Posts Tagged With: Chinese

Rhino Horn Cures Asians, But What Cures Ignorance

horn not medicine 1

We’ve seen advertisements and pleas targeting Asian communities to stop using rhino horn.   Famed Chinese NBA player, Yao Ming and Chinese stuntman and actor, Jackie Chan have used their star power to bring awareness to the plight of the rhino in China.

WWF and TRAFFIC are sponsoring adverts being displayed through many different communication channels, including newspapers, television, and social media platforms like Facebook. They have placements in hundreds of offices and residential buildings, airports, corporate offices and universities throughout Vietnam.

But how well is it working? Is anyone out there paying attention?

           China

Journalist Craig Simons who lived in Beijing for eight years wrote about his time there in “The Devouring Dragon”.  Simons says “N.G.O.s (non-government organizations)  have had a limited ability to influence the decisions of average Chinese consumers. Advertisements have been successful but their benefits are offset by millions of Chinese just now becoming rich enough to buy exotic ingredients and medicines.”

He claims the campaigns may ultimately prove more important by putting pressure on the government. “A government ban is more efficient than trying to get 1.3 billion people to change deep-rooted beliefs and traditions, but both are key in the long term.”

jackie with rhino

Jackie Chan with rhino

Vietnam

According to Do Quang Tung, the Vietnam director of CITES  (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora), “Demand for rhino horn in Vietnam has already declined thanks to government’s efforts in raising public awareness and preventing smuggling operations.”

South Africa and Vietnam governments  have signed  a memorandum of understanding on increasing cooperation to prevent smuggling of horns throughout the countries, but a representative from the Vietnam Customs General Department said “Vietnam faces challenges in preventing rhino horn smuggling because of the differences in the laws of the two countries.”

obvious rhino

Cures & Status

Using rhino horn for medicinal “cures” has been going on in China since the 16th century AD. An obvious cultural difference that’s hard to understand when you consider how far western medicine has come. (In the 16th century in Europe, patients who had contracted the bubonic plague were told to perform penance and anesthetic was made from a concoction of lettuce juice and vinegar.)

Yet the place of traditional Chinese medicine has a stronghold on much of the population. So how can truth (via education) overcome tradition?

Perhaps more of an uphill battle is rhino horn being viewed as a symbol of social status. Just as with furs, it’s becoming a mark of affluence in the Vietnamese community.

So how do you combat ego?

Since the beliefs in the power of the horn are based on untruths, and Asian horn-users seem to readily believe the tales as fact, perhaps the answer is to tell equally potent lies. Maybe the truth isn’t what will set the rhino free..

My fellow blogger Fred Clark knows this-
Mayo Study: Rhino-horn extract killed Michael Jackson

Categories: Rhino Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Yao Ming: Making a Difference

At 7ft, 6 in tall, Yao Ming is an intimidating figure, the tallest player in the NBA during his former career with the Houston Rockets. But this gentle giant is spending his time nowadays educating people on the crisis of elephant and rhino poaching.

As a goodwill ambassador to WildAid, he recently teamed up with the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF). They are launching a major public awareness campaign targeting the consumption of rhino horn and ivory, in China. With public service announcements stating “When the buying stops, the killing can too.”

Yao Ming with one of the four remaining Northern White Rhino at Ol Pejeta Conservancy.

Yao Ming with one of the four remaining Northern White Rhino at Ol Pejeta Conservancy.

According to WildAid.Org, in 2012  a Chinese research company did a study  on elephant poaching  finding that:

  •  More than half of the nearly 1,000 participants (over 50%) do not think elephant poaching is common;
  • 34%, or one in three respondents, believe ivory is obtained from natural elephant mortality;
  • Only 33% of all participants believe elephants are poached for their tusks; and
  • 94% of residents agree theChinese government should impose a ban on the ivory trade

A similar survey was also done on rhino poaching:

  • 66% of all participants, that is two out of every three respondents, are not aware that rhino horn comes from poached rhinos;
  • Nearly 50% believed rhino horn can be legally purchased from official stores; and
  • 95% of residents agree the “Chinese government should take stricter action to prevent use of rhino horns.”

Being an animal lover and inspired by Jackie Chan, the Chinese basketball sensation has made raising awareness a top priority. He is a goodwill ambassador and a promising connection between the poaching crisis of Africa and the demand of the Chinese people.

Yao Ming is followed by Kinango, a 2-week-old orphaned elephant whose mother was poached for her ivory, at Daphne Sheldrick's orphanage.

Yao Ming is followed by Kinango, a 2-week-old orphaned elephant whose mother was poached for her ivory, at Daphne Sheldrick’s orphanage.

According to Ming, “The most effective thing you can do to counter this kind of situation is raise people’s awareness. Eliminate the demand for rhino horn and ivory right at the source. That’s what I want to do. It might take some time, sure, but I’m really hoping that gradually we can start to see an improvement.”

“Poaching threatens livelihoods, education, and development in parts of Africa due to the insecurity it brings and loss of tourism revenue. No one who sees the results firsthand, as I did, would buy ivory or rhino horn. I believe when people in China know what’s happening they will do the right thing and say no to these products.”

Ming’s previous campaign to educate the Chinese on the demand of shark fins,  is credited with a reduction of 50 – 70% in consumption of shark fin in China in 2012. We can only hope his current drive to eliminate the demand for horn and tusk is just as effective.

Yao Mings PSA: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10151340496426316

Categories: Making a Difference, Rhino Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

To the Moon

If I had a superpower
I think I’d like to fly.
I’d bring the rhinos to the moon.
I’d plant fields of grass,
make lakes of the craters
where at night they’d all commune.
No more orphans,
huge rhino crashes
with horns taller than the trees.
Poachers out of business,
trade debate moot,
joke’s on the Chinese.
The world would think
them extinct,
another failed conservation endeavor.
While I could finally
sleep soundly at night
knowing the rhino is safe forever.

By: Tisha Wardlow
rhinos on moon 2

Categories: Poetry & Art, Rhino Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

New Feature on my Blog! – Translate my Blog to almost any Language!

Translation

Now you can easily TRANSLATE Fight For Rhinos into various languages with a couples clicks of a button!

Look to your left near the top of any my posts and push the Translation Button to Translate your page to the language you want! You may also go select the Translation Tab near the very Top Right on every page to get there as well.

CHECK IT OUT! And if your language isn’t their please let me know and I will add the appropriate link.  Translation Page

Categories: Rhino Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Who ARE the Bad Guys?

Veterinary team prepares to dehorn a rhino.

Veterinary team prepares to dehorn a rhino.

*Night vision goggles

*Silenced weapons

*Darting equipment

*Bullet proof armour

*Helicopters

With a checklist like this, we could be talking about an army. Yet it is also the equipment used by the modern-day poacher. With the horn fetching more on the black market than cocaine or even gold, everyone wants a piece of the pie. The low-level men who DO the poaching are being funded by higher level organizations with whatever supplies are necessary to bring in the “goods”.

The level of corruption runs far and wide. Militias, rebel groups, intelligence officials, Irish gangsters , Vietnamese diplomats, Chinese scientists, copter pilots, antiques dealers and recently an American rodeo star who used Facebook to find  horns, are all getting their hands dirty with poaching. Even Thai prostitutes and pimps are getting involved. The prostitutes were hired by a criminal syndicate to obtain hunting permits (through some loopholes) and got “professional” hunters to make the kill and bring in the horn.

Of course poverty-stricken villagers often turn to poaching to support their families. A corrupt minority of game farmers, professional hunters, and safari operators are involved as well. But what I believe is the highest level is betrayal is the involvement of veterinarians. 

The veterinarians who work with large mammals have access to M99-a drug that is 1000 times more powerful than morphine. The supply is restricted, and supposedly only accessible by vets. Yet somehow poachers are getting their hands on this potent tranquilizer.

The majority of vets work tirelessly and fervently , giving the victims of poaching round the clock care and treatment to save their lives. Along with the rangers in the anti-poaching units, veterinarians ARE the foot soldiers in this war, an integral part of rhino and elephant survival.  As a former member of a veterinary staff, I know all too well the highs and lows of the job. There is no 9-5, no glory, and certainly not a high level of pay. But where is their passion? Their hearts have hardened, their patients betrayed in the name of greed; an unforgivable evil.

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