Sign up below to be added to our mailing list for the latest news updates, access to exclusive contents, and more!
Jimmy Kimmel, Amy Poehler, Mia Farrow, Ricky Martin and other celebrities are expressing sadness and outrage over the death of Cecil, the lion that allegedly was slain by Minnesota dentist Walter Palmer and his hunting partners earlier this month in Zimbabwe.
“I’m honestly curious to know why a human being would feel compelled to do that,” Kimmel said in an emotional monologue Tuesday night. “How is that fun?"
"Goodbye, #CecilTheLion," Poehler wrote on Twitter. "Your roar will be remembered worldwide."
"Animals are not trophies. Ever. #CecilTheLion," Farrow added.
African wildlife officials on Tuesday accused Palmer, 55, of shooting the iconic lion with a crossbow after he and his hunting partners lured 13-year-old Cecil from a protected area. The hunters reportedly tracked Cecil for 40 hours before shooting the lion with a gun, the Australian Broadcasting Corp. reports. The lion was beheaded and skinned, and its tracking collar was removed, according to CNN.
Palmer said he believed the hunt was legal.
Palmer reportedly is wanted on poaching charges, officials in Zimbabwe said. Johnny Rodrigues, chairman of the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force, said Theo Bronkhorst and Honest Ndlovu, a hunter and private game park owner respectively, also face poaching charges. Rodrigues said Palmer paid Bronkhorst and Ndlovu more than $50,000 to hunt the lion.
Meanwhile, animal lovers across the country are striking out against Palmer and his dental practice, posting reviews on River Bluff Dental’s Yelp page. An online petition also has been started that calls for justice for Cecil and for the country to stop issuing permits to kill endangered animals.