A company that sparked controversy when it released a Halloween costume parodying the Minnesota dentist that killed an African lion dubbed “Cecil” has vowed to donate all the profits from the sale of the satirical suit to a “wildlife foundation,” bowing to protests from an anti-hunting internet campaign that provided over 50,000 signatures on a petition asking for its removal.
The costume dubbed “Lion Killer Dentist Halloween Costume” and available on the website Costumeish.com comes with a blood splattered smock, rubber gloves and dentist instruments in the pocket and features a cartoonish severed head of a lion for the tongue-in-cheek trick or treater to carry along with his candy bucket.
“Costumeish.com has decided to try and capitalize on Cecil’s killing by selling a ‘Lion Killer Dentist’ costume for Halloween, complete with blood splattered shirt/gloves and a mockery of Cecil’s severed head that Walter Palmer planned on mounting on his wall,” the petition calling for the removal of the costume said. “It is disgusting and sickening for someone to profit from the killing of Cecil.”
For its part Costumeish hiked the price of the Lion Killer costume from $59 to $139 due to “popular demand,” but vowed it would donate 100 percent of the profits of its sale to a wildlife foundation.
“Our intentions are not to make profit off the beloved Lion,” the company said in a posting on its website. “However please remember, if our costume caused an immediate reaction such as disgust or anger to you just imagine how Cecil felt.
The company went on to say it feels that hunting “endangered lions and any kind of animal for that matter is disgusting and should be stopped.”
Costumeish has been the target of media ire over many of its parody costumes, including an “Ebola Costume,” a baby pot leaf costume and one that parodies the spat between Donald Trump and Fox News Channel’s Megyn Kelly.
“We reserve our right to freedom of speech and expression and will not be removing this costume for any reason whatsoever,” the costume company said of the Lion Killer suit.