Facebook > Email > More Pinterest Print Twitter Play

How Do We Feel About The Texas Tech Cheerleader Who’s Also A Big Game Hunter?

By Comments

Kendall Jones’ Facebook page features a lot of selfies. In that way, she’s like any other 19-year-old college student. She’s a petite blonde cheerleader who poses in almost all of them with a big smile on her face. But the comments on her photos are pretty rough—usually from strangers who have harsh words for her. “She looks like an alien reptiloid not a a human…,” one declares. “Kendall there is something very cold and empty inside of you,” another starts. In most of Jones’ pictures of herself, she’s posing in camo fatigues, crouched down, to better show off the body of a dead animal she’s killed. 

There are shots of Jones with dead zebras, with dead lions. There’s one with her as a young girl posing with a dead white rhino and a rifle. In another, she‘s smiling next to a cape buffalo with a bright red wound still visible in the creature’s belly. She smiles next to a dead hippo, proudly displays the bow and arrows she used to bring down another lion, lounges next to a dead cheetah splayed out on a rock. There’s one in which she’s small, in the background, to better demonstrate the size of the elephant whose body she stands proudly over, rifle in the air.

It’s not exactly a mystery why so many of the people who comment on Jones’ public Facebook page (she’s set it up so that she’s declared a “public figure” by the site) have mean things to say. Those are a whole lot of majestic creatures, and Jones is proudly posing with their dead bodies and the weapon she used to bring them down.

It’s made her something of an Internet celebrity in recent days. Part of that’s the dead animals, of course—but it’s not like Jones is the only big game hunter to pose with a trophy. She might be the only 19-year-old cheerleader on Facebook to feature so many pictures, though, and it’s clear that the juxtaposition of a fresh-faced young woman and dead animal bodies can strike a visceral nerve for some people. If the person posing with the felled creature looks like, say, Ted Nugent, the outrage tends to be limited. But put a young woman in the photo and it’s a viral sensation.

This collective outrage has culminated in petitions to various bodies over Jones. One, with over 30,000 signatures on Change.org, demands that Jones’ right to hunt animals in Africa be revoked. It’s not clear who in particular this petition is aimed at, or what Jones specifically has done to cause her to be singled out over any of the other hunters who visit Africa with a gun bag. Another, with 130,000 signees, requests that Facebook remove Jones’ page because it “promotes animal cruelty.” 

Reasonable people can argue about big game hunting—and they have, for centuries. Knowing what we know about the intelligence of elephants, for example, it’s possible to look at the young woman posing over the body of one she killed and see a murderer. Others, meanwhile, can look at many of the photos and recognize a cruel reality of the world we live in: that animal habitats are destroyed all over the world, and the fees hunters like Jones pay to kill animals on that land creates an incentive to keep those species viable. One can even recognize both at the same time—there is something visceral and devastating about the celebration of so much death, and that without controlled, permitted, (expensive) hunting, there would probably be more of it. 

Still, it’s hard not to read the petitions against Jones and feel as though there’s something else at work here. The petition that asks African states (presumably all of them?) to ban Jones from their countries reads: 

Kendall Jones is an American born hunter who has entered the continent and has been hunting African wildlife under the facade of conservation. She has publicly stated that she hopes to have a television hunting show and she is using endangered and helpless African animals as a stepping to further her popularity on social media platforms.

The issue here, according to the petition, isn’t so much the trophy hunting as it is the fact that Jones is blowing up on Facebook. It’s one thing to shoot animals, in other words, but in pursuit of likes? That’s perhaps to be expected, though. Whenever you have thousands of people rallying against a young woman, you’re probably going to get an undercurrent of ugliness that has little to do with the purported reasons for the protest, and a lot to do with a disapproval of the pursuits of 19-year-old cheerleaders—like generating a social media presence. 

