In August, Donald Trump Jr. went to Mongolia to hunt. While there, Junior reportedly killed an argalis mountain sheep. The wild sheep are found throughout central Asia and are considered endangered, as their numbers have been significantly decreasing over the past couple of decades. Because they are protected by the Mongolian Laws on Fauna and Hunting, few permits for hunting them are given out, and they cost a lot of money. ProPublica reports that Trump Jr. has the extra dubious distinction of receiving his permit retroactively. “It’s unusual for permits to be issued after a hunter’s stay. It was one of only three permits to be issued in that hunting region, local records show.”
The trip, which the Mongolian government and the U.S. government had to provide security for, will have cost tax payers quite a bit of money. ProPublica explains that the process of getting a permit like the one Trump Jr. belatedly received is already dubious and “political,” But the fact that Trump Jr. is … Donald Trump the president’s son makes it a special kind of terrible. They also report that after Junior’s trip into the mountains to kill endangered wild sheep, he met “privately” with Mongolian President Khaltmaagiin Battulga.
None of this is surprising, as the unseemly workings of the wealthy in our world are never particularly surprising these days. But these processes are doubly dubious when one considers the implications of silver-spooned, entitled kids using the planet as their trophy-hunting playground. Especially when those useless children are default ambassadors of our country, because their corrupt parent is president of the United States.
Trump Jr.’s response to the ProPublica article is that he planned the trip before his father announced that he was running for president and that the trip had been purchased by Junior personally at a National Rifle Association charity auction. Of course, he didn’t take the trip until after his father was president and about a month after his father and the president of Mongolia met to discuss U.S. support.
According to ProPublica, Junior killed the animal at night, and they took images the next day—though Junior didn’t allow anyone to join him in the photos with the downed argalis.
The local guides, who said they were impressed by both Trump Jr.’s hunting abilities and his willingness to handle the animal’s dead body, were prevented from posing in photographs with Trump Jr. and the argali carcass. Trump Jr. posted nearly two dozen photos of his Mongolian vacation on Instagram in separate posts from August, October and November. One showed him in a yurt, another with a live eagle and a third depicted him riding a Mongolian horse. He did not post any photos of the argali.
Technically, if Junior wanted to bring any of his argalis trophy home with him he would have to “apply for and be granted permission by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.” Of course, there are no records of that and no one knows whether or not Junior did bring anything back with him from his trip to Mongolia. Maybe he brought back a personal thank you and a picture of a person kissing a ring.