It's Time to Accept That Elephants, Like Us, Are Empathetic Beings
Elephants help each other in distress, grieve for their dead, and feel the same emotions as each other—just like us.
Elephants, we all know, are in peril. We humans are waging what amounts to a war against them because they have something we want and cannot make on our own: ivory.
The West African country of Gabon holds most of Africa's remaining forest elephants. Their main stronghold, Minkebe National Park and its surrounding buffer zone, was home to an estimated 28,500 elephants in 2004. By 2012 the number had plummeted to about 7,000—a loss of 20,000 or more elephants.
People are shooting, poisoning, and spearing the animals at such a rate across the continent that some scientists already consider them "ecologically extinct." There are now fewer than 500,000 wild African elephants—maybe no more than half that number—and barely 32,000