Infamous molar-yanker, one Dr. Walter Palmer, DDS has returned to work. It’s been six weeks since our esteemed practitioner has dared to step foot into his place of business, probably to even show his face to the world. The sudden announcement of his return seemed to catch protestors off-guard, as they were far outnumbered by the media eager to push this story as far as they can. To what end? I’ve never quite understood the allure of hunting, from the ridiculous vermin that continue to build their frustrating nests in the corners of my garage, to the magnificent beasts that roam the wild fields of Africa. Killing for sport doesn’t quite seem, well, too human of us. Oh, I know quite a few hunters, had quite a few in the family. Even had the occasional deer or moose steak. Not sure what attracted my family to the sport but I never cared to find out. I never cared to ask either. There were no deer heads mounted in our home; no stuffed birds or the like. At least those I knew who enjoyed the sport, for whatever reason, made it a point to keep the freezers of their friends and families well stocked with wild meat. So it was when I was growing up.

Any chance you're going to take a bus to another location later?

Any chance you’re going to take a bus to another location later?

Even though the protests have dwindled some, I seriously doubt that Dr. sharpshooter will ever live this down. It may very well have been his boyhood dream, stalking the wild animals of Africa with his trusty bow; a dream that has now become a nightmare. I’m not sure how this plays out; hunting is still legal, although it’s unclear if this particular hunt was. Zimbabwe had requested extradition of the good dentist. And his guide will go on trial later this month. Fortunately for Dr. Robinhood of Bloomington, Zimbabwe has thought better of their demand for they fear it could jeopardize the very hunting industry that supports over 800,000 Zimbabwean families. There is, after all, a profit to be made in death. But I’m sure that given the beauty and majesty of the victim, this will not die down for Dr. Palmer. Animal rights activists have a long memory. How long will his patients be willing to cross their lines just to have their teeth cleaned? How long can these protests last?

All because this one human decided that it would be his right to kill.

Coincidentally, there is another medical office just sixteen minutes northeast of Dr. Palmer’s practice. No disturbances were reported there yesterday. It’s business as usual for the practitioners of this medical art. The compound bow has been replaced by the scalpel and the forceps. Just as deadly to be sure. But here, other magnificent creatures die daily to no alarm of anyone in the Minneapolis suburbs. Dr. Palmer had a guide; here, the hired hands cover their faces with surgical masks.

All because one human decided that it would be her right to kill.

For shame, conflating the death of the noble beast with that of a clump of pesky cells destined to be a human. But this is where we have come in our evolution. Death for sport, death for convenience; it all looks the same to me.

Sorry to be terse, but my patience is gone. I spent most of my life that odd conservative, one who was willing to look the other way to support a woman’s right to choose. I just couldn’t justify how I had the right to demand that a woman have a child against her wishes while claiming to support the rights of the individual. I struggled with my own shame, my own dilemma that yes, I believed a human life was being taken. But I had no right to interfere, no right or justification to intercede. Therefore, it was easier to just ignore it, go along with my life knowing that I wasn’t complicit, that someone else would have to live with the guilt or the shame or whatever moral disruption follows the event. Forcing a woman to deliver a baby was something I could never imagine as a free man, a man of conscience, a man dedicated to the free will of the individual.

But try as I might, I could get no sympathies or concessions from either entrenched side of the argument. To my conservative friends I was a traitor; to my liberal friends, I hate women. Pure and simple; I was wrong at either turn. That was okay; I never found myself having to make that decision, to be part of it. Too monumental to be made from outside of those actually involved. I was okay if I was left out of it; I would never put a woman in that position and would never let myself get into that position either. Period. Neat how being responsible works. Or so I thought.

There are many like me, believe it or not. But we are tired. We are being forced, against our wishes, to choose between two factions who wish to never close the divide. Compromise has been lost; so it has with me. If I were a willing expectant father, her right to kill my unborn child trumps my desire to be that father. Why? If I decide to walk away, her right to make me responsible until well into that child’s adulthood is enforced as well. Three people involved, only one has rights. Why?

I started to feel queasy knowing that I was paying for these procedures. Of course, I couldn’t make that argument known, lest I be labeled a racist, hater, misogynist et al. And of course, I wasn’t paying for the procedure I was told. Even though I’m not an idiot and like the majority of the population, I know damned well what’s going on with my tax dollars. Safe and rare was our mantra then. Same day service, best price in town is the new motto. How many children were murdered on the day Cecil was struck by the arrow on the African plain? Why none of course. These aren’t babies, they certainly aren’t human and besides, they’re not fully alive until they reach the crib in the nursery at home. So many ways to argue for death; so many reasons to justify giving up on our humanity.

You finally lost me with the Planned Dismemberment videos. I was watching a news show late one night and a supporter of Planned Infanticide had decided that she wasn’t going to speak on the subject at all because she was just going to be labeled a baby-killer. No one had called her that. Maybe it was a moment of clarity on her part, I don’t know. But I listened as she justified the existence of Planned Non-Parenthood and skirted the issue of partial birth abortion. How wonderful she posited, that something good could come from something so tragic like an abortion. She quickly caught herself; tragic. Indeed. If these children are being harvested, and they are, it is precisely because they are human. And for most of the tissue to be viable, the “donor” has to be alive our mere seconds dead. Of course, she hasn’t seen any of the videos, claiming they were heavily edited. Well, I saw them in their entirety. She’s not even a good liar, but what would one expect from someone who feels no pang of conscience knowing that children are indeed being left to die on the tables of the exam room or dissected while their “non-human” hearts are still beating. It wasn’t the videos themselves mind you; it was the mindless, unwavering mantra of “it’s her right” that finally pissed me off. If you can’t be disturbed by the sale of dismembered human children, we no longer need to have a discussion.

No, you had your chances. All I ever asked for was to keep the murder of your children to yourself. But you decided I need to pay; pay to have them killed or pay to have them fed until they’re twenty-eight. Mine or not. Somehow a woman’s right to choose leapt forward from the act of procreation to the consequences of it, and everyone but she is responsible for her actions. You only had to compromise with me, to be honest, to be introspective, to be moral. You failed.

It will be interesting to see how long Dr. Palmer has to hide his face for the killing of a wild creature on the plains of Africa. And for every day that the protestors make his life a living hell, another medical office, not twenty minutes away, will continue to churn out it’s product, whatever you want to call it, how ever you want to justify it, killing for the sake of killing because one more woman decided it was her right to do so.