I expect the mourning and accolades to pour in thick and heavy for the next week or so. And I feel a great deal of sympathy for his widow and the two children he has left behind, children that he apparently adored. But I have to say that this is a case of the odds finally catching up with Steve. When I (infrequently) watched him on television, I usually found myself screaming at the screen, usually telling the “Croc Hunter” what an idiot he was. He routinely took chances that were avoidable, and played fast and loose with his personal safety, and the safety of his family. Remember the infamous ‘dangle the baby while feeding the croc’ incident?
Irwin always made me angry because he sensationalized the serious work of wildlife biologists and conservationists, who are often placed in danger, not for ratings, but because they are trying to save a species or a habitat, or to advance the body of human knowledge.
But as much as he pissed me off, I have to acknowledge Irwin’s deep and sincere love of animals and wildlife. And although he did things that I would have considered foolhardy, he was doing what he loved. I just hate that he has left behind children that now have to grow up without a father.
I don’t think Steve Irwin took unnecessary chances. His mission was to publicise conservation and issues related to the animals he loved. Do you really think that he would have gained nearly so much publicity if he played it safe?
Also, if the accounts I’ve read were accurate, what happened was extremely unlikely; the stingray’s barb apparently poked a hole in his heart. This almost never happens. So the chance he took was not as unwise as the outcome might make it seem.
I honestly don’t understand all the attention this is getting online. You’d think the guy who played Porkins in Star Wars had risen from the dead.
Why is it such a shock that a guy who spent a lifetime pissing off vicious critters finally got bumped for poking one pooper too many?
On the few occasions where I was forced to have him on the TV at work, I also had the same “Stop doing that!” reaction as you did, PAgent.
So who cares if he claimed to care about animals? Look how he disrespected them — and by his example showed millions of kids the improper way to behave around wildlife. Marlon Perkins never pulled that kinda crap on Wild Kingdom.
Today, the world has one less D-List celeb. Tomorrow he’ll be replaced.
By the way, after reading what I wrote I noticed it comes off as a LOT more vitriolic than I feel. Just imagine me speaking matter-of-factly — like on the phone.
Unnecessary. Yes. He never came off as professional, and I’ve been predicting this since the first time I saw this jackass in action. I used to raise snakes. I have some experience with venomnous snakes. Enough to know that if you want to do it for a lifetime, you do it infrequently, with precautions in place and with GREAT respect for the *wild* animals you are handling. I’d rather play with loaded guns while drunk than predict what aggitated reptiles will do. I KNOW what’s going to happen if I do that: Disaster. With these animals, maybe today, maybe tomorrow, maybe never… And he taught people that this kind of behavior is acceptable.
Once, some co-workers in a far distant land ran across Steve. Or rather, his crew. They were busy worrying a rather venomnous snake until it was tired enough that Steve could drive out and handle it ’safely.’ Didn’t see that part on TV, did we? So he used precautions, but if you play the game, any game, long enough, the odds catch up to you. Like PAgent, I find his self-aggrandizing approach and putting himself ahead of his wife and kids sad and deplorable. But evolution will work despite us, or because of us.
I couldn’t agree more with your point of view. Surely, no one was surprised. As a grandparent, I am appalled that he took the risks he did. It isn’t good enough to say he adored his children. He has to be responsible enough to make sure he is around to see them into adulthood. He failed.