Born Free USA Blog
by Adam M Roberts,
Chief Executive Officer
When it comes to animals, Adam Roberts not only talks the talk, but also walks the walk. Since beginning his animal advocacy career in Washington, D.C. in 1991, Adam's ambition, tireless involvement, and profound knowledge of conservation and wildlife issues have cemented him as a go-to voice for protecting animals — and he has elevated Born Free USA to the respected and impactful organization that we know today. Adam's compassionate, informed, and forward-thinking blogs will surely motivate you to join us in our fight to Keep Wildlife in the Wild.
I cannot say I am a fan of One Direction. Nor can say I am not a fan. Having just heard Brian May of Queen reprise “Born Free” I must admit that I am rather comfortable with my ignorance of contemporary boy bands.
But I can say with confidence and authority that one of its members, Louis Tomlinson, is being childishly ignorant when he says he wants a pet monkey like one of his idols. “I am a big Michael Jackson fan. He was a real inspiration and had so many great songs,” says the (this is hard for me to admit) Brit.
To privately possess a primate is to publicly pronounce one’s insensitivity to animals and is a surefire way to court trouble. If you have any doubts about the dangers of keeping monkeys as “pets,” then check out Born Free USA’s Exotic Animals Database, which as of this writing lists 288 incidents of privately possessed primates coming into conflict with people.
It always infuriates me when celebrities spout off about how much they enjoy some form of animal exploitation, because their thoughtless comments can inspire a lot of their fans to act similarly. Tomlinson’s not exactly a boy, anyway — he’s 20 — and he should have grown out of his infantile fantasies about furry “pets.”
Once Tomlinson recants his desire for a pet primate, maybe I’ll start singing his praises.