Carole Baskin became a household name thanks to “Tiger King”
This year, Netflix introduced the world to Joseph Maldonado-Passage, AKA Joe Exotic, in the docu-series Tiger King: murder, chaos and madness. The show centered around the feuds Maldonado-Passage had with various tiger owners, including Baskin.
King tiger Baskin’s Big Cat Rescue pointed out, but focused on his relationship with Don Lewis. In 1997 Lewis disappeared under mysterious circumstances. Today, Maldonado-Passage and the Lewis family are convinced that Baskin has something to do with Lewis’ disappearance.
In the docu-series, Baskin explained how Lewis was in a questionable mental state when he disappeared. After five years, Lewis was pronounced dead. To this day, her family are still searching for answers regarding her disappearance.
At the “DWTS” premiere, the Lewis family aired an ad asking “Who Murdered Don Lewis?”
Today, there is no evidence to support Maldonado-Passage’s claim that Baskin killed Lewis and fed him tigers. Despite the number of times Baskin has refuted her involvement in her disappearance, some people still believe she had something to do with it – including the Lewis family.
At the premiere of Dancing with the starsLewis’s daughters, Gale, Lynda and Donna, paid to run an ad asking for information about their missing father. Her former assistant, Anne, also called for justice in the ad.
Baskin was aware of the announcement, but chose to focus on his dancing instead. She wants to use her notoriety to raise awareness about the Big Cat Act, but Lewis’s disappearance remains linked to her image.
Carole Baskin still gets calls in the middle of the night from viewers who “hate” her
Lewis’s disappearance isn’t the only thing that has followed Baskin since King tiger. Many people who saw the documentary still don’t understand the difference between Big Cat Rescue, private possession, and zoos. These are the people who call Baskin in the middle of the night to express their hatred.
“Most people who still call me and wake me up in the middle of the night to tell me how much they hate me after watching King tiger hate me [because] we have tigers in cages, ”Baskin explained. ” [These callers also hate] that we are against breeding when the tiger is so close to extinction.
According to Baskin, these callers misunderstand how breeding tigers will do nothing to stop their extinction. “It actually causes their extinction,” she said.
Always looking on the bright side, Baskin says receiving these hate calls is a good thing. “The good news is that all this warmth and vitriol that I received as a result of King tiger mostly comes from people who actually agree with our point of view, ”she added. “They just don’t know it, but once we teach them why we have to stop captive breeding to save [the tigers], then they become among the greatest defenders.
Baskin hopes his appearance on Dancing with the stars will allow him to educate viewers about Big Cat Rescue.