Target: U.S. Congress
Goal: To ban the importation and hunting of lions by listing them as an endangered species.
Thousands of lions are imported from Africa as hunting “trophies” to the U.S. every year; the lion population has decreased by about 48% over the past 22 years. Lions are also farmed for hunting purposes then hunted within enclosures; this is absurd considering the fact that their lives are being taken for mere profit and a feat for hunters to boast over. These majestic animals are in rapid decline, this simply cannot continue, to lose the very heart of the jungle would be a tragedy beyond comprehension.
Lions have been a part of our history since the stone age, they have been used in artwork as a symbol of strength and courage. Lions have been represented in national flags, coats of arms and emblems. The lion as the “king of the jungle” goes back to a Christian book called the Phisiologus, written in the second century A.D. Many cultures use the symbol of lioness as protection for their culture; they are magnificently regal creatures that deserve to be protected by us.
Tragically, lions are not on the list of endangered species and the U.S. is responsible for the bulk of the lions imported from Africa for commercial purposes and as “trophies.” The number of lions imported has only increased in recent years. Many lions could be protected if they were listed as endangered species because the importation of lions to the U.S. would be prohibited. This could also heighten worldwide awareness of the plight of the lion. The movie “White Lion” intimately portrays this dismal situation and in an article the producer speaks of their gentle nature; often he said “they would greet him with rumbling purrs.” For these noble animals to become a part of our past is to damage the very heart of our humanity.