The internet has been set ablaze this week with news of a dentist from Minnesota accused of killing the beloved “Cecil the lion” on a big game hunt in Zimbabwe.
Walter Palmer’s actions half way around the world have brought about personal and professional consequences. Personally, he could face international charges. Professionally, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, his dental practice closed abruptly on Tuesday.
In this day an age, consequences reach into our community as well online. With the power and the reach of the internet, a dentist in Minnesota can be worldwide name in a matter of minutes. His name became a hashtag (not listed as trending by Twitter Wednesday morning, but #CeciltheLion is) and prior to July 28, his practice’s Yelp page had 5 reviews; by Wednesday morning, it had 6,361.
Another consequence – a positive one – is that “wildlife conservation” started trending on Google. Here in Omaha, we are lucky to get to see positive consequences of wildlife conservation any time we’d like. The Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium is a part of a global wildlife conservation effort. According to its website, their Reproductive Sciences Department has a long-term program in South Africa, working with lions (and elephants, buffalo and antelope). That’s in addition to loads of research and technologies they’re using and discovering here each and every day. Very cool!