Most people wouldn't wish "getting trampled to death by an angry elephant" on their worst enemy. It would seem, however, that this rule flies out of the window when the person getting trampled to death by an angry elephant is a big game hunter.
Just a heads up, if you are a big game hunter and you're ever unlucky enough to get trampled to death by an angry elephant, you should know that large portions of the internet will react unsympathetically to your grisly demise. See below:
Today's good news; professional hunter Ian Gibson trampled to death by elephant he was tracking to kill for ivory. TGIF
— Mr. B (@Benogola) April 17, 2015
a dude got killed by an elephant he was hunting and im really glad. why would you kill an elephant. http://t.co/5AY2invSbU
— Famous Scotty Tonga (@ScottyTonga) April 17, 2015
Don't trip over your gun on your way to hell, dude http://t.co/PWQBpwAAQ8
— David Thorpe (@Arr) April 17, 2015
On Friday evening, news emerged of an American big game hunter getting charged down and killed by an elephant in Zimbabwe.
Ian Gibson, who it turns out was quite a big deal in big game hunting circles, had been tracking the young bull for a while. Gibson, who had separated from his group, had got to within 50 metres of the animal when it turned suddenly and began a full-speed charge.
Reports suggest Gibson only had time to fire off one shot, before the elephant ran him down. A statement, posted online, described the scene as being "...very graphic."
Paul Smith, managing director of Chifuti Safaris, the company who had recruited Gibson to lead the hunt in Chewore North, had this to say:
“The American client and the trackers are still too traumatised to give us full details..."
Smith went on to say that the one-legged Gibson, a hunter of 25 years, was "fit and strong," and that he had already killed a leopard during the hunt.
It's sad when somebody dies, but if you're killing an animal for fun and it kills you first, I have limited sympathy. http://t.co/n3uGq1Qvm5
— Freddie (@freddiedeboer) April 17, 2015
It is believed the elephant had been in musth, a period where it produces more testosterone than normal. In layman's terms, this means the elephant was in a grumpy teenager-like mood and that Gibson's presence really pissed him off.
Stories like this will always split an audience down familiar, and well-dug, trenches. There are those who will sympathise with the death of a human being, no matter his profession, where there are those that will say Gibson got what was coming to him for killing wild animals in the name of sport and leisure.