Wednesday, August 12, 2015

World Elephant Day

Today is “world elephant day.” Knowing it was coming, I thought about what I might do or write here to awaken people to the crisis, the very real possibility that African elephants in the wild may become extinct in our lifetime. I wanted to find just the right argument to dissuade the horrible people who crave ivory, and therefore the horrible poachers who slaughter elephants.

I wanted to stop reading about and seeing photos and videos of orphaned baby elephants, creatures who usually live with their mothers for years, and now are regularly found alone and grieving for their murdered mothers. (One baby, inconsolable, recently just died, despite the care he was getting in a sanctuary. It simply wasn’t enough to make up for his shattered life.)  In many cases, these orphaned babies see their families slaughtered; how can they possibly recover from that?

The truth is, if elephants will be saved from more trauma and possible extinction, it will take much more power (I don’t think mere persuasiveness works here) than I have, or than any single person has. The bracelets saying "burn the ivory" won't make a difference, nor will marches or letters to the editor... or world elephant days.  

Will the mad desire for money, truly the root of all evil, prevail? Will people continue to be heartlessly short-sighted? Will elephants disappear?

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