‘Cecil’ was not my beloved… but his death made me think


Few (if any) of these people rallying for ol’ Cecil have shown their public concern and care for Zimbabweans (beyond stifled jokes about the country being mismanaged and some such “woe is Zimbabwe and her faceless people” type jibes). I’m not asking that they do, but that they don’t is quite telling.

Amidst all the white noise, it’s become apparent to me that a lion, as you must already know, is more valuable than any Zimbabwean. Me included.


But before I show myself out, let me say this again for the rabble-rousers at the back, as a Zimbabwean:

  • I had no idea there was a Cecil before his killing became news (and I’m not alone there)
  • I care for my country’s wildlife, but, if I’m being 100% honest, I actually don’t care about Cecil. At least not singularly.
  • I care that our systems continue to be exploited by people like that Minnesota man and his enablers without and within countries like my own
  • I care that if an African had shot that lion he would be a “poacher,” but that Minnesota man is a “hunter” and will soon shoot again…

On a socio-cultural and personal level, as a MaSibanda (Title given to women from my kin because our family totem is the Lion. The loud roaring one to be exact) Cecil was in many ways my beloved. Lions bear a special significance to me. BUT the furore isn’t rooted in my people’s totem and the related beliefs. That has been ignored.   (•_•)

— Ottilia Anna Maunganidze

via Cecil’ was not my beloved… but his death made me think | Conversation Zimbabwe.

Note: The entire article is a great read on the realities of the ground, the neo-colonialism that plagues African nations still, and the hopeless “White Hunter vs White Guilt Savior Gang” that has played out over social media. The pushback being given to the massive outpouring, celebrity teeth/tweet gnashing, the late night talk show host crying, are nothing but crocodile tears. That is why you have #AllLionsMatter & #BlackPride trending on Twitter. To be not so blithe about it these same people who exhibit *crickets* on social media deserve some attention policing when they fall into tired tropes of the MSM that love to express a paternal outrage at deep dark Africa that allows this sort of thing to go on. That only White Americans & their Savior Complex (born of the “White Man’s Burden” Kipling) spoke so long ago about should cause many who shared the story to interrogate their motives & their social media usage. Instead there were cries & whines about it from the very epicenter of privilege. It disgusted me, to my core.

2 thoughts on “‘Cecil’ was not my beloved… but his death made me think

    • THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR WRITING IT ! My goodness as I was seeing the vitriol swirling around it, couldn’t quite articulate what *I* an american felt, and how the people I saw shouting about it…were somehow doing so for the sound of their own voice & their white savior/ neocolonial / whiteman’sburden+guilt BS.

      Now today it the stories are all about how this “poor dentist is being harassed & bullied online & in real life” and I just can’t. The level of “we really don’t care” is starting to show. I just can’t.

      Glad to follow your blog as well, and look forward to reading more of your work in the future 🙂

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