The comments from the petition’s signees reflect this, too. “Jason Parsons” from Germany writes that “This little bitch will hopefully get what’s coming to her,” while “Gustavo Fideney” claims that he’s signing “Because these animals are almost extinct, and this slut kills them with cruelty.” “Faisal Janabi” of Australia declares that “This dumb bitch is killing near endangered species for fun,” and “Lilian Caughlin” of Golden Valley, Arizona writes that “that girl is butt ugly inside and out and we should be spared just looking at her. Her face would scare hardened headhunters.” 

In other words, Kendall Jones might be committing atrocities by hunting the creatures that she does, or she might be contributing to conservation efforts by paying to preserve animal habitats, or both. But that’s not really what brought her to brief, sudden Internet fame—the undercurrent of misogyny here seems to indicate that what’s most outrageous is that she’s doing all of this while being a young woman. Regardless of how you feel about the animals she hunts, that’s something that we should all be able to recognize as wrong. 

(image via Kendall Jones’ Facebook page.)

Related Content

  • Romulus

    Thanks Dan, good article. I would never harm an animal but that’s just me but it doesn’t bother me if someone else does it by following the rules and laws. I’m not into lowering myself to the level of these keyboard warriors either. They really are a pathetic bunch. And the thought of asking Facebook to remove pictures from an account (these protesters went to look at voluntarily) because they make them uncomfortable is a ridiculous idea. Those people are more dangerous than this hunter is.

    • Lighten up, Frances

      ^Claims he will not lower himself “to the level of these keyboard warriors.” Generalizes by calling them a “pathetic bunch.” Oh, such rich irony.

      • Romulus

        Let me explain it to you since your comprehension skills seem lacking. My use of calling them “keyboard warriors” is because many of them are calling for violence against her. In my opinion, that’s a “pathetic bunch” of people doing that. Not exactly rocket science. I’m saying calling for violence is pathetic.

        • Lighten up, Frances

          And yet the majority of them did not call “for violence against her.” Besides, “keyboard warriors” is a term of mockery used to denote individuals who act like tough guys while hiding behind their computer screens. But most normal, thinking human beings realize that they are harmless gnats on the pimple of the ass of life and, therefore, do not give them a second thought. Your deigning to act above the fray, belittling others, and then resorting to the exact same tactics as those you besmirch.

          Again, I say with full comprehension, “Oh, such rich irony.”

  • Kristen

    I see your point. I find the comments calling her unattractive and other various feminine insults as distasteful and erroneous. However, my own rage over these photos (as someone who has never visited her page and wishes her vapid face would quit appearing in my newsfeed…yet I clicked on this article–hesitantly) stems from her apparent wealth coupled with her complete disregard for life. It sends a message that wealthy people can do whatever they want, regardless of the world around them. I checked the endangered list, and the leopard is listed as critically endangered, the African elephant as vulnerable, and the white rhino as near threatened. I was surprised not to see the African lion on the list because I know I’ve seen an animal documentary recently detailing their plight. My father is a responsible hunter who instilled in me that hunting–ethically– is for over-populated species. And even if this is technically done under conservation guidelines (according to your reporting that the habitat of big game is shrinking and there are too many in their area), that’s still putting the needs of humans before endangered species, and I don’t buy that as true conservation. (Can’t humans use some freaking birth control and get our own overpopulation under control?) Humans are the problem, and I’m upset that humans can’t be trusted not to kill rare animals on their own volition. We really need legislation mandating hunters not kill endangered animals? We can’t be ethical, responsible beings without government interference? Holy bummer, Batman.

    • Lee

      Kristen, well written. I agree completely! Hunting ANY creature on any threatened, endangered, vulnerable, SHOULD NOT be legal, any where, for any amount of money, for anyone!! (My personal feelings are far more intense. Killing for sport is unacceptable to me, & it all makes me sick) And, yes, bc humans Are the problem, we DO need laws & ENFORCEMENT of said laws, to attempt to stop killing any endangered species, & MUCH MORE SEVERE PUNISHMENT for those that do.

    • Ruby

      I agree, but when these animals distinct she will of taken part in it and whether she thinks they will or they won’t, it will show how much her belief in conservation really helped. Can’t stop people from doing the bad, even more so when they take pleasure in doing so.

