Trump Administration Overturns Elephant Trophy Ban

On November 16th, 2017, Donald Trump and his administration made the decision to lift the ban on bringing elephant “trophies” into the United States.  Elephants are currently protected under the Endangered Species Act, however, since the ban was lifted, imports of these “trophies” are allowed into the States.  The United States agency states, “...such hunts can be beneficial for the species by bringing money to local communities and providing incentives to conserve elephants.”  I personally doubt that by being able to hunt these gentle giants would do everything but help conserve them.  If anything, it will only promote hunting them and may even cause them to go extinct if this continues.  

Ellen Degeneres had no hesitation to talk about this issue. Whether you’re an Ellen fan or not, the speech she gave was compelling.  She states, “by lifting the ban he is encouraging Americans to kill elephants.”  I’m pretty sure at one point she had to choke back some tears and while I was watching the episode I started crying myself.  Being totally honest, when I heard the news I cried, not only because they’re my favorite animal, but because they show compassion, sympathy, social intelligence, and self-awareness.  Ellen then proceeds to explain how they have a fabulous memory and explains how they follow the same migration path every year.  That to me is amazing because half the time I can’t even remember where I put my books from the day before.  Not only do they have amazing memories, but they are beautiful creatures who are thoughtful, majestic, and intelligent.  The hashtag “#BeKindToElephants” was started by Ellen, and for everyone who retweeted it and used the hashtag they would donate to the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust to help protect elephants.  

I could go on and on about how great elephants are, but I believe what else is extremely upsetting is that Donald Trump’s sons are both big game hunters.  For those of you that don’t know, big game hunters are people that hunt large animals for sport.  Yes, that’s actually a thing, as nauseating as it is people do these things to animals for fun and are actually proud of killing such beautiful animals.  Animals that will probably show much more compassion and sympathy than not only some people, but definitely more than Trump and his two sons.  At the end of the day I will always choose animals over people because clearly some can’t understand that animals have every right to be on this Earth just like the rest of us.  I was not only devastated, but infuriated by the news when I remembered that his sons hunted these animals.  There are photos of his sons standing over the animals they killed and have a smile of great pride on their faces.  There’s also a photo of one of his sons holding the tail of an elephant that he had just killed which makes me want to throw up just thinking about it.  

When it was reported that the Trump Administration was going to lift the ban, they instantly received backlash against animal rights groups and even some celebrities.  Since the administration received such harsh backlash so quickly they had to basically backpedal and rethink their actions.  

As I stated earlier, elephants are majestic creatures and the thought of this country allowing bits and pieces of them into the country is nauseating.  We need animals in the world in order for the human species to survive.  Sure, right now it might not seem that important but, what happens fifty years down the road when animals start going extinct from other reasons such as climate change on top of people being able to hunt them?  We need to protect animals now so that we can have a future.