Are people really more outraged by the death of a lion than a human in Calais?

Are people really more outraged by the death of a lion than a human in Calais?

On Wednesday morning, LBC presenter James O'Brien drew a comparison between the public's reaction to two news stories dominating the headlines today.

In fact, it's an observation many others have made online on the back of news that a young Sudanese man was crushed to death by a lorry as he and an estimated 1,500 others tried to enter the Channel Tunnel from Calais overnight.

The two stories dominated the headlines on Wednesday morning

While it is perhaps unfair to say that there has been no "outrage or sadness" over this man's death - the ninth migrant to perish at the Channel Tunnel this summer - it does appear that the fate of Cecil, the lion inhumanely killed in Zimbabwe this week, has received more sympathy from some.

The lion's death - lured out of its national park, shot with a bow and arrow and left bleeding to death for 40 hours - has been described as a "total tragedy", resulted in a petition signed by more than 250,000 and headlines like "The Entire Internet Is Outraged Over the Hunting of Cecil the Lion". And rightly so, people have every right to be angered by this cruelty.

However, the situation of thousands of desperate human beings risking their lives to escape war, poverty and destitution tends to be reduced to stories of "chaos", "border alerts" and concerns over delays for British tourists.

While Nigel Farage has called for the army to be drafted in, even David Cameron came across as crass when addressing the situation in Calais (albeit before news of the man's death had been announced):

I have every sympathy with holidaymakers who are finding access to Calais difficult because of the disturbances there and we will do everything we can to work with the French to bring these things to a conclusion.

There's no point trying to point fingers of blame, it's about working with the French, putting in place these additional security measures, adding in the investment where that's needed - Britain will always come forward with that.

Perhaps Britain could "come forward" with a bit more compassion for fellow human beings too.

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