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Five-Year Old Shoots 35-Year Old in Head

Check this out . . .

It saddens me, and I find it extremely disturbing, that a five-year old child is giddy, and his parents (and the journalists on this program) are so pleased that he killed a 35-40-year old alligator. 

Let's deconstruct a few details:

  • The young boy shot the alligator, who had been trapped, in the head and killed him. Where's the hunting? Is this something to be proud of for a person of any age? Basically the animal was five feet in front of him, and the boy shot him in the head, killing him. Just like his daddy taught him.
  • Now, five-year olds on television, or even not on television, can be excused for being giddy about anything. And I don't like ridiculing children because the behaviors they exhibit come from somewhere. And in this case we are told exactly where they come from, therefore we don't need to make any assumptions: The child's father taught him how to use a gun (at age 4) and takes him hunting.
  • The father tells us that the alligator was born and raised on the property. The father is telling us: We went into the alligator's home (it was the alligator's home first), where he has lived for decades, and trapped and killed him because he is (was) an alligator. Again, something to be proud of?
  • All of the smiles and glee coming from the adults, who are supposed to teach children respect for life, is creepy. The father even says that he has taught his children respect for . . . firearms. Not life, but firearms.
  • Imagine, for one moment, that the alligator was a Golden Retriever, living his life, minding his own business, wandering the area he calls home, and snap (or however it happened), suddenly he is trapped. And soon along comes a child who shoots him in the head, killing him. Would that earn him a spot on television?

Here's what this young boy has learned:

  • Alligators do not deserve to live.
  • Killing them is fun.
  • Trapping them, with an intent to kill them, is fair. And fun.
  • Going to an area where an animal has lived for decades, and hasn't bothered anyone, and killing him is okay. And fun.
  • Presumably, there is something horrible about alligators that sets them apart from dogs, and killing them is providing a public service of sorts (whereas I promise you killing a Golden Retriever would not be viewed as such, although killing a pit bull-type dog might, revealing yet another layer of discrimination).
  • Killing animals might land you on national television, which is fun.
  • Killing animals is an act that will make your parents glow with pride.

To be fair (!), each reference to "animals" above should really say "certain animals:" the ones we have chosen to demonize.

In America, we demonize not only certain animals, but certain people. And one of the groups demonized by the mainstream is people who think it's unethical to demonize, disrespect and slaughter animals.

What's wrong with this picture?

4 Comments Post a comment
  1. John #

    Pretty sick. Could only watch the first minute or so of the Fox News video as the anger inside got to be too much seeing the smiles on all their faces.

    October 5, 2009
  2. Olivia #

    I managed to watch the whole thing, because I wanted to see what his mom Toni, who wore an alligator-like dress for the big occasion, would say. She assured us that her son was safe because three men she trusted were with him, protecting him just in case the alligator lunged.

    What saddens me more than anything — even more than the fact that the Fox anchors acted like the boy is the next best thing to sliced bread — is that our generation is brainwashing the youngest generations, thus perpetuating this heartless, mindless culture.

    What heartens me, though, is that unintelligent beliefs are powerless in the long run, and they fall flat on their face — in the face of powerful good — in time.

    October 6, 2009
  3. Mary,
    I saw this on last week and it frustrated me as do all of the stories about teaching children to kill animals and there are plenty of stories. It's a horrible tradition to encourage children to take the life away of another. It's also extremely abusive to not just the children being brainwashed here into a life of violence but also to the rest of the world that must live around these individuals when they grow older and continue with their killing sprees.
    If you teach a child to not walk in traffic or not play so close to the edge of a cliff they will learn from the adults around them right and wrong. Their brains are like sponges soaking up info. The same happens when you teach kids to be cruel to animals. They grow up continuing that celebration of cruelty for the rest of their lives and pass that sentiment on to more children.
    Yes, I believe the real irony here is the same type of insanity that exists when a human explains why they are against sport, trophy or any kind of hunting for pleasure, recreation or even the lame excuse that the killers are going to freeze the meat or donate it to homeless people. What happens is that the person coming out against violence and against killing animals is seen as crazy, annoying or not understanding the blood letting way of life and are most often also branded as evil for being kind to others.
    It is also well documented and there are many examples of when whites would try and stop lynching's for instance in the south or come out against lynching's as unethical and unjust they were often beaten and or arrested and seen as evil because they were interfering with a grand tradition. 
    Another irony is that most of the stories I've read about children being applauded for cruelty to animals also take place in the south. FYI!
    Thanks for this post.


    October 6, 2009
  4. I used to wonder really, at age 5 did a child understand "death"? I know the boy "hero" said he knew to shoot the gator "between the eyes; in the brain". Guess my question is answered.

    And I suppose the boy is totally indoctrinated to his "priviledge" of doing so – being that the father was joyful about the bonus permit to "take" an extra alligator. And the boy's desire for an even bigger one "next time".

    The alligator head on ice speaks volumes of our savagery, and how far we still need to go as a "civilized" species.

    But I don't think it's a regional challenge regarding "kids and cruelty". There's children participating in pigeon shoots in Penn., teen rodeos in the west, youngsters hunting "game" nationally, and let's not forget "4H".

    Still, these are our traditions, which are all seen as "healthy" and "a wholesome opportunity for children". Bet the majority of these parents would cringe at the idea of juvenile matadors or "under age" slaughterhouse workers. Yet sadly, they exist too. It's not north/south, east/west, or one country's exclusive dissonance. Pity us, it's all of man"kind".

    October 7, 2009

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