05 july 2014
Many in the online community are once again infuriated as a Texan cheerleader posted photos of herself posing and smiling alongside several rare African species of game.
The 19-year-old, Kendall Jones, has posted photos of herself with dead animals such as lions, elephants and hippos among others, which she has killed during her trip in Africa. She didn’t think that her posts would backfire, and despite her claiming that her kills were all fair chase, online spectators thought otherwise. In her defense, Jones invoked the memory of 26th US President Teddy Roosevelt who loved the safari. She also claimed that killing rare animals is part of a conservation effort to actually save them, saying that the effort would assure that they would never go extinct.
Of course animal rights activists and regular social media users are not amused. In fact, they are enraged, and the issue has spread like wildfire online with tens of thousands of animal lovers signing a petition to urge Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to take the photos down. A South African man started another petition where more than 40,000 people signed to ask the South African government to deny Jones entry to the country and completely ban her from wherever her safaris took place. However, Jones has her own supporters who put up a Facebook page that has collected around 89,000 likes as of Tuesday. Her family has also been supportive of Kendall’s actions, saying that her hunts were completely legal with tags and licenses approved by the wildlife department and the country’s officials.