I don’t hunt, however I see nothing wrong in hunting, provided it’s legal, safe and doesn’t target animals under threat. I’ve eaten duck and deer meat given to me by friends who do hunt. So I can’t quite understand the fuss surrounding “revelations” that princes Harry and William went on a hunting trip to Spain shortly before they joined their father, Prince Charles, in making a plea to stop the trade in endangered wildlife. “Tonight we are here with a single, shared purpose—to use our collective influence to put a stop to the illegal killing and trafficking of some of our world’s most iconic and endangered species,” William said.
Reports say they were shooting two animals that have become pests—deer and wild boar—throughout large swathes of the West. Everything was legal and above board. Yet most reports don’t make that distinction until around paragraph 15 or 25. Just check out the beginning of the Mirror’s story, which helpfully included a decade-old picture of Harry posing beside a dead water buffalo he killed in Argentina: “Prince Harry’s pledge to protect wildlife has been dealt a blow over this picture of the royal crouching over the body of water buffalo he shot dead on a hunting trip.”
When pictures of King Juan Carlos of Spain posing in front of an elephant he’d killed were made public, the furor was immediate, intense and justified. He was stripped of his honorary position as head of Spain’s World Wildlife Fund. However, there is a big difference between legally hunting animals that aren’t endangered and gunning down those creatures threatened with extinction. But that got lost in the the Harry-William shooting furor. And that’s a pity.