“We take dead animals and bring them back to life. And, I mean, there can be nothing—that I know of—more satisfying than that.” [“Practically Alive: The Art of Taxidermy Lives in Franklin,” Xpress, Feb. 13]
Let us be clear: Bill Fuchs doesn’t just take dead animals; he takes their lives and then re-creates them (ostensibly as monuments to himself and his clientele). For truth’s sake, we must be absolutely clear that Fuchs is not bringing anything back to life; he (and those he works for) are killing.
If Fuchs knows of no pleasure greater than making inanimate objects out of wild, resplendent and vital creatures, I pity him. It might be said that a man (and a culture) who mistakes the false gaze of glass marbles for the authentic gaze of a sentient creature may not have much sentience within himself.
If Fuchs (or any other “sport” hunter) ever has the blessed opportunity to look a lion or other wild creature in the eyes again, I would encourage him to imagine what that creature sees as it looks back into his eyes. Would that lion recognize him as a distant cousin, a fellow “child of God” or, perhaps, even what we designate as “human”?
By hesitating to pull the trigger and actually looking back at that creature in the eyes, Fuchs may discover that there is much more to life than the breathless objects that adorn his walls. He might also discover a much deeper and more meaningful satisfaction.
— David C Brown, Jr.