Re­pulsed by moose pho­tos

The Compass - - OPINION - — Bill West­cott writes from Clarke’s Beach

There is noth­ing more re­pul­sive to me than a photo of an ema­ci­ated an­i­mal shown in print, online or on tele­vi­sion.

Most hu­man be­ings re­act strongly to the in­hu­mane treat­ment of warm­blooded crea­tures. Just ask the S.P.C.A. or the pro­fes­sion­als who work in Ve­teri­nary clin­ics how cru­elty to an­i­mals re­pulse nine out of 10 peo­ple.

Trooper the cat

Some time ago, Trooper the cat got hit by a ve­hi­cle and sev­eral hours later ended up frozen to a drive­way in Stephenville Cross­ing. A good Sa­mar­i­tan found the poor thing and man­aged to un­thaw it and sub­se­quently was able to find sup­port ( fi­nan­cial) in or­der to save its life.

The story of Trooper reached world­wide on so­cial me­dia and do­na­tions came in from as far away as Aus­tralia, Scot­land and the U.S.

Do­na­tions were made from home and abroad to pay the bill af­ter Trooper was sent to a ve­teri­nary hos­pi­tal in Prince Ed­ward Is­land.

De­spite am­pu­ta­tion, Trooper was saved. The world­wide in­ter­est in his re­cov­ery is noth­ing else but as­tound­ing.

No pho­tos are re­leased

It is in­ter­est­ing to note that at no time were pho­tos of Trooper frozen to the pave­ment or in hor­rific pain shown. If they were, peo­ple would be re­pulsed, I am cer­tain.

It is worth not­ing, too, that no pho­tos of hor­rific scenes of car­nage (hu­man or oth­er­wise) ev­i­dent as a re­sult of moose/ve­hic­u­lar col­li­sions are re­leased to the pub­lic. And, rightly so.

Dis­cre­tion re­quired

I wish out­door colum­nist Paul Smith, au­thor of “Woods and Waters” in the weekend edi­tion of The Tele­gram, would show sim­i­lar dis­cre­tion. Do it for the ma­jor­ity of read­ers who, like those men­tioned above, are re­pulsed by scenes of an­i­mal bru­tal­ity like you show now and then.

Smith’s re­cent weekend story about a moose hunt­ing trip, head­lined “Of moose and men” ( fea­tured in the Satur­day, Oct. 5 print edi­tion of The Tele­gram) ran a rather large color photo of a beau­ti­ful big bull moose ly­ing dead on the ground while its throat is be­ing slashed as another hunter looks on.

To add a lit­tle more drama to the hor­rific scene, Smith over­laid a small photo of the car­cass, the rack, and the hind quar­ter sawed up and the dead an­i­mal’s legs dan­gling from a cart be­hind his all-ter­rain ve­hi­cle.

Not against hunt­ing

I am not against hunt­ing and I know the moose have to be culled. And, I know the dan­gers they bring to mo­torists, in­clud­ing my­self.

What I do know as well is that pho­tos like the one fea­tured Oct.5 are gross and I like many other an­i­mal lovers, am re­pulsed by them.

So Mr. Smith, how about a bit of sen­si­tiv­ity from you and your part­ners? Th­ese pho­tos are far from “in good taste,” in my opin­ion. Send them to your favourite Sports­man mag­a­zine or bet­ter still, burn or dump them. They don’t be­long in “the peo­ple’s pa­per.”

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