Friday, July 31, 2015
The Lion Sleeps Tonight
Planned Parenthood has been caught selling baby parts and the headlines and talk show hosts are screaming with outrage. But not about that. About a guy who shot a lion in Zimbabwe.
It turns out that the guy who shot the lion is a dentist. His office is just down the road from my home in the otherwise uneventful suburb of Bloomington, Minnesota. He is now a marked man, a wanted criminal. His business is in shambles, his patients all scattered to other dental clinics across the Twin Cities.
Okay, it’s true that we all like to see dentists suffer, and that is perhaps the latent motive behind the worldwide blitz against this tooth-puller who paid $50,000 to some African guides for the privilege of bow-hunting the king of beasts. Open wider, please. This is going to hurt.
But then there’s that whole thing about hunting. Lots of people don’t like hunting for various reasons. I admit I don’t like hunting. But it’s not a matter of principle, it’s a matter of pleasure. Or lack of it. I tend to agree with Dr. Samuel Johnson who said that God gave us so few pleasures, it’s strange that hunting should be one of them. However, I understand that going back across the centuries, there is a tradition well-honored that involves the thrill of the chase, the bagging of the prize, the meat, the mount, the glassy-eyed memory of man versus beast. One of our most popular presidents, Theodore Roosevelt, posed proudly with the big game he shot in Africa. It contributed to his fearless and rugged image, a man with a zest for adventure. Nobody complained.
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Dale Ahlquist is the president and co-founder of the American Chesterton Society. He is the creator and host of the Eternal Word Television Network series, "G.K. Chesterton: The Apostle of Common Sense." Dale is the author ofG.K. Chesterton: Apostle of Common Sense and the recently published The Complete Thinker. He is also the publisher of Gilbert Magazine, and associate editor of the Collected Works of G.K. Chesterton (Ignatius). He lives near Minneapolis with his wife and six children.