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Opinion: Ce-Kill the Lion

Cecil the lion at Hwange National Park

Hunting and racing are a lot alike.

Holding that steering wheel and holding that rifle both mean you better be responsible.

-Dale Earnhardt

Obliterating the King of the Jungle

Headlines worldwide announced the tragic and senseless murder of Cecil the Lion. Walter Palmer, a dentist from Minnesota dared to lure the lion out of a wildlife park in Zimbabwe, and then killed it, to stoke his own ego.

Legal Implications

Does our legal industry have a solid footing when it comes to crimes committed like these worldwide, and not just in the United States? Already, the Fish and Wildlife and Department of Justice are investigating the case to see if any American laws have been violated in this tragedy.

Requests are pouring in from Zimbabwean officials demanding that Cecil’s killer, Walter Palmer, be extradited to Zimbabwe immediately. The United States and Zimbabwe signed an extradition treaty in 2000, and Zimbabwe hasn’t pressed charges (as of August 3rd 2015) against Palmer. Given the current situation, it is unclear at the moment what the course of action will be for either country regarding Cecil’s death.

As with all tragedies that have taken place in recent times, lawmakers scramble to make amends. Nationally, bills are now being drafted to discourage trophy hunting. Our grandmas were right when they said that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. However, will newly passed laws be able to reverse the damage done in the name of illegal hunting? Cecil the Lion’s story made front page, but there are so many other trophy hunters who get away scot-free.

 

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