I am shocked and heartbroken that within my circle of people and even in my beloved New York Times that it has become a thought in any mind to compare the value of a human life and an animal life. I literally didn’t even think such a thing to compare the two, as if there were a problem to be sad about both. Why is that a problem? Why do some people groups think that to think of some things you shouldn’t think of others? I have cried for people lost this past six weeks more than I ever have in my life, and I am also so hurt to hear of the African lion killed this week, when there are fewer and fewer all the time (which affects the food chain, which affects the delicate balance of life God created for all of us, which affects my life and your life and our children’s lives…it’s true. Environmental science. Study up). If you know me, you know it doesn’t begin or end at Cecil the Lion. I am horrified every time I drive down a road I haven’t in a few weeks to see another forest leveled, a habitat for many and a great resource of air quality for us. I cringe to know that today’s children are being medicated and sedated with screens instead of working hard on the land and spending peace-producing hours outdoors.
I care deeply about people, especially children. I have spent time with children living in the throes of poverty and time with children living in foster care. I know the horrors and the hardship. I also feel very strongly about our creation, which we are destroying more and more quickly with our growing population of 7 billion, while lions have declined by up to 90% just since 1975 and are now at a mere 30,000, if that. It makes my heart so sad to know that there are people out there who are angered because we care also about these 30,000, put here before us on Earth, majestic, wild, free, untainted by our human ways, a minority to be protected. We are busy getting angry, living our lives, removing THE creation, replacing it with concrete and castles in the sky and photo after photo of our tiny little selves and chemicals and self-righteousness. We are our own downfall, since the garden of Eden. Why are we getting angry at the animals? What is the threat? I see the threat clearly and it isn’t the animals.
30,000 lions vs. 7 billion humans. I cannot believe this is even a comparison to be considered. Are we so detached from our natural world that it enrages us that the death of a lion is sad to some others of us? Are we so detached from our God-given natural world that we freak out and post a photo to facebook every time we see a snake? Are we really so detached that these things cause our hearts to panic? Each of us is but a breath on earth, the world keeps spinning long after we are gone. Hopefully.
For my children’s sake and future, at least, I hope some of us DO stand up for Cecil the Lion, and for the health of our planet.