  • Michelle

    It is just as wrong to “game hunt” if you’re a man and frankly MEN do it every day all the time, but you never see a news article about that? Do you? This is absolutely SEXIST. I don’t think what Jones is doing is right, but you should put the SAME shame and disgust from your article and comments towards the MEN who do it every day. Just because they are men who “game hunt” does NOT mean that it is right!

    • chach616
      • Michelle

        He’s a celebrity, he gets articles written about him all the time. Sorry but it’s not the same.

        • Lisa

          But she set up her facebook profile as a public figure, she’s trying to cultivate a persona and parlay her hunting expeditions into celebrity for herself, she’s hoping to get a reality tv deal out of her hobby of killing animals. She doesn’t get a free pass on criticism just because she’s a woman.

    • Ruby

      How can you determine whether people’s opinions are directed in sexist manor? I am sure most people are not use to seeing such a young girl sitting on top of a leopard with a huge smile on her face that she just killed an animal. I personally find it sexist and though there may be people who are focused on her sex, I think that’s what happens when you post your so called winnings all over your Facebook.

  • Andrea Hawley

    Misogyny? Misogyny is a hatred for and prejudice against women simply because they are female. I hate her for her needless killing of innocent creatures and her narcissistic displays for attention for it. SHE is the misogynist: by being this desperate to seek men’s attention by emulating men’s worst behaviors she brings women down and makes the world an uglier place. Get is straight Texas Monthly.

    • dtechba

      “SHE is the misogynist: by being this desperate to seek men’s attention by emulating men’s worst behaviors she brings women down and makes the world an uglier place. ”
      Your misogyny was proven with that sentence .

  • Josh Robertson

    What about the millions of abortions that take place in our country? Do we think if we attacked young 19 year olds for having abortions on their Facebook pages we would have less murders of unborn children? I think it is sad so many people are wasting energy and outraged when so many other things in this world are going on. What about the other issue going on in our state? Thousands of children fleeing Mexico and coming into Texas? Let’s get real America and focus on real issues…

    • Lighten up, Frances

      **smh** – That was quite a leap Godwin!

    • teresa

      You sir are a fool. There will always be many important issues. But taking the life of an animal to put a tropy on your wall or post online to brag about, is what is at issue here. Citing anything else makes you as dumb as this sub human Kendall.

  • designatedhitter

    Sort of like the reaction to Sarah Palin, her real crime is being a woman.

    • Guest

      No, her crime is being a complete idiot.

      • Guest

        While we’re at it, so is this dolt, who thinks she needs to kill for fun in order to give money to conservation groups, which of course is stupid. Pretty sure they’d accept her check even if she didn’t kill anything.

        If she thinks she’s fooling anyone into thinking she’s anything even vaguely resembling an animal lover, she’s an even bigger moron than she initially seemed to be.

  • Chad W. Eaton

    “The issue here, according to the petition, isn’t so much the trophy hunting as it is the fact that Jones is blowing up on Facebook. It’s one thing to shoot animals, in other words, but in pursuit of likes? That’s perhaps to be expected, though. Whenever you have thousands of people rallying against a young woman, you’re probably going to get an undercurrent of ugliness that has little to do with the purported reasons for the protest, and a lot to do with a disapproval of the pursuits of 19-year-old cheerleaders—like generating a social media presence.” How did this paragraph make it through editing? It’s hilarious.

  • chach616

    I remember the same outrage over Donald Trump and his son posing with the animals they slaughtered in Africa. People were saying they looked evil and ugly and that they were heartless and cruel and sick.
    Maybe it is mysogynistic for you to think that Kendall Jones is being singled out simply because she has a vagina.

  • teresa

    I hope that one of these beautiful, majestic creatures gets the jump on her and tears her apart. ANYONE that hunts for sport is despicable. The people that condone this are selfish idiots who believe they are the most important creatures on the planet. It makes me sick to hear she killed an elephant, especially. Elephants are not only highly intellegent, social, and family oriented but they have also been proven to feel empathy. I wonder how people would feel if she was slaughtering domestic dogs and cats. Outraged, i assume, so why are these animals less important.

