The March for Elephants

Gina LeDonne

Recently, I was in New York City for a concert. I was sitting in Times Square with a friend and a cup of Tasti D’Lite—we were trying to kill time before the show. Suddenly, I heard the trumpeting of elephants and up on the jumbo-tron was a dynamic ad for the “March for Elephants”. http://www.marchforelephants.org

The March for Elephants is a charity walk  to promote keeping elephants from extinction. I was so excited to see an issue relating to animal rights highlighted in such a huge way.

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I didn’t know very much about the treatment of these majestic animals before the topic of Circus Animals came up in my Animal Law class, nor did I realize just what kind of danger they are in.  In class, we discussed how social elephants are, and how, like people, elephants need their mothers well into their young lives. Very sadly, elephants are being hunted for their valuable ivory tusks; because of this, babies are separated from their mothers, and, all are in danger.

In their native countries, elephants are poached and hunted for their ivory tusks, but in our country, we are still not valuing and respecting elephants as we should.

They are kept in pens most of their lives with little time to move around.  In the wild, elephants can walk 3-15 miles per day, but, when used in entertainment, elephants may take only mere steps. To work towards turning this treatment around, an elephant sanctuary has been established in Tennessee! See here: http://www.elephants.com/faq.php

The elephant sanctuary takes in elephants retired from zoos and circuses.

Still, elephant treatment is certainly an issue that should be noticed, as elephant endangerment threatens the future generations of children from knowing the scale and regal nature of these animals.

For more about elephants’ lives and how to help:

http://www.iworry.org

For a notable example of the scale and severity of elephant poaching: http://www.cnn.com/2013/09/25/world/africa/zimbabwe-elephant-poaching/index.html]

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