This week host Jimmy Kimmel became visibly choked up as he described the death of Cecil, a beloved Zimbabwean lion, as a “disgusting tragedy.” In addition, a diverse array of stars like Olivia Wilde, Alyssa Milano, Newt Gingrich, and Judd Apatow all weighed in with disgust or anger at the allegations that Minnesota dentist Walter Palmer paid $50,000 to illegally lure Cecil from his home before decapitating him.
“I hope that #WalterPalmer loses his home, his practice & his money. He has already lost his soul…” tweeted Sharon Osbourne on Wednesday.
The backlash came on the same day a University of Cincinnati police officer was indicted for the shooting death of Samuel Dubose, an unarmed black man. The differing levels of outrage for the two deaths did not go unnoticed.
Many on social media pointed out that while celebrities and politicians seem quick to denounce Palmer and pay reverence to a dead lion, some don’t feel the need to similarly speak out about the recent spate of violence faced by people of color at the hands of police.
Writer and activist Luvvie Ajayi posted on Facebook, “Jimmy Kimmel cried about Cecil the Lion. Who else has he cried for or is that level of sadness reserved for murdered animals? I’ll be here waiting.”