Time For a Life Change
After reading Carl Safina's description of elephant behavior in Ambolesi Park in Kenya-- the concerned mothers, the lost children, the playful loose-limbed clowning, the heroic matriarchs and the self-centered egoists, the mourning of the dead, the memory and associations with a loved elephant's remains, the medical maneuvers (removing darts and spears from a fellow elephant) with a dextrous trunk, the "discussions" about when to leave a place, and the variety of sounds and greetings in general that the elephants use to communicate, and the overall empathy and emotion these creatures show for one another (and occasionally to humans) I have made a major life decision: no more poaching . . . I am quitting cold turkey, and I hope people around the world read his book Beyond Words: What Animals Think and Feel and do likewise; I know it will be tough to quit, and I'll probably gain some weight, and I'll certainly miss the thrill of bringing down something the size of a dinosaur and the money I earned selling contraband ivory-- $1500 dollars a pound for that stuff-- but that's it, I'm done, I quit, no more poaching for me . . . plus this whole "fake tusk" sting operation has made me paranoid . . . anyway, if I can quit poaching cold turkey, then maybe you can too . . . give it a try and see how it feels, and I realize some of you are poaching simply to put food on the table, while I use the money to buy ocelot pants and crocodile skin boots, so perhaps it's wrong of me to inflict my morality on you, but that's a whole other can of worms for another day.