Tess Thompson Talley: Big game hunter becomes reviled following black giraffe kill and CBS This Morning interview after claiming she was providing a necessary service.
An American woman who received death threats after she killed a giraffe in South Africa says she has no regrets almost a year after photos of her proudly posing with the dead animal went viral.
Tess Thompson Talley, 38, defended her love of hunting in a CBS interview airing on Friday, saying: ‘They [animals] are put there for us, we harvest them, we eat them!’
In the interview, Talley was seen at her home in Odessa, Texas, dressed in camouflage gear and filmed killing a wildebeest on a wildlife ranch.
When asked about the black giraffe she’d killed during her gaming trip to South Africa, she laughed: ‘He was delicious!’
Talley, who works in a ball-bearing factory, then showed off the gun case she had made from the skin of the dead animal.
‘This is a part of the black giraffe that I shot, something I could take around with me, and have on my hunts!’ she stated, as she slung the case around.
‘I also have decorative pillows made out of him, and everybody loves them,’ the woman declared.
EXCLUSIVE: Hunter Tess Talley is speaking out for the first time since her photo of a giraffe she killed in South Africa in 2017 prompted worldwide outrage.
In a new CBSN Originals documentary, @adamyamaguchi followed her as she tracked a wildebeest on a wildlife ranch. pic.twitter.com/94Qc52KIAg
— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) June 7, 2019
Tess Thompson Talley defends big game hunting expeditions:
After the segment aired, Talley joined CBS This Morning live in the studio, where she was interviewed by a group of panelists.
During the interview, Talley insisted that her hunting trips were actually helpful to the animal kingdom, rather than harmful.
‘We are preserving… we are managing herds, we’re managing numbers of wildlife,’ she insisted.
Added Talley, ‘I am proud to be a hunter, and I’m proud to hunt, and I am proud of [killing] that giraffe’.
Her appearance on CBS comes almost a year after the images of her posing with the giraffe (predictably) caused outrage online.
Tess Thompson Talley reviled on social media:
The disturbing images were originally taken in 2017, but only caught wind on the web last July.
Following the images going viral, Talley received a barrage of death threats on social media.
‘Tess Thompson Talley: Here’s hoping you die a horrific bloody death,’ one wrote.
‘I hope that Tess Thompson Talley will die the worst possible death,’ posted another.
Told Talley of the backlash during Friday’s interview, ‘It got really bad, (people) spreading out addresses, showing up my work, calling employer trying to get me fired.’
However, she maintained she has an ‘amazing boss’ who supported her throughout the ordeal, and that she would do it all again.
Tess Thompson Talley: No love lost for her haters.
In addition to death threats from Twitter users, Talley also became a target of media outlets and celebrities when the pictures went viral last July.
News outlet Africa Digest called Talley a ‘savage’ in the tweet.
‘White American savage who is partly a Neanderthal comes to Africa and shoot down a very rare black giraffe courtesy of South Africa stupidity,’ their tweet read.
Several celebrities also hit out at Talley, including Will and Grace actress Debra Messing, who called the hunter a ‘disgusting, vile, amoral, heartless, selfish murderer’.
‘With joy in her black heart and a beaming smile she lies next to the dead carcass of a *rare* black giraffe in South Africa. Giraffes are the epitome of gentle giants. They glide across the plains, like liquid; awe inspiring creatures who spend their days eating leaves and caring for their young. How DARE she,’ Messing wrote in a lengthy post.
Also joining in against Talley was British comedian Ricky Gervais who skewered Talley, saying: ‘What’s 16 feet tall and has a c*** on the back of its neck?’
Gervais also attacked Talley’s argument likening the death to euthanizing a pet. ‘Imagine a vet paying you to put down your dog and then taking a selfie next to the corpse,’ he tweeted.
‘I’m sick of Trophy Hunters trying to excuse their grim sport by saying they provide a service. They exploit the needs of the poor,’ he added.
Talley shrugged off the controversy, telling the dailymail, ‘They’re using it for their fame.. I don’t really think they have a point.’
Undeterred, the avid hunter has continued posed for pictures alongside a variety of other exotic animals that she has killed and continues and plans to kill.
In pictures shared to Facebook, Talley is seen smiling alongside a dead zebra and a dead kangaroo.
During her CBS appearance, host, Gayle King opined that Talley’s interest in hunting seemed ‘to go beyond a sport’, as she enjoyed making products out of animal skins and posting pictures online.
Talley defended the snaps, saying: ‘The pictures are a tradition that hunters have done long before social media. When social media came around, that’s when there was an issue, that’s when people started backlash’
‘I was posting that for myself, my friends and family, and tonnes of like-minded people I communicate with and associate with on social media.’
Tess Thompson Talley is just benefiting from white privilege also known as America’s Caucasian Superiority Complex
— Alejandro Rodriguez (@beachmist) June 7, 2019
Just remember this, there has been an increase in big game hunters being savagely killed by the game they love to slaughter. I hope that someday a den of lions enjoy how tasty you are after you are mauled and eaten by them. There will be no tears shed for you..#tessthompsontalley
— Donald Powers (@doninoldhickory) June 7, 2019