Friday, May 16


A woman is suing the Los Angeles Zoo for the pending separation of two female elephants, age 42 and 45, whose breakup she says threatens their welfare, and the Humane Society backs her up. I don't know the specifics of the relationship of these two elephants, but the way humans generally treat elephants doesn't lend much credence to the zoo's claim that they're just doing it for the elephant's own good.

One former circus worker confirms that elephants are universally mistreated within that institution, according to the Christian Science Monitor, "managed by the use of force and intimidation, controlled by bullhooks or worse and used where they will cause the greatest pain. Former animal trainers have admitted that muzzles, whips, electric prods, and even baseball bats are used to tame and train. Newly captured animals are tied down and beaten until they obey." Even then, they don't always perform as advertised: Circus animal trainer John Cuneo knows this as one of his elephants killed its handler in Hawaii and had to be killed by police. Now his farm is charged with 47 violations of the Animal Welfare Act and some are calling for elephants' removal from it. Meanwhile, just for context, in parts of Africa poachers are killing elephants left and right. the latest bunch "mowed down seven elephants including a baby" inside a Ugandan National Park. Africa is where the elephants like Ruby, the African elephant the L.A. Zoo wants to ship out, come from. Do we do them a favor by bringing them out of the fire and into the frying pan?

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