  • Corey

    I think it is a very twisted world that is willing to “conserve” a species for the sheer purpose of being able to shoot it later.

  • Lolly’s 2 Cents

    All I can say is …. I’m aggin’ it!!

    • texan190

      What does that even mean?

      • Lolly’s 2 Cents

        Either you’re for it or aggin’ it.
        I’m aggin’ it!

  • texan190

    Oh the things people get mad at. If they actually found out what she is doing….

  • don76550

    Perhaps she should pose with an aborted baby. Then all the liberals would stop whining.

  • Drainageditch

    It is wrong to kill an animal unless it is for food. I don’t care if it is a man or woman. It is wrong to kill an animal for the thrill of killing it.

  • wessexmom

    Regardless of her motives for killing these (mostly endangered) animals Kendall Jones’ sudden rise in internet fame has not been driven by an “undercurrent of misogyny” but by her own ambitious plans for self promotion.
    With her provocative poses, Ms. Jones has chosen to create controversy, thereby making herself a target of outraged animal rights activists and even normal everyday animal lovers–all of which she invites to gain notoriety in order to position herself for future endeavors. Misogyny is a byproduct of this dynamic, not the primary force.

  • marykellogg

    If she were a man, no one would be making a fuss.

  • Carol Morgan

    Kendall Jones controversy should be filed under “How to Manipulate People For Fun and Profit”. It’s what her FB “public figure” page was designed to do. It’s the Kim Kardashian marketing plan that’s being used by so many others. Cue-ing the outrage plays right into her strategy of getting more attention. Isn’t that what twenty year olds do now days?

  • PurdueMatt

    This is barbaric and has no place in the 21st century.

    • TravisJSays

      Yes, selfies and facebook petitions are destroying society.

  • Ruby

    Personally, I don’t agree with the threats and I am sure there are more people/groups out there that partake in this as well. She has made it clear that she isn’t going to stop doing something that other people find to be cruel. What bothers me, is bathing in the African poverty. I am not 100% sure of how much this trip cost, but I heard it is anywhere from a $13,000 to $14,000 package. That could feed a lot of people, $14,000 dollars. What bothered me was her sitting on top of this safari truck filming on her phone poor families desperately grabbing at elephant meat. On top of that, taking photos of dead wildlife, while holding or sitting on top of them smiling big. I believe any animal you kill, you use every bit of that you can in respects of killing that animal, but to treat the wild life as though it is a trophy, sickens me. Though I believe in Karma like many others do, I also believe that she will have to live with the fact that she has killed, whether she feels guilt in that or not. As for the threats and hate comments? -shrugs shoulders- There are consequence to things that you post and just like she is entitled to her so called conservation/sport, others are entitled to their opinion’s as well…good or bad. Sorry Kendall but, Kamas a bitch!

  • imjustsayin

    I really thing that most of you don’t have a complete understanding of what goes on with the animals that this hunter and most every hunter out there kills. Yes, there is a trophy if someone wants to use that part of the carcass but most of the meat in almost every sport killing does get used. If you go sport hunting in South Texas for Wild Hogs, the meat will be donated to local food shelters if not used by the hunter. The elephant that she killed fed hundreds of people. Yes, both the money she paid and the meat went to the african community. Sorry if they used their hands to tear off the meat rather than the proper knives and forks that she cruelly forgot to provide.

    The majority of the animals killed over there are to allow the others to live and not starve to death due to lack of vegetation. We do the same thing here in Texas. Land Owners with deer and other animals have to figure out how many animals the property can support and they cull the rest of the herd so that the majority won’t starve to death. If the African Governments didn’t let rich tourists come over there and do the same things, the game wardens over there would kill the animals themselves.

    Guess what, people – killing of animals is part of life on earth. Humans kill lots of animals every day in order to feed and cloth lots of other humans. Ever been in a slaughterhouse? Its not a pretty sight any time an animal is killed but if we don’t manage their habitats and populations, then most will probably die after much more pain and starvation.