Killing Cecile, But Not Cecil

I carried a gun in New York City for more than a decade. In that time (and even to this day), I would have killed anyone who was a threat to my life or the life of someone I loved, or even an innocent bystander. I would have done so, not without remorse, for it would surely have haunted me for the rest of my days.

Yet, when asked to go hunting on many occasions by many friends, I would always decline. 

This was never understood by those who had done the inviting. They would posit that if I was willing to kill a human being, why would I refuse to kill an animal? I would simply answer that I refused to kill anything that didn’t deserve it. They would reply, “But, you eat meat?” Yes, that’s true, but I don’t have to kill the steer myself. 

Is that hypocrisy? I don’t know. 

Killing a living thing takes something away from you that can never be regained. 

I won’t kill an animal, unless they are a mortal threat to me and mine, because I have lost so much of me in the process of simply living my life, that I don’t believe I can afford what it would cost my soul. 

And, I think, at least for me, it is wrong.

Would I ruin a dentist’s life over it?  Certainly not, despite never really understanding the attraction of hunting. 

It seems to me that a Cecile, who has no problem killing tiny human beings and selling their parts for profit is a greater danger than a Cecil who really only did what lions do.

I carried a gun in New York City for more than a decade. In that time (and even to this day), I would have killed anyone who was a threat to my life or the life of someone I loved, or even an innocent bystander. I would have done so, not without remorse, for it would surely have haunted me for the rest of my days.

Yet, when asked to go hunting on many occasions by many friends, I would always decline. 

This was never understood by those who had done the inviting. They would posit that if I was willing to kill a human being, why would I refuse to kill an animal? I would simply answer that I refused to kill anything that didn’t deserve it. They would reply, “But, you eat meat?” Yes, that’s true, but I don’t have to kill the steer myself. 

Is that hypocrisy? I don’t know. 

Killing a living thing takes something away from you that can never be regained. 

I won’t kill an animal, unless they are a mortal threat to me and mine, because I have lost so much of me in the process of simply living my life, that I don’t believe I can afford what it would cost my soul. 

And, I think, at least for me, it is wrong.

Would I ruin a dentist’s life over it?  Certainly not, despite never really understanding the attraction of hunting. 

It seems to me that a Cecile, who has no problem killing tiny human beings and selling their parts for profit is a greater danger than a Cecil who really only did what lions do.