Friday, June 5, 2015

Cruelty within the (non-human) Animal Kingdom?

In section yesterday, I mentioned a clip that I saw on youtube a few years back in which a big cat was teaching its cubs to hunt by essentially maiming an antelope or gazelle, and allowing the cubs to (attempt) to kill it. The gazelle was clearly in pain, and it was really rough for me to watch, even though I continued watching because it was so fascinating.

When the video finished, I scrolled down to see what people were commenting, wondering if people were feeling the same "I'm so fascinated but this is also really insane" emotions I was. There were a lot of "wow the animal kingdom is insane" and "that's so cool!", but the one comment that intrigued me was "omg... this is so cruel". I laughed a little, because for a human to call another animal cruel was so ironic. We are responsible for the extinction of hundreds of animals and the death of billions of animals a year for consumption, and this person thought that a lion teaching its cubs to hunt was "cruel"? However (playing the devil's advocate here), if a human was doing this for the education of their child, would it still be considered the same level of cruelty? Is it possible for non-human animals to be cruel? It would then be argued as to how these cubs would learn to hunt...

I couldn't find the original video that I saw, but I found one very similar. Just a heads up, it gets pretty bloody.

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