Thursday, February 14, 2008

Elephant Teenage Pregnancy

There is a "Jumbo" outrage in Australia regarding an elephant's teenage pregnancy. Apparently, she is only 9 and according to Erica Marting of the International Fund for Animal Welfare, this is like allowing your 12 year old daughter to get pregnant.

Here's the thing.

I find zoo's generally upsetting places. I realize that a lot of them are working towards animal conservation and a lot of them are make grand efforts to make the enclosures habitable and as close to the natural habitat as possible, however places like the San Francisco Zoo or worse, the Santa Barbara Zoo leave it quite obvious that the animals are completely bored and have had their lives stolen from them so that people can stare at them all day long. They resort to eating their own shit and pulling their hair out.


Erica Martin is missing a large chunk of information here. Sexually mature 12 year old humans are totally capable of mating and breeding, just as sexually mature 9 year old elephants apparently are. She might find the idea abhorrent but that doesn't make it physically harmful. I think the world is a better place for one more elephant being brought into it and she shouldn't be anthropomorphizing - Thong Dee gets enough of that being stared at all day long.

The reason why it's such a tragedy for a 12 year old human to have a child is that our society is not equipped for these things and modern 12 year olds are not emotionally equipped. Our bodies certainly are - I've talked to ob/gyns that find it a crying shame how easy it is to deliver babies to teenage mums, we're supposed to start giving birth at a young age, no matter how horrifying that thought may be.

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