Why elephants? The answer is Ivory. In the 1970's one thousand nine hundred (1900!!) elephants were slaughtered in Kenya for their tusks and in the 80's 8300 were slaughtered. In 1990 the CITES ban was put in effect.
But poaching still continues today. Why? Because poachers only make $1000 a year and one elephant can bring them $3600. Why? Because China and Japan and other uneducated or uninterested counties sell ivory. Why? Money. Greed. Indifference.
Who buys it - our next door neighbor, a tourist, a collector. Because it's rare, because it's beautiful, because they can. The situation is dire with elephants racing towards extinction. You can make a difference. Please, you must make a difference.
Most of us cannot head out to Africa and stand in front of the poachers protecting these poor creatures, most of us can't travel to washington to lobby for these magnificent animals, but all of us can spread the word. We can sign the petition to ban ivory trade http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/233/178/753/
We can beware of what we buy- do not buy or support anyone who sells ivory - http://www.worldwildlife.org/what/globalmarkets/wildlifetrade/buyersbeware.html
We can donate, join, read, email others, buy presents from, write about, etc. the organizations that work to make sure that the only place your grandchildren don't see an elephant is in a book.
Together we CAN make a difference - let's make sure the picture of elephants that we see in our future is the one below.