One particularly poignant article cut through the noise in the response to Melissa Bachman.
Many of us are aware of the photo of Melissa Bachman with a lion she hunted in South Africa, and the story of how it went viral. The international event even spurred a petition on change.org asking the South African government to ban Bachman from the country. While the majority of folks thought they had the culprit in their sights, many didn’t realize that what Melissa did was completely legal, and if they hoped to see any change they’d need to direct their attention elsewhere.
A man who read one particularly vicious article against Bachman couldn’t stand to see such injustice being published, and took a very well-authored stand against the distribution of misinformation. Jordan, the writer of the response, shared his letter on reddit.com and said “I am currently awaiting her response even though I doubt I will get one, but I’m hoping that I won’t be the only one who feels like “educating” this woman.” The text of his response to her article is below:
For some reason I doubt you will actually read this or even receive it, but after reading your article about Melissa Bachman I felt the need to try and contact you.
I am a certified fish & wildlife technician, currently upgrading my diploma to the technologist level, and as such I feel I have a great understanding of wildlife management techniques.
As an avid fisherman and hunter (expecting a snide remark on that point) I felt I should do some research into this whole Lion killing issue when it first came up, as I see you have. I assume you are aware that what Ms. Bachman has done is legal, and I would therefore ask that you not bombard her with your disgusting, ignorant comments and instead attack the conservation agencies involved in this fiasco if you still deem it necessary.
One of the first concepts in managing animals (and I’m sure you’ll love this one) is that males are quite simple to replace in a population, even in Felines, as I’m sure your readings of National Geographic have told you. A pack consists of one male, several females and their cubs. By observing this, it is obvious that one male Lion can breed with many females and in actuality the loss of a male does not significantly impact a strong population.
Next, the cubs are not killed by the male when another takes over the pack. If any of the existing pack are killed, it would be members of the original pack who are next in line and do not agree with the new leader, thus they fight, occasionally to the death. However during these fights, as with almost any population of animal, basic instincts for the animal kick in and tell it not to kill the attacker, more “put him in his place”. If you do not believe me on this point, feel free to research (I would suggest peer-reviewed scholarly articles instead of the first result Google tells you), members of the Deer family are an excellent example on this.
Another part of your article that intrigued me was this statement: “Not for food, or even for their pelt. Just for pleasure.” Now I’m sure if you have researched this event as much as I have, since you are a famous reporter and take the utmost importance in making sure what you write about is credible, you would have found quite easily that Ms. Bachman donated all of the meat to local food banks. Now I have also read that Lion meat would never be consumed due to being of poor quality, that should still not be held against her doing the right thing.
Legal hunters all over the world have given more money towards wildlife conservation than all the other pro-animal organizations in the world, hard to believe us “murderers” want to save animals. During this expedition, Ms. Bachman spent thousands of dollars that benefit the economy and conservation, certainly more than you and I have done defending each side we have taken on this. I also want to say that the organizations involved claim the money is spent largely in anti-poaching measures, such as building fences and hiring for enforcement assistance.
One of the reasons killing this Lion was legal was actually to increase genetic diversity by reducing inbreeding. One of the scariest examples of this would be the entire population of Cheetahs left in the world. Every Cheetah left is almost genetically identical to each other, it has come to the point that even if population numbers go up, it will all be in vain as soon as some sort of disease begins in infect them. Even though this species is alive, they are doomed, something we all do not want to happen to any animal in the world.
You have also suggested that the way this Lion was killed was inhumane. To this, I ask you to simply read about how chickens, cows, and pigs are processed before they end up on our dinner plates. I could frankly care less if you are a vegetarian, vegan, supporter of organizations such as PETA, or you are simply concerned about ethical food processing. If you want to write the next biggest news story, do some simple digging into that, as easy as that information is to access, I’m sure you’ll turn a lot of heads.
These are but a few simple points I have gone over. I tried to keep my message in a very civil manner, as I will certainly be sharing it, except where I have responded to your accusations and name calling against Ms. Bachman, which I feel are completely unjust and childish.
I look forward to seeing your response to this message and I hope that any message will be well thought out and prepared as we both obviously care greatly about this matter. If it is okay to you, I would also like to share your response to people who would be willing to read it. Feel free to respond at your convenience, though I feel it would benefit both of us if it were sooner rather than later, just so the topic is still relevant.