The king of Spain, Juan Carlos, broke his hip yesterday, Friday the 13th. I read about it at BBC News online. He wasn’t in Spain when this happened. He was on a private trip to Botswana, a country in southern Africa. What was he doing there? Hunting elephants. Can you believe the gaul of this man? Who does he think he is, Ernest Hemingway? Doesn’t he know about wildlife conservation and eco-tourism? What a beast!
He is worshipped by his subjects because he facilitated the transition from brutal dictatorship to modern democracy that Spain experienced in the mid-Seventies. He single-handedly foiled a coup d’etat by military leaders. I’m sure that they wanted to form a Junta. Well, old Juan Carlos (who is in his early Seventies) went on television and said, “Be cool, peeps. We’re gonna be like the rest of Western Europe now.” I think the erstwhile Junta was even relieved.
According to the Wikipedia entry on Juan Carlos, the man is little better than a serial killer. He hunted and killed a group of bears in Romania, including a pregnant female. How can he live with himself? I’m sure he’s sleeping like a baby right now on a cloud of morphine-induced dreams. This is his fourth surgery in two years. I hope it shaves a few years of his life and teaches him a lesson about being the big macho hunter.
Don’t get me wrong. I get hunting. I understand why people get off on hunting and fishing, but there’s a way of doing it. Go out and shoot a deer. Make it into steaks and sausages and mount its head on your wall. Go for it. But hunting down elephants? Nine bears in one outing? That is over the top. Excessive, to say the least.
I don’t care if you are King Muck of Turd Hill. Show some restraint. It’s funny because Juan Carlos has all these honors and titles that other monarchs have bestowed on him. From the Queen of Denmark he became a member of the Order of the Elephant. Maybe he should devote some energy and money to protecting these magnificent animals, rather than destroying them.