The Elephant Whisperer
12th November, 2005
Lek lives in Thialand. She saves Thai elephants. Now, thanks to a clumsy campaign launched by animal rights activists in American all her work is at risk
A lot of people, animal rights people, tell me, as if they feel their position to be morally unassailable, that they prefer animals to humans. I go one better. I prefer animals to animal rights activists.
For some, animals represent a safe, non-betraying, painless, simple and, let’s face it, boring target for their love. ‘So you love animals more than people?’ I used to say. ‘How would you feel about your daughter marrying one?’ And then I met Lek.
Lek (real name Sangduen Chailert) loves elephants with a passion. She manages to do this without hating people, and someone who loves elephants in Thailand has good reason to hate at least some people. You might ﬁnd yourself hating some people when you read on and ﬁnd out what they do to elephants. Lek’s love of elephants has certainly opened her up to being hurt and her love could be described as neither simple nor boring.
She also loves people. She spends her day touring the mountain villages and giving inoculations and wormings to children. And saving elephants. And raising money to do all this. And campaigning. And tending to elephants. And doctoring sick elephants. And shovelling elephant dung....
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