Comparative Psychological Criminal Profile of Walter Palmer and Robert Hansen

Although one never saw the light of day again (former bakery-shop owner Hansen died in an Alaskan prison in 2014) and one may never see the inside of a courtroom, there are numerous similarities between serial killer/trophy hunter Robert Hansen and dentist/trophy hunter Walter Palmer:

  • Both were family men, well-liked and successful in small business
  • Both were avid sport hunters (though thus far Dr. Palmer‘s chosen “trophies” were taken only from the legal, non-human side of the imaginary great divide that separates worthy life forms from fair “game.”)
  • Both “sportsmen” Walter Palmer and Robert Hansen enjoyed the challenge of bow hunting (presumably to prolong the agony for their prey)
  • Both needed to constantly to refresh their “trophies” in an obsessive effort to boost their flagging self-esteems (after all, how much macho pride can be derived from being a baker…or a dentist?)
  • Both serial killers objectified and thought nothing of the lives or the suffering of their many innocent victims, whom they failed to recognize as vastly superior in intrinsic value
  • Conversely, perhaps they did recognize their value and envied them for it
  • When accused, neither apologized to those whom their crimes affected, but instead cared only of how the accusations affected them
  • Both were narcissistic psychopaths
  • Both deserve whatever punishment they got or eventually get

Whether or not he broke enough hunting laws to warrant extradition back to Zimbabwe for a trial is all that seems to matter to Dr. Palmer. The fact that Cecil had a name and a radio tracking collar didn’t help the doctor’s legal case. But as with any psychopathic serial killer, his overwhelming sense of entitlement keeps him from seeing the fundamental wrong in his murderous ways.


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6 thoughts on “Comparative Psychological Criminal Profile of Walter Palmer and Robert Hansen

  1. What I don’t like it the ‘normal’ tone his interview tries to establish – as if snuffing out the life of a beautiful animal means nothing next to his right to kill and have a trophy of him, and why anyone would find it troubling. This collection of videos has a wonderful one of Cecil magnificent roar. I hope the rest of us get to hear it one day, before the trophy hunters destroy them all for their own selfish needs, whatever they may be.

    Anyway, he was greeted by protesters (“We will not falter! Extradite Walter!). Gotta love ’em.

  2. The special mark of these serial killers is that very calm, normal tone of voice when speaking of their victims. Whether Ted Bundy or Palmer, its the same, and we know that most serial killers like Bundy were also torturing/killing animals early on. Chilling. Our society really seems to encourage such terror.

  3. I thought the same thing of Palmer’s interview. Of course, it may have sounded flat because he rehearsed his excuses in his head so often. However, people like Hansen and Palmer may just be flat emotionally generally and only really come to life when their face-to-face with death. Not their death, of course. It is striking how that chasm, that gulf that we have rationalized between human beings and all other creatures blinds us to the ugly character of the hunters and allows us to view them and their killings as normal.

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