The article "African Elephants To Remain Protected By International Treaty," March 13, was highlighted by a very dramatic photo depicting the burning of a massive elephant tusk stockpile in the Nairobi National Park in Kenya, demonstrating Kenya's opposition to the ivory trade.
The Kenya government misleads the international public by trying to play on emotion rather than intellect.
Elephant depletion in Kenya did not result from blind capitalism, but rather from lack of monies needed to train and hire more qualified regulatory agents. These funds could be provided by sales of elephant parts on an international market.
Through a policy of selective killing, the Kenyan government would not only ensure a healthy and replenished elephant herd, but also would provide additional revenue for the state.
Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, and Malawi have agreed to estabish a South African Centre for Ivory Marketing (SACIM). Kenya seems out of step with other African countries.
In order to reap the benefits the elephants have to offer, Kenya officials need to reassess their stance on ivory trade and consider the economic - as well as the emotional - arguments that have been presented. J. Paul Mansell, Russellville, Ala.
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