A Rant and a Plea: Stop the Madness

Giraffe put down at Copenhagen Zoo

Giraffe put down at Copenhagen Zoo

More and more, as I hear stories on the news, read posts on social media or receive letters from the charities I support, I am disgusted to be part of the human race. It feels like the world has gone mad. Except it’s only that I hear more about it now. The awful thing is that it’s nothing new. But it has to stop. Here is just a selection of the horrific stories in my Facebook newsfeed today; the mere tip of the melting iceberg.

Copenhagen Zoo killing a young giraffe, skinning it and feeding it to the lions, in front of children, when another zoo had offered to rehome it, because it’s not genetically strong (one of 20-30 animals put down at Copenhagen zoo each year.)

Slaughtering families of dolphins in Taiji, Japan, even though evidence suggests they’re probably as intelligent as we are (more so, I reckon).

The so-called protectors of the Great Barrier Reef giving permission to dredge the sea bed and dump 3m cubic metres of dredged mud in its waters.

In its ruling on Friday, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, an environmental watchdog, said the approval was in line with its view that port development along the reef’s coastline should be limited to existing ports.

Hundreds of rangers killed trying to protect nature’s most endangered animals, as an average of three rhinos are killed a day.

  • Rhino poaching increased by over 7,500% between 2007-13, with an average of three killed a day.
  • There are more captive tigers in the US than there are left in the wild
  • Since 2004, Central Africa has lost two-thirds of its elephant population.
  • At least 1,000 park rangers have been killed in 35 different countries over the last decade alone as they work to protect wildlife.
Trying to make a difference

Trying to make a difference

No wonder my daughter woke up from a nightmare, in inconsolable tears, worrying about the bears, after learning about the destruction of the Giant Panda’s natural habitat at school. She’s five and already she cares more than most people I know. Over breakfast we sponsored a Giant Panda through WWF and it felt like a tiny spec of dust taking on a tsunami. But maybe her taking the certificate (and cuddly toy) into school for show and tell help spread the word a tiny bit.

We are parasites, The Matrix had it right. The more I watch Cbeebies programes with my children – Octonauts, Tinger Tinger Tales, 64 Zoo Lane – that celebrate the wondrous diversity of the world on land and in the oceans, the more I am sickened by the knowledge that we destroy the world around us in our arrogance, ignorance and greed.

In this time of social media we need to make a change for good. So, please, I beg you, sign the online petitions, spread the word. Save the future for your children, before seeing animals put down in zoos, or dolphins performing tricks at Sea World, or documentaries on their 40″ TVs, is the closest they’ll ever get to the wonder of the living world.