might even have negative feelings about this sort of blood sport, my respect must be earned through the imagination of the hunter’s respect for his victim. By doing this, the hunter makes sure that I understand how hunting is not exclusively about blood lust, being a game of honor and sadness due to respectable animal adversary. In order to buy my respect, the hunter makes me believe that he is paying respect for the animal.
It’s important to keep in mind that hunters are not warriors, but thieves and assassins. When you shoot an animal from your hiding place several yards away, without the animal even noticing you, this is what you are. Assassins have no respect for their victims.
The killing of the victims is an act that is devoid of any honor. The declaration of respect is the mask of crying that hides a bloodthirsty smile.
Hunting sells us the illusion of sadness mixed with respect to the animal. The opposite of that charade is the charade of disrespect to the animal, under the happy disguise of bravery. Tourists who go to the Far East often enjoy themselves by taking picture next to living carcass of a tiger or a lion who are being drugged up all day long so they can serve as a tempting photo opportunity. The people who do this demonstrate bravery over the mental crushing of the animal, while the hunters demonstrate a reflective sadness over a worthy kill. The truth is much more simple and naked. It’s an exploitation of a weaker creature, either by taking his life forever or by hijacking it.
Both extravagant masks of this ugly comedia de’llarte are taken completely off in two cases that are parallel to those I have described. By comparing between these parallels we can clearly see how the hunter and the tourist are fooling us.
The real face of hunting can be seen through poaching. Poachers are hunters who do not hide behind pretty pictures and empty slogans. They brutally kill their victims, living their carcasses behind. They do not need to document themselves by taking pictures with the dead and they do not need respect among people who do not benefit directly from their poaching.
Those who give drugs to tigers are being seen more clearly by looking at those who call themselves “lion trainers” in circuses. They break the spirit of the animal by force, not by chemical substances, when no illusion is being needed in order to prove superiority, and all energy can be focused on the show itself.
This is the saddest of the diabolical comedies that I have seen. The hiding of the victim behind the mask of a human – This is what we are always trying to do. We give humanity in form of respect to hunting and we give happiness and joy to the defeating of the drugged down beast. Our favorite thing of them all, the thing that makes us spare their lives a little longer, is when we can dress them as little humans and laugh at them.