Cecil the Lion The Hill RomneySometimes a story comes along that encapsulates everything that is wrong with the U.S. media landscape. Consider if you will the case of Kevin Cirilli, who wrote the following for The Hill on Wednesday: “Cecil the lion’s killer donated to Romney.”

Yes, that is a real headline and time was used during a workday to write the accompanying story.

The Hill “reported”:

The Minnesota dentist who authorities say killed a beloved Zimbabwe lion named Cecil donated to Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign.

Federal Elections Commission (FEC) forms show Walter James Palmer, a dentist in Eden Prairie, Minn., donated $5,000 to the Romney campaign in 2012.

Palmer also donated $250 to former Rep. Jim Ramstad (R-Minn.) in 1990 and $250 to Ramstad in 1992.

Local news reports have identified Palmer as a dentist in the Minneapolis outer suburb of Bloomington who resides in Eden Prairie, another Twin Cities suburb.

Palmer is at the center of an international storm after the death of Cecil the lion, who was well-known at Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe.

The Minnesota dentist reportedly shot the lion with a bow and arrow, but that failed to kill it. The lion was then tracked and shot again with a gun, before it was skinned and beheaded.

What you just read is not a story from The Onion. Mr. Cirilli’s piece was actually approved by an editor.

Why is it of any interest to the public that Mr. Palmer donated money to a failed Republican presidential candidate in 2012? Has The Hill gone through the list of convicted murderers in Chicago since 2012 and ran headlines like “Pro-Obama voting strongly linked to Windy City homicides”? Has The Hill investigated the presidential donations of the Planned Parenthood employees caught on video negotiating how to get the best price for fully functional aborted baby livers and kidneys?

Let me save you the trouble of looking — the answer is “No.”

There is something incredibly nauseating about writers who will jump at any opportunity to politically splinter the American public. There is something disgusting about a man whose first instinct when a story grabs national headlines is to figure out how to demonize the Mormon guy who organizes charity events for third-world countries.

In short, Mitt Romney helps humans in Africa get access to high tech medical equipment, while reporters for The Hill concoct ways to tie him to a random lion’s unfortunate death.

While it is incredibly sad that an American man would spend over $50,000 to kill a lion — just to say he did it — the kind of “reporter” who comes up with stories like “Cecil the lion’s killer donated to Romney” is arguably just as pathetic.

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About the Author Douglas Ernst

I'm a former Army guy who believes success comes through hard work, honesty, optimism, and perseverance. I believe seeing yourself as a victim creates a self-fulfilling prophecy. I believe in God. I'm a USC Trojan with an MA in Political Science from American University.

13 comments

  1. “There is something incredibly nauseating about writers who will jump at any opportunity to politically splinter the American public…”

    Well said. It reminds me of social engineering,of bread and circuses, of the way fascists like to separate,divide, and control people. That probably sounds slightly hysterical, but what else is the point of all this stupidity?

    This lion story just gets stranger by the minute and people are milking it for everything it is worth. I’ve heard calls for gun control, global warming, racism, women’s health care, capitalism, all somehow relating to this lion story. I don’t like sport hunting, but I did learn that the 50 or a hundred grand that people often pay is used to fund sanctuaries and habitats for these animals. So that adds another layer of complexity to the morality of this issue.

    1. The “Cecil the Lion” fixation is weird to me because it took place during the Planned Parenthood baby liver/kidney-harvesting story. In one instance you have humans sipping wine while discussing how much it costs to get an intact baby organs, and in the other you had…a lion that died.

      Again, I think a guy has problems if he’s paying $50,000 to kill rare or exotic animals. I don’t think there is anything honorable about using a high-powered rifle with a scope on it or a modern bow-and-arrow to kill a lion. With that said, it seems people pick the easy things to get worked up over (e.g., a dead lion), while doing their best to ignore real evil.

    2. Yet another sign of modern times has been the way we have been moving towards valuing animals more than we value humans. That’s a cultural phenomenon that I’ve been watching for some 30 years now and the implications are really quite scary.

      Of course we all love animals, but morally this path leads us to right where we are today, wanting to put some guy on trial for “murdering” a lion while seeing nothing really wrong with harvesting and selling the organs from our own babies.

      So, my solution at the moment is to self identify as a lion and see if I maybe I can get a Courage Award from ESPN or something 😉

    3. I’m so glad that I have this blog, because my Facebook feed has a few posts that are along the lines of Cecil-worship. It’s hard to talk about this stuff without coming across as the guy who hates animals, nature, etc. (I don’t). Heck, my wife sometimes gets annoyed at me when I take spiders outside instead of killing them. 🙂

      I love nature, but you’ll never see me crying in the woods like a bunch of bongo-playing Earth First members.

    4. Eh, it’s his money. I learned a lot time ago it’s best to not bother worrying about other people’s souls since mine has enough worry of its own.

      (though part of me keeps wondering if another shoe will drop, like Cecil was old & dying anyway or had turned rogue, whatever)

      Anyway, here you go, Doug.

    5. I guess it depends on what your definition of “worry” means. Doesn’t one important aspect of taking care of your own soul consist of trying to help save souls who are lost?

      There is a difference between nosing into another man’s business because you’d rather not focus on your own faults, and calling out sinful, strange or errant behavior when it’s appropriate or germane to a discussion at hand.

    6. They’ll always go with the comfort food option it seems, because it’s a simpler thing, you have less of a sketchy patch of morality where Cecil is concerned, it’s easy to take a side with that, they’re not going to be personally affected by a wild animal. The babies thing? Yes, it’s horrifying, and it raises questions in one’s character, some might say “what if it comes my turn and my baby needs x amount of organs in order to live? Would I pay top dollar at the expense of one other for my son or daughter to lead their own life?”, it disturbs anyone that would follow the story on that.

  2. As I said at Hube’s place, this “outrage” over a stupid lion is beyond ridiculous. They freak out about this and threaten to destroy this guy’s livelihood and send him threats on his Yelp page, but ignore and dismiss Planned Parenthood’s harvesting of organs from unborn babies. When it comes to Planned Parenthood, they adopt a “nothing to see here, move along attitude.”

    Not too long ago, there was a similar SJW freakout, spearheaded by so-called “comedian” Ricky Gervais, over a young woman from Texas who went big game hunting in Africa and he basically encouraged his Twitter Followers to harass her. Many of them sent her death threats. It was pathetic and disgusting. If I were her, I’d bring legal action against Gervais for destroying my life.

    This is why I hate social media and have scaled back in recent years. I haven’t been on Facebook in two years and I’m glad I made that choice. I despise the online SJW lynch mobs that freak out about things that don’t matter and destroy the livelihoods of people who do/say something they disagree with. It’s disgusting.

  3. Thank you! It is ridiculous, but predictable, that the liberal media would link the lion poacher Walter Palmer to Romney. So typical that they have nothing factual to make Republicans look bad, so they have to make up lies like that Palmer gave $5000 to Romney!

    1. Thanks for taking the time to read and comment, Joe. I appreciate it.

      I have no reason to doubt the veracity of The Hill’s reporting on Mr. Palmer’s political donations, but I do question the judgment of a writer who thinks it was in any way relevant to the “Ceil the lion” story.

  4. The MSM don’t want to talk about the Planned Parenthood scandal, so they crank up the lion poaching story and use it as a decoy.

    Just as a traffic jam in New Jersey got more coverage than Benghazi.

    When Martha Stewart was convicted of insider trading, did the headlines play up that she was a Clinton supporter?

    And it would be interesting to see some coverage of Hillary’s campaign contributors.

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