Jimmy Kimmel Reacts To Cecil The Lion Killing, Tears Up As He Suggests Donating To WildCRU

Jimmy Kimmel may typically be a man of jokes and pranks, but he used his Tuesday night show to address the Cecil the Lion killing that has been making international headlines. Minnesota dentist Walter Palmer killed the protected lion during a hunting trip to Zimbabwe earlier this month, and Kimmel said what many others have been thinking as he opened his July 29 show.

As ABC News shares, Walter Palmer insists that his Zimbabwe hunt was “legal and properly handled and conducted.” However, Jimmy Kimmel, and many around the world, aren’t convinced. Kimmel spent more than four minutes talking about Cecil the Lion’s death on his recent show.

Most would say that Kimmel managed to strike a difficult balance as he talked about Cecil the Lion’s killing. Jimmy managed to insert some jokes throughout the segment, but he also got emotional and held back tears toward the end of the piece.

Kimmel joked that as he first read about the story, it had been believed that the hunter was a Spaniard, and Jimmy was relieved it wasn’t an American. As everybody knows at this point, however, Cecil the Lion was killed by American dentist Walter Palmer.

The talk show host walked through the alleged details of Cecil’s heartbreaking death and what the hunting team has said since then. Kimmel noted Palmer’s statement that has just come out, and then questioned the manhood of those who feel they have to pursue trophy hunting like this. Kimmel even slipped in a Bill Cosby joke along the way.

As the segment went on, Kimmel got more and more worked up, and he also shared a bit about Palmer’s prior hunts and troubles. Though the public outrage has been intense, Jimmy says that he’d like to see some good come out of this story.

As Jimmy Kimmel teared up, he said that he would like for Americans to show that they are not all “jackholes” like Palmer. He shared the website address of the University of Oxford Wildlife Conservation Unit, the group that had been studying and tracking Cecil the Lion prior to his death. Kimmel urged people to donate to WildCRU to try to turn this heartbreaking story into a positive in some way.

The clip of Jimmy Kimmel’s segment already has nearly 10,000 likes on YouTube. In addition, it looks like the WildCRU website has been getting some very heavy traffic, as it seems to be experiencing some crashing. Reports indicate that the hunting guides in Zimbabwe who worked with Palmer are facing charges, and the Minnesota dentist may, as well.

Palmer’s dental practice website and other online pages seem to be down, and both Palmer and River Bluff Dental have been deluged by bad reviews on Yelp. Will Jimmy Kimmel’s passionate segment about Cecil the Lion propel people to donate to WildCRU as a way to try to right the wrong that happened when the beloved creature was killed? He clearly hopes so, and those following the story may be anxious to embrace a way to make a positive impact.

[Images via Frazer Harrison / Getty Images, YouTube]