What is the reaction of Daily Mail readers? Many of them are mourning the polar bear and simply ignoring the death of a young man:
Daniel: Sadly today we are one more polar bear less due to human infringement.
JD: How dare they kill that beautiful animal! They were in the bear's habitat so must take the consequences.
Lucy: How dare they kill the Polar Bear..... This infuriates me!!!!
Bright & Sparking: Yet another example or the most disgusting animal on this planet.. the human being..
Paula: Poor Polar bear....RIP...
Tom: Poor polar bear
Sadie: As usual - a wild animal is killed for displaying its natural behaviour. What an ignorant and selfish species the human race is.
I enjoy nature a great deal. I chose to live in an outer suburb where we've been visited by koalas, echidnas, blue tongues, parrots of all kinds - we've even had kangaroos hopping down our street.
But I can't help but think something is wrong here. Why would your first reaction not be regret for the loss of life of a promising young man? Why put polar bears above humans?
If any of my readers disagree I'd be happy to consider their arguments. But it seems to me that this reaction of mourning the bear and not the human reveals not so much a love of nature but a diminished attitude toward mankind.
Modern forms of humanism seem to lead not to a warm and appreciative account of what humans are, but to a negative and hostile one.