In recent weeks there’s been a lot of media attention focused on hunting #Animals from fox hunting to the murder of Cecil the lion. Now it seems that some people believe it’s hypocritical to speak out against it. Can you really only speak out against this mistreatment of animals if you live a vegan lifestyle or do we all have a right to be outraged?

Firstly I don't believe it is hypocrite. Even those people who do eat meat have the right to be upset at animals being hunted. I think we need to accept that people choose either to eat meat or not to eat it. There’s a purpose to it, at least. The animal is eaten and not used as a trophy or some unexplained feeling of power at having been responsible for the animal’s death. Many people barely even give the animal they’re eating a second thought.

I’m not suggesting that makes it any better for the animal who has died for your dinner, but of course it’s different to chasing a lion (or any other animal) with a weapon which doesn’t require close contact. I believe that the majority of meat eaters would quickly turn vegetarian if they had to kill their own chickens, cows, pigs etc. They gain no pleasure from the actual death of the animal beyond the consumption of it.

Now someone who hunts an animal, not for food, but for pleasure does so to feel powerful, and if they were told they had to kill their own food that would probably just excite them further. They take pleasure in having tusks and lion heads lying around their home and showing their guests while telling their supposedly courageous tales of the time they killed an elephant or a lion (from far away with a gun). To be honest the story would be more impressive if they had actually fought off the lion bare handed, but hunters are too cowardly to attempt that.

You don’t see meat-eaters leaving animal bones or carcasses around their home, then proudly explaining how they ate a pig last Sunday. So it is different. Both cases still result in dead animals but hunters are definitely more sadistic about it.