Terry Thompson, an exotic animal preserve owner, killed himself on 18th October. Before he killed himself, he released nearly all of the animals in his “collection”, allowing them to roam Zainesville, OH. Most of the animals were shot and killed by local police, because there was no time to acquire tranquiliser weapons, and the danger of wild, carnivorous animals in a residential area was imminent.
There is nothing good about this story. Regardless of the risk to community, I highly doubt anyone wants to see so many endangered animals slaughtered. No one wants a bunch of animal attacks either. This story brings up a lot of points though:
- Why the hell are private citizens even allowed to have endangered, exotic pets? I don’t care how much you LOVE animals, they belong in the wild. The domestication of dogs and cats took possibly tens of thousands of years. We should stick to what we know. We are in a more enlightened time, where we can actually see and comprehend the effect we have on an ecosystem when we extract an animal and put it in a cage for display or as a “pet”. It’s not good for the animal, and even worse for the habitat from whence it came. Think “Butterfly Effect”, but with elephants and Bengal tigers.
- Terry Thompson had a history of animal abuse cases and a gun charge. He actually had his licence to exhibit exotic animals revoked, but he still had them. Why the hell did this dude have any animals? I don’t think he’d be fit to own a goldfish!
- This whole story is proof that a government without regulations on its citizens will lead to chaos…as if the Industrial Revolution didn’t do that already. Ohio’s animal ownership laws are the most lenient in the country, and the few regulations they had were not enforced. That’s why things came to this. These animals could have been put in a proper preserve, or re-introduced back into the wild if they were fit to do so. I would love to like Ron Paul, but his idea that the government should not have any involvement in individuals’ lives is too narrow. I am all for everyone doing everything they want to do so long as they don’t keep another person from doing the same, but there NEEDS to be some governing, because PEOPLE ARE SELFISH AND STUPID! Regulations don’t kill jobs and keep you from doing what you want to do. They are supposed to keep you from doing dumb s*** like OWNING A F***ING MAN-EATING CAT! Honestly, if the guy died at the hand (paw?) of one of his own “pet” lions, then I wouldn’t feel too sorry for him. The fact is, though, the animals were a danger to the surrounding community, even before he let them loose. Here’s a good test: is your cat bigger than a bread box? Yes? Then it’s too f***ing big. Send it to a wildlife preserve and get yourself a nice calico from the local shelter.
Bottom line: lift certain regulations, or just not enforce them to appease a certain voting demographic, and you do more damage to the rest of the world than if you just risked not appeasing a few narrow-minded people. They’re not narrow-minded because they’re a**holes (though I’m sure some of them are); they’re narrow-minded because they’re not seeing the effect one law would have on the rest of their community. We are individuals, but the way the world is now, humans are social animals, and we have a responsibility to do right by our fellow humans. So no more f***ing pet bears and tigers, PLEASE.