Lewis Hamilton realises that it was a mistake to pose with a lion cub. It doesn’t mean that he’s a bad person

Lewis Hamilton is a good person. This is self-evident to anybody with a modicum of observational talent. He also likes animals. He likes to post statements on social media about fundamental issues such as climate change and sometimes he gets flak for it because he’s very open.

Lewis Hamilton with lion cub. Photo in public domain.

One such example of criticism occurred in November 2015 when he posted online, on Twitter and Facebook, that he loved animals together with a photograph of him cuddling a lion cub. I think the picture on this page is one of those photographs. There are several photographs online of Lewis Hamilton with big cat cubs and adult big cats for that matter.

The director of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), Elisa Allen, criticised him at the time and rightly so but I think she should have done it privately. It was unfair to do it publicly. I say this because he made a genuine mistake. He didn’t realise at the time that if a high profile individual cuddles a tiger or lion cub they are indirectly promoting the concept that these animals are there for our amusement and to be used.

This promotes animal abuse because there are many businessmen who know that people like lion cubs and they set up a business allowing people to photograph themselves with them. The cubs live miserable lives. They are sometimes removed from their mother. The whole process is objectionable and very much against animal welfare.

So Lewis Hamilton was criticised for making a mistake. I am sure that he realises this and it won’t happen again. Let’s not be too hard on the guy. He’s a good guy and he is exceptionally talented. Leave him alone please.