Monday, September 11, 2006

The Elephant Massacre

My Monday morning began with this:

Elephant Massacre Revealed in Chad

Seeing those pictures just made me sick in the stomach.

So many elephants, just gone in a flash. All because of human greed.

I am not a person who will go to the extreme like PETA, being an animal activist, or a vegan for that matter. If chickens are meant to be reared for consumption, then as long as it is sustainable, I would think it’s ok to consume chicken and eggs.

Wildlife, however, is the different story. If these animals are not meant to be domisticated or reared commercially, there has to be a reason why. When a particular animal goes extinct, chances is that it is due to human inteference. When there is demand for the animal, chances that there will be people bound to hunt it down, all for the sake of a quick profit. Who in the world said that tiger parts is an aphrodisiac? Or the same for a bear paw? Even though it is all true (if ever), it will not be sustainable because this can't be cultivated commercially.

The turtles are going extinct due to demands for its eggs. It's already bad enough it has to face the dangers in the seas, what more people consuming its eggs. Chances of survival for baby turtles is already quite bad, what more then by consuming the eggs, one is just reducing their chances of survival. Would a rhino horn make a difference to someone's sex life for that matter? Would a dried seahorse do anything better for your health?

Another reason is due to habitat loss. This is harder to control,as the human population keep on growing. Sometimes they just need to find more land to develop, and there's when animals will have a problem trying to find a new home. There was a big hoo-hah last time when Tigers were spotted in Jeli, and the PAS government's instruction was (surprise,surprise) to shoot the tigers. Then whataboue those cases where huge resorts wanted to be build over islands that were supposed to be coral and turtle sanctuaries? Seriously, our ministers need to have at least some certificate in environmental studies before they can even qualify to be ministers in the first place. Then, there's the illegal logging, an irresponsible action to the natural habitat of countless animals. Again - there is a problem with sustainability, and greed is the main factor.

I also believe that animals should be treated with some sort of humanity. The elephants above have been brutally hacked to death, all just for their tasks. I have also seen footages of people hammering seal cubs and turtles to death when they surfaced from the waters. Sun bears are usually captured and kept in tiny cages to extract bile. These animals usually just go crazy. There's also one reason why I will never eat Foie Gras, as the ducks are basically force-fed corn boiled with fat (to facilitate ingestion)so their liver will be fattened, and then killed for consumption. The process of coming up with delicacy is just very sick indeed. There have been rumours of how cruel animals such as chickens and cows are killed prior to processing but I'm not sure how true is all this.

Is there hope for the animals? There's only that much I can do by not endorsing certain products such as ivory, and not eating Foie Gras or Gui Ling Gao 龜苓膏 (Still trying to stop eating sharkfin soup though.) I also try to educate my family, but my parents doesn't really seemed to care. In fact I've gotten a scolding for supporting WWF instead of some charity for people! My boyfriend suggested I throw some nuclear bombs to reduce population, but I don't think it's the population that matters, more of the demand/supply issue.

However, I've also met people who has the same cause, and we try to create more awareness, which is a good thing. Some people may say, "Does is make a difference?" I'm only one person over a hundred million more people who would probably just continue their consumption. To me, this is a personal matter, a personal choice. At least I can say I am not part of those who contributed to another animal being wiped out from this planet.

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