Almost a week ago a media firestorm erupted around ex-cricketer Glenn McGrath. It turns out that in 2008 he had gone hunting but now in 2015 he was going to be tried by media for that “crime”. I really thought it would have died out by now with so much news out there but alas, I was wrong.
I’ve read with much fascination the comments and articles from legitimate media outlets. Most of them are horrified with Glenn’s actions. I’ve also read the social media reaction to his hunting trip and the vast majority of it has been the usual baying for his blood.
Now this is where it gets tricky and somewhat conflicting for me friends.
I am most certainly a pacifist. I do not believe in hunting. I do not believe in animal tourism. I do not believe that I have the capacity to kill anything and enjoy it. These are all things I strongly believe in – FOR MYSELF.
I also strongly believe that you dear reader, and every other person on the face of this fine planet has the right to believe whatever you want to believe. Because it would be all kinds of stupid of me to insist on my right to my own beliefs while denying that of everyone else. Am I right?
Well apparently I am not right. All I have read was how wrong and evil Glenn was because he went on a big game hunt. And how dare he kill animals and he should be ashamed, and one choice commentator on a certain social media site even went as far as to say that he should be hunted down and shot like the animals he hunted. Really? Have we all lost our minds?
Glenn McGrath went on a legal big game hunt. The key word here is LEGAL. Now some of us may not like hunting but the truth is that lots of people do enjoy it and it is a legal activity in lots of places. If you want to get a weapon and hunt an animal, kill it, have your photo taken with it and then have that said animal stuffed and mounted to hang on your wall, you can. Because it is legal.
So I got to wondering about two things.
The first is why we are so quick to turn so vicious, and sometimes freaking down-right-unbalanced-scary when we’re confronted with someone else’s choice which may not meet our standards. I can understand being disappointed in his choice, but threatening him with actual physical harm? Nope. You’ve lost me folks.
Secondly I wondered if these people would ever be bothered putting their animal activism into action? Are they financial or voluntary supporters of groups like PETA or RSPCA? Do they ensure that they only buy leather goods sourced from animals that died of natural causes? Do they know if their cosmetics were tested on animals? Did they buy their puppy from a pet shop that is supplied by puppy farmers? (I could go on and on….). I’m willing to stick my neck out and say that very few of them don’t give any of these things a second thought.
They just smelt Glenn’s blood and hunted him down.
So Glenn apologised and yet everyone’s still harping on about it. People are calling for the masses to stop donating to the McGrath Foundation. Of course! Silly me! It makes perfect sense to make all those people suffering from breast cancer endure even more hardship just because Glenn McGrath isn’t flavour of the month. How could we let an organisation with his name attached to it do good things in the community?
Keep remembering though, that the hunt was legal people. Legal.
So here’s a thought next time you start to get yourself entrenched in a keyboard battle – start it with the law makers who allow the things you hate. Crazy I know, but the only way to change things you don’t like is to rise up against it.
Until then we’ve got to let people live their own lives. And if that means taking part in a legal big game hunt then so be it. Do I like it? No. Do I want the right to choose to take part in any legal activity I chose? Yes. Then I have to extend that right to everyone else too – don’t I?