By Sean Whyte, Jennifer Yeap [Letter to Editor\
Elephants deserve our respect and not to be abused. Do you agree?
Over the last two weeks we have submitted several reports and photographs to Perhilitan illustrating our serious concern over the way elephants are kept in zoos and wildlife parks.
Perhilitan have not yet responded to the reports. If the past is anything to go by, they probably never will.
When you see elephants being used to carry people, paint pictures, dance to music or stand on concrete chained by one or more legs all day all day long, will you please give some thought to how the elephants feel?
These remarkable animals have no say in how they are used or abused. Like all animals confined against their will in zoos and parks, elephants depend on people to take care of and respect them.
Dr N Baskaran, professor at AVC College of Wildlife in Tamil Nadu, India says, “Elephants are the most emotional and intelligent animals. They express both sadness and happiness and in some cases may have welling of water in their eyes as a response to the emotion. They explicitly convey their emotions and stopping eating food is one of the signs.”
If you care (who doesn’t?) about elephants we hope this letter will help you see their treatment in captivity for what it is - commercial exploitation; not education, and definitely nothing to do with conservation.
Until Perhilitan, zoos and wildlife parks, understand cruelty to animals is unacceptable and unnecessary, the best thing you, a concerned individual, can do, is to stay away from them. All they want and care about is your money. They have had four years to upgrade and comply with the law but progress is painfully slow.
We would like to let the late Mahatma Ghandi have the last word, “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way it treats its animals.”