Following my retirement as Head of Public Affairs, for the Royal Flying Doctor Service in Queensland, Australia, around a decade ago, I happened upon an article titled 'Canned Lion Hunting' and as I had never heard the term before, I read the article and couldn't believe what I was reading. Was this the Greatest Betrayal of the Kingdom of Animals, by humans in our time. The answer to this question is yes and nothing has changed over the past ten years; allow to me digress.
The term canned lion hunting basically means: Lion cubs are taken away from their parents and brought up as pets, usually in Game Farms/Ranches and facilities attracting unsuspecting tourists. Unsuspecting volunteers are also sought to walk with the young lions and pet them. In other words the lions become so familiar with humans; just like domestic cats and dogs.
When the lions reach maturity they are sold off to Trophy Hunt organizations in the final link in the betrayal chain.
Trophy hunters come from around the world for their trophy and can pay up to and over $50,000 to shoot a lion in a confined space. Remember, the lions come to the cowardly hunters as they have no fear of humans.
My curiosity into animal welfare as a whole was sparked by Canned Lion Hunting and so my journey began.
Not an easy walk in the park, up to ten hours a day on the computer reading about and viewing footage of thousands of heinous act of animal cruelty. Initially, I had to harden myself emotionally in order to move forward with an army of animal advocates to create a global awareness of the massive plague of animal cruelty corrupting and destroying our world.
From the elephant ivory, rhino horn and exotic animal trade to atrocious farming practices and disgraceful slaughter houses to barbarous ancient cultural and merciless archaic traditions are but some of the inhumane activities performed by the human animal.
Before moving on I would like to share with you a quote I penned some years back:
"There are insufficient words in the 'world of language' to describe the ignorance, greed and heinous cruelty perpetrated by humans on the 'Voiceless Kingdom of Animals"
~ Stephen Penberthy
There is however, a solution and a means to turn this mindset of human denial and behavior around and that is education and awareness.
Imagine, if all kindergartens, schools, colleges and educational facilities around the world included within their respective curricula - Animal Welfare/Rights, along with the qualities and values of Empathy, Compassion, Care, Kindness and Integrity. We would surely have a kinder world for all living beings. After all, it's the children of today who will be our leaders of tomorrow.
This in the grand scheme of things is not rocket science it's common sense but unfortunately common sense is not that common. The world desperately needs to change. Greed, ignorance, hypocrisy and denial should be buried and reality faced.
In relation to eating animals the children and youth, having been educated will in fact reverse roles with their parents, who have traditionally followed their parents and so on by consuming meat and dairy. It's a process that would work .... children encouraging their parents to think before they eat and seek a cruelty free and much healthier plant based dietary option.
On the other side of the coin we have conservation and sustainability issues of the food chain to consider. Current meat consumption will lead to massive forest destruction over the next thirty or so years, in order to provide sufficient meat/food for an increasing global population to around 10 billion people; currently the figure stands at approximately 7.7 billion. You don't need to be an Einstein, to figure out that at this rate of growth it is totally unsustainable.
For a concise understanding of conservation and sustainability , I commend this video to you - Animal Agriculture and the Resultant Climate Change: https://youtu.be/S7854HbH9Ro herein lies the problem; what's the solution; it's obvious! Follow a Plant Based diet and embrace the lifestyle. Your commitment will have an immediate effect on our environment.
'The world and its well-being and ultimately our very survival is in our hands'
Stephen Penberthy - Author and Independent Advocate Against Cruelty to Animals Around the World
"A Journey to a Kinder World"