The scandal surrounding Cecil the Lion is not going away any time soon.
As a quick refresher: a Minnesota dentist named Dr. Walter Palmer has admitted to paying $50,000 in order to hunt down a lion in Africa earlier this month.
Turns out, the lion was internationally-known and protected and it was against the law to kill him.
Palmer has since come under major fire, with folks protesting outside his office in Minnesota and Jimmy Kimmel even breaking down while calling Palmer some very bad names.
In a letter to patient (while his practice remains closed for the foreseeable future), Palmer said he believed his hunt was 100% legal and he "had no idea that the lion I took was a known, local favorite, was collared and part of a study until the end of the hunt."
"Again, I deeply regret that my pursuit of an activity I love and practice responsibly and legally resulted in the taking of this lion. That was never my intention."
As you might expect, though, this explanation does not sit well with PETA, which has released a statement of its own to E! News. It reads:
"Hunting is a coward’s pastime. If, as has been reported, this dentist and his guides lured Cecil out of the park with food so as to shoot him on private property, because shooting him in the park would have been illegal, he needs to be extradited, charged, and, preferably, hanged."
PETA President Ingrid Newkirk concludes:
To get a thrill at the cost of a life, this man gunned down a beloved lion, Cecil with a high-powered weapon.
All wild animals are beloved by their own mates and infants, but to hunters like this overblown, over-privileged little man, who lack empathy, understanding, and respect for living creatures, they are merely targets to kill, decapitate, and hang up on a wall as a trophy.
The photograph of this dentist, smiling over the corpse of another animal, who, like Cecil, wanted only to be left in peace, will disgust every caring soul in the world.
Do you think Dr. Palmer ought to be hanged? Chime in now and check out these adorable animals to feel better about the entire thing: