In early July, animal lovers and activists the world over were outraged when recreational big-game hunter and American dentist Walter Palmer shot, tracked, and beheaded Cecil the lion. Cecil was a male African lion who was being tracked and studied by Oxford University, and who was beloved by all who knew him.
With mobile devices accounting for more than half of all online searches, word traveled fast. The lion’s untimely beheading went viral, and everyone from PETA organizers to internet vigilantes worked together to call out Dr. Palmer for the savage and senseless murder of Cecil the lion.
Although the initial clamor has died down, there are still some folks who are hoping to cash in on the tragedy — by producing Halloween costumes that represent both the lion and its killer.
According to the New York Post, costumer distributor Yandy.com introduced a shimmering, crushed velvet romper, clad with a lion’s mane hood and a majestic tail. Yandy.com has stated that 20% of proceeds earned from its Cecil costume will go to the World Wildlife Fund to support animal conservation.
For those who are seeking a more villainous ensemble for this October 31, Costumeish.com has recently introduced a “Lion Killer Dentist Halloween Costume,” that includes a blood-spattered medical smock with dental tools in the pocket, bloody gloves, and a stuffed lion’s head.
The killing of Cecil the lion sparked an important global conversation about animal rights and human privileges. Although many people feel the “killer dentist” costume is in poor taste or that it glorifies big-game hunting, Costumeish.com announced on the product listing that the getup has actually increased in price due to popular demand.
Of course, this is normal for American culture. After all, yesterday’s news is today’s meme, and tomorrow’s Halloween costume.