Rugged mountains at sunrise.
 
Opinion
Text: The editorial voice of the Mountain Lion Foundation.

12/6/2010

Hard to Believe

There is an e-mail story circulating the Net about a Montana couple being saved from a mountain lion attack by their mule. The story "1 Bad Ass" and the accompanying graphic photographs of the mule fighting and killing the lion are supposed to convey to the gullible public a sense that: 1) mountain lions are dangerous and attack people; and 2) mountain lions (the obvious bad guys in this fairy tale) can be defeated by righteous, rough and tough hunter types, and of course their faithful equine companions.

It's too bad everything about that story is a lie.

1st The Montana couple and their valiant fighting mule are a figment of imagination.

2nd The mule is not fighting a lion, but instead grabbing and tossing the dead body of a mountain lion shot earlier by a New Mexico lion hunter.

3rd These same photos (with slightly differing titles and stories) have turned up in numerous incarnations since they first appeared on the internet around 8-years ago.

I am sure the party who put this story back into circulation felt they were doing their duty in spreading the word about the Big Bad (lions). Unfortunate for them this action only makes it that much easier to disbelieve anything the pro-lion hunting forces have to say.

Let's face it. These guys aren't heroic trailblazing individualists, mountain men, explorers, men-of-action, whatever; such as those who actually opened the American west for settlement. Nor are they hungry, desperate people trying to put food on the table. These folks are a small segment of American society who enjoy killing animals. They do it for the so-called "fun," and also so they can have a trophy to brag about.

Regrettably these are also the very people who seem to have a disproportionate amount of influence over the political entities (state game commissions) which govern the management of America's wildlife. Somehow this has to change. After all, this is the world's greatest Democracy and isn't it time that the decisions which affect our nation's wildlife are made by the majority of its citizens?

Obviously when this mule vs. lion hoax reemerged on the web its proponents intended for it to support their pro-lion hunting position. However if, after reading this blog, viewers instead see it for the sick, manipulative propaganda that it truly is, then I guess it will have finally, in the end, served a useful purpose.

To double check the truth of stories you see on the web go to:

snopes.com

Or, view the album of hoax photos compiled on MLF's facebook page.



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