Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Crocodile Hunter II: The Revenge

Conservationists around Australia are worried that the recent death of Steve Irwin, best known as the Crocodile Hunter, has provoked what is quickly being termed "stingray rage". At least ten of the animals have been found killed, and a couple had their tails removed, around Queensland, where Irwin had his zoo.

This flies in the face of everything that any self-professed conservationist, which Irwin was, stands for. After all, even though the man tended to make a career out of provoking normally docile creatures into states of agitation for television, he still actually did a lot to help bring awareness and respect to these creatures globally. The mere notion that people are retaliating against stingrays for what was, in all honesty, a complete fluke is sickening.

Of course, there is also a game being published on a website, intended to be seen as a memorial to the Crocodile Hunter, called Terri Irwin's Revenge. Within the game, players are challenged to attack and kill as many stingrays as possible before getting killed themselves to achieve a high score. This is akin to the notion of creating a game where Muslims are slaughtered wholesale in attempts to stave off further death and destruction. Sadly, that second game is already known as the Left Behind game.

Honestly, the fact that normally rational people, even descendants from prisoners, could possibly believe that retaliating against stingrays for the death of Steve Irwin is disturbing, to say the least. It's not like the stingray was swimming around, sharing some freaky mindspeak with its brethren before deciding to jab a barb into Irwin's heart. It was a fluke accident, and should be treated that way. Destroying large numbers of these creatures out of a misguided sense of vengeance is much like running out into a field and chopping down stalks of corn because a relative had an allergic reaction to maize.

The only comfort behind this is that it's nice to know that Americans aren't alone in perpetrating misguided revenge schemes.

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