I think people like condemning others because it makes them feel better about their own lives.
By focusing on how stupid others are, it’s easier to ignore our own poor choices.
Take the championed cause of that little bison calf in Yellowstone National Park. The one that two tourists saw, took to be lost and put in their car to bring to the next rangers’ station.
Not the brightest move ever. Not even close, no matter how well-meaning they were.
Now, those guys fortunately didn’t get mowed over by a suddenly appeared mama bison. But they did get reprimanded, fined and lambasted across the internet. And the baby bison had to be put down.
Everyone freaked out about it. Because, let’s face it, people like making a big deal about animals. They think it makes up for all the times they’ve abused humans with their selfishness (i.e. general egotism) or compassionate irrationality and irresponsibility (i.e. liberalism).
But just because the baby bison story seemed like a great pedestal to climb up on, it turned out to be one more example of how stupid people trying to feel less stupid end up looking more stupid.
And we know that now thanks to Deby Dixon.
According to The Washington Post, which ran her story, “Deby Dixon is a wildlife and nature photographer who lives outside Yellowstone National Park.” And after hearing about the outcry from the calf being picked up by tourists and put down by rangers, she felt the need to speak up.
Here’s what she said…
“I met the bison calf that took a ride in an SUV early one evening as I drove west in Yellowstone National Park’s Lamar Valley, past the pullout known as ‘Picnic.’…
“I spotted the calf near the road and all alone. It was crying out and seemed to be looking for its mother, but no other bison was anywhere close by. Instantly, I knew three things: The calf was orphaned or had become separated from its mother. The calf would not be adopted by another cow and could not survive alone, and so it was just a matter of time before it died or was killed.”
So the baby bison was going to die anyway. Foolish as those tourists were, this was not a matter of humans messing with nature to its ultimate detriment. If anything, shooting the calf was a more merciful ending than it otherwise would have gotten… starving to death or being ripped apart by predators.
It’s a fascinating article from start to finish. And, taken in context, it begs the question of when in the world we’re going to start learning the whole story before we condemn the people involved.