Look, having grown up in the southern United States, I'm all for hunting. Especially if it's for food.
For me, hunting for food is almost always acceptable. This happens in the wild very often, and I firmly believe that if you want to shoot a deer and process the meat to feed yourself or your family, you should be able to go right ahead. Where I think it isn't okay to shoot or otherwise kill an animal for food is if the animal is endangered, regardless of whether you were aware of the animal's endangered status. If you hunt, you should have the common sense to do your research and determine whether or not the animal is endangered.
Now I say this in response to all the outrage at this Kendall Jones chick, a Texas Tech cheerleader who has come under the gun all over the place because she posted multiple pictures of herself posed with rare animals she killed for sport. I'm not passionately on one side or the other. I want to take more of a common sense approach to this.
First of all, Kendall Jones is from Texas. Being a student at Texas Tech, she probably lives in Lubbock, which is in the Texas panhandle. Much like California virtually always votes Democratic in presidential elections, Texas is overwhelmingly Republican. This is a state where you find a lot of people who like hunting, and (naturally) they like their guns. Many are old school, firmly believing marriage to be between only a man and a woman. Also, most of them like their big ass pickup trucks. I can say that because I live in an Oklahoma town that isn't far from Texas. I could drive a little over an hour and be in Texas.
One argument I see from a lot of the hunters who are backing her up is this: "Hunters are the biggest conservationists out there!" I think this is flat-out ridiculous, especially if you hunt purely for sport. Killing an animal just to have it stuffed is extremely wasteful in my opinion. To say that hunters are helping the farmers who are helping endangered animals recover by helping to control the population is also ridiculous. To kill is to reduce the population of a species, which is counterproductive to the cause. If you want to hunt something for sport, don't hunt something that is extremely rare, regardless of how much money you have.
I believe that if you want to hunt for sport, it's okay. I think it's wasteful, but it's okay under certain circumstances. What disgusts me about this Kendall Jones chick is that she didn't just kill a lion and a hippo and call it quits because she was concerned she might be taking too much. She's got a leopard, a zebra, a lion, an elephant, an antelope, a wildebeest, a hippo, a rhino, and probably a few others I haven't seen yet. That's crazy. There's no way she's going to use those animals. She'll probably stuff them or otherwise waste the animals. And it wasn't just a couple. She killed a multitude of animals. It did kinda piss me off to see her with the dead rhino. Rhinos aren't common. They need to make a comeback.
The difference between hunting for sport and hunting for food/survival is pictures on Facebook.
At the same time, I don't believe that all this outrage is the correct way to respond. You must really consider that this isn't the first time someone has paid a lot of money to go hunt rare and endangered animals in Africa. A lot of people go and have gone over there to kill a lot of animals. I don't want to defend her by any means. I don't think what she did was right. Just because you can doesn't necessarily mean you should. But everybody in the world freaking out, making death threats, and wishing harm on someone is not the correct way to go about it. And petitioning the White House to do something in this case isn't correct either. A petition should be made for a generality, not a specific case. "Make same-sex marriage legal nationally and make it unlawful for states to make laws that contradict this" is the right way to petition the White House. "Keep Kendall Jones out of Africa" is not. The long arm of the law does not extend past American soil. There may be extradition treaties and whatnot, but the US government couldn't convict her in a court of law of a crime which was committed outside the US. Even if the petition got 200 million signatures, they couldn't do anything. Though killing some of those animals might be punishable by US law, she wasn't under US law while in South Africa.
The correct response to this is to make a movement to make it illegal to kill these animals by other countries' laws. The US government can't impose laws on a person when they are not in the US, regardless of citizenship. However, if South Africa were to make it illegal to kill, injure, or otherwise harm endangered animals like rhinos, that would be a big step forward and it would allow these endangered species to better recover since it would be illegal there for someone to hunt them.
My common sense approach on this is that hunting for food is hunting for necessity. People need to eat. I believe that you should be able to take from the wild if it is for necessity so long as what you take from it is quickly replaced or not otherwise in immediate danger of extinction. Hunting for sport is wasteful unless the animal being hunted is a danger to people or a pest (such as feral hogs--this is a problem down here, and many local governments have asked local hunters for assistance in population control) or if the hunter takes very little. While I don't agree with hunting for sport, I understand people enjoy hunting as a sport in itself. I believe that those who hunt for sport should only do so in moderation. Killing only a few animals is okay, especially if they are overwhelmingly common (such as wild rabbits). I don't think it is ever okay to kill a rare animal, regardless of how much money you have. If you really care about conservation, don't kill the animals. Just donate the money or go over there and go see the animals. There are ways to promote wildlife conservation that don't involve killing the animals.
As for you people who are disgusted with it, death threats aren't the way to go. Seriously. Think about how you would feel if the whole internet suddenly started threatening you with your death or if people described in gruesome detail how they want you to die. There are more effective ways to express your distaste for something.