On Maali the Elephant: Deconstructing PETA’s Arguments, Piece by Piece
“Just a note: we have received a warning from Facebook that they want us to DELETE the post (see below) refuting the arguments of PETA because they claim it violates community standards. That is CENSORSHIP. The truth needs to be told, irrespective of whether or not PETA agrees with it. [Share this and help spread the truth!] They want to abuse us and say all kinds of things, but they are hurt when their arguments are refuted? NEVER!”
– The We Love Maali Facebook Page
For 10 years now, photographer and advocate John Chua has been one of the special caretakers of Manila Zoo’s most famous resident, Maali. Today, as the zoo celebrates its 52nd anniversary, it also celebrates this special bond between man and beast.
By JOHN K. CHUA
July 25, 2011, 12:30 PM
MANILA, Philippines — I am a photographer and I would rather have my photos speak for themselves, but I need to tell Maali’s story.
PETA does not even care enough to spell the elephant-they’re-using‘s name right! It’s “Maali,” with two A’s and not “Mali”. In Filipino, the word “mali” simply means “WRONG”. If PETA can’t get basic facts right, such as a name, then it has no business talking about Maali at all.
PETA resorts to publicity stunts (cheap and crude tactics, if you ask me) which in truth are manipulative, self-serving campaigns and outright lies to deceive the public. These “strategies” exploit human emotion in order to gain blind support and solicited funds that will never be used to actually help Maali. Has there been any published report to show where ALL the money given to PETA “for Maali” actually goes? If you were born yesterday, then you’re easily made into yet another pawn to help PETA squeeze support and more money from more people that it will likely just spend on itself, its people, and on yet more campaigns to keep the money coming in. It’s an organization that thrives on your “donations”.
If one were to have a bullshit translator, PETA’s campaign to “Save Maali” in truth would probably say something along the lines of, Give us your money (tax-free!) and help us get more people to give us money. We will spend it to keep our organization afloat and pay for more campaigns. None of it will ever actually be spent on Maali nor her needs. All your donations are belong to us.
TL;DR? Click an update below:
By Kathy Chua-Grimme
Three reasons why Maali should stay and if she’s forced to go, why they should start by helping here.
- Maali’s home is here, Maali’s heart is here.
This is the only life Maali has ever known, and she’s surrounded by people who love her. With the right enrichment programs, it is possible to keep her happy in Manila Zoo. Moving her to a sanctuary will not guarantee her happiness. She was bullied by other elephants when she was younger and may still be bearing psychological scars from those encounters.
While it is true that most elephants are herd animals, they can also form bonds with non-elephants. They’ve been known to also be attached to their mahoots (caregivers) and pine away when separated. Maali has formed very strong bonds here – and separating her from them can be devastating for her.
Elephants have their own personalities, histories and quirks making them as diversely unique as people. She loves the interaction and socialization she gets from meeting zoo visitors – it has been an integral part of her life. Other animals have been “freed” and have died miserably because people refused to look at