Society

12-Year-Old Hunter Sparks Outrage (Photos)

| by Nicholas Roberts
Aryanna Gourdin, 12Aryanna Gourdin, 12

A 12-year-old girl who uploaded a picture of herself with a giraffe she had killed was blasted on social media.

Aryanna Gourdin of Utah was on a hunting trip with her father, Eli, in Africa according to The Sun. Aryanna says that despite being called a "murderer" on social media, she is never going to stop hunting.

"I would never back down from hunting," she said. "I am a hunter and no matter what people say to me, I’m never going to stop."

Several photos from the hunt were uploaded to social media. She responded to her critics by saying that she wants others to experience what she has, according to The Independent.

"It's something I cherish and enjoy and I want other people to see what I experienced," Aryanna said in an interview on "Good Morning America."

Eli defended Aryanna and said the giraffe she killed was overusing valuable resources in the area. He added that meat from the giraffe was used to feed more than 800 orphan children at a local village in South Africa.

He said: "I don’t tell anybody else how to raise their children. We’re proud to be hunters and we’ll never apologize for being a hunter."

Animal conservationists disagree and have condemned the actions of Aryanna on social media.

Masha Kalinina of the Humane Society International said the following about it:

When we allow children to participate in trophy hunting, instead of teaching them to respect creatures we are teaching them that it’s okay to kill for kicks and that animals are worth more dead than alive. Trophy hunting is cruel and does nothing to support conservation in Africa. Humanity and compassion is the kindest example we can set for the next generation.

"This disgusts me," one user on social media wrote. "'Why'? Because being proud of a kill is one thing, but this is like a photoshoot and to me it’s not about killing for ‘sport’ and I don’t see a giraffe being ­something you should kill. There is a difference in killing a deer to feed your family and harvest the pelt and antlers than killing a giraffe and taking pictures of you holding its heart. That isn’t right at all."

"A normal dad would not take his daughter to Africa to kill an animal for fun," said another user. "You’ll argue hunting is what man has always done to justify your actions. Man used to think slavery was OK, too."

Sources: The Sun, The Independent / Photo credit: Aryanna Gourdin/Facebook via IB Times

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