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ELEPHANTS TODAY, DOGS TOMORROW
Barbara J. Andrews, Publisher TheDogPlace.org
Circus elephants have thrilled us for over a century and in 2021, thanks to animal rights, they are permanently retired - or worse. The implications are chilling.
Sure, you don't own an elephant and probably only remember them from your long-ago circus visits. The only place you will see a real elephant today is on TV, in a zoo or one of the few remaining wildlife parks.
The elephant is no longer important but what is, is how this momentous moment in history affects you and your family. Take a deep breath and think about this... Asian elephants have served mankind for over 4,400 years in India and what is now Pakistan.
Longer than any other species on earth with the exception of the dog and possibly the donkey.
Elephants carried our burdens (and our warriors) long before there was a horse and buggy. Even in modern times, elephants were a link in our military supply lines during the Vietnam War in the 1960s.
And yet... both the African and the Indian elephant have been added to the Endangered Species Act.. There are less than 50,000 elephants in all of Asia and India even though they are still used in logging and have become very popular in the tourist industry.
In case you're wondering, the African elephant is a different "breed" than an Asian elephant (pictured below) and does not have the temperament suited for working with and for human beings.
Elephants that have fascinated circus-goers since our great-grandparents were children are being officially retired. Thankfully, circus elephants went to the resplendent Ringling Brothers Barnum And Bailey elephant facility in Central Florida. They will be well cared for health-wise but what about emotionally?
Emotionally... as a dog owner you know exactly what we're talking about. If your dog were suddenly ripped away from you and given to another loving family, it would still be a severe emotional trauma. So certainly you cannot think it would be less traumatic for a more intelligent and equally social elephant to be ripped away from her friends (assuming she isn't the only elephant there...) separated from her trainer and her circus or daily routine.
What is it that motivates the elephant to serve something as physically puny as a human? One swipe of that powerful trunk could kill a human. Even a wild (cow) elephant has some uncanny built-in restraint against harming a human.
You know animals, you decide. In India the work elephant is raised by her young mahout, they are like siblings. They literally grow up together and she and her mahout work together for life.
Ethnologists would say that the Indian elephant was created (or evolved) to serve mankind. It is one of only two species on this earth that is inextricably bonded to mankind. The other is your dog.
In India the elephant works in the timber industry, carries heavy loads, and transports people. Will the circus elephant miss the work, glamour, excitement - and the moment when an enthralled child reaches out to touch her trunk? Will she miss her purpose in life? Will she miss the glamour and clamor, the excitement of performing, of doing something useful?
Think. Your dog is emotionally rewarded, feels pride, and self-worth when he works livestock, guides his blind owner, protects his family, or simply learns a new trick. Do you really think that elephants, the most intelligent creatures on Earth after man, don't feel the same sense of being complete by doing what they have done for centuries? Those who know them both will agree "The relationship, the bond, it's in their DNA."
While you're thinking about the ancient and extraordinary relationship between the Indian Elephant and the people it serves, you will have to consider the dog and all the incredible things dogs do for people around the world. You see them as hunting companions, putting food on the table, pulling sleds, packing loads, comforting the sick, delighting the young, and always, guarding our camp. OK, so are you getting an uncomfortable feeling about how long that will last?
Good. Because even if you never touched an elephant or looked into her eyes, you are getting the point.
It is absolutely INCONCEIVABLE that a small but radical political group could change the history of mankind and actually shift the balance of nature.
We understand. This is something that occurs outside of the scope of your daily life, and has not affected your innate quest for food and shelter, so you don't think about "animal rights".
But think back to when you were a child, one who stood in awe of the circus elephant, or when as a parent you held your child so he or she could toss peanuts to the elephant.
In your lifetime, all that is gone as of May 2016. Now look down at the dog snoozing by your feet. He or she waits patiently for some way to help you, to make you laugh, to lighten your load - or your mood. That is why the dog and the elephant exist. No matter whether you believe in Creation or Evolution, it all works perfectly. Until now.
What are your feelings on this? See 2017 announcement, Circus Killed By Animal Rights
Copyright ? May 2016 TheDogPlace.org 21073 https://www.thedogplace.org/Terrorists/Elephants-Today-Dogs-Tomorrow-1651-bj.asp
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