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17 November 2017

If you've read this journal for any length of time, you know how this makes me feel.....

This is sickening -- Trumpís just given the greenlight for bloodthirsty American hunters to murder elephants  in Africa and bring their heads home as trophies.

Trumpís own son shot and mutilated an elephant -- and now heís changed the law so anyone can join the slaughter and bring home elephant body parts as souvenirs, even as ivory poaching threatens to wipe them out.

Letís build a massive global outcry to shame the US into dropping this disgusting plan, and when its huge, Avaaz will work with key African countries to deliver it at a major wildlife protection meeting days away.
Sign the petition to President Trump, the US Fish and Wildlife Service, and conservation authorities around the world:

"Elephants are facing extinction and this is no time to strip them of protection. Trophy hunting drives the slaughter of elephants, increases demand for their body parts, and projects a double standard that makes it harder to tackle ivory poaching. We call on you to do all you can to reverse the US decision to allow the import of elephant trophies, before it is too late."

Many efforts have been made to outlaw hunting elephants for their tusks, but poaching still occurs on a regular basis. It is thought that from 1930-1940 there were 3 to 5 million African elephants roaming the continent. Now in Western Africa elephant populations are counted in the tens or hundreds.  Conservation Int'l estimates that an elephant is killed every 15 minutes....and this is with the international ban in place.

It was a gigantic win when China was convinced to ban ivory.  What will happen now?  Will China decide to follow suit and allow ivory importing again?

Having read many accounts of people who have spent years with elephants and recorded their families in action, this lifting of the ban hurts me personally.  I hate what happens to elephants.  I cheered when the circuses decided to retire their elephants.

We went to the Chicago zoo once and there was one lone elephant (the other two had died) standing in this small cement yard just staring out.  I apologized to her.  She died a couple of years later.

There are two elephants at the Santa Barbara zoo.  A favorite of the kids who visit, but I hate to see them.  Elephants belong in families.  And free.

I've been following stories on the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, the world's most successful elephant rescue and rehabilitation program.  It's wonderful to follow a baby orphaned when his mother is killed for her tusks, to watch that baby bond with the helpers at the orphanage, to watch them create families with the ther orphans, the grow to teenagers and start learning how to live on their own, to watch them finally graduate and become free...and then return in a year or so with a baby in tow to show him/her off.  Wonderfully rewarding.

But what is tragic are the babies who are too traumatized and never get over seeing the slaughter of their mother...and literally die of a broken heart.

Also watching video of the whole group working together to help a baby in trouble is so terribly moving.  And the death rituals of groups of elephants is downright human.  In fact, when you read the observations of these researchers who study elephant behavior you can't help but come to the conclusion that elephants may be the most "human" of any animals.

And now thanks to our glorious leader, people are going to be able to fly to Africa and kill them again to bring their "elephant trophies" home. 

Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of the Humane Society of the United States, told CNN it means "elephants minding their business are going to be gunned down by rich Americans."

I have been so upset by this lifting of the ban, I have been very teary all day.  Not boo hoo crying, but every little thing on TV moves me to tears.

If we didn't have a sociopath in the White House who seems incapable of feeling empathy for anything, we might have a chance of getting the ban put back in place again, but I have little hope.

My grandchildren know elephants.  My great grandchildren may never know an elephant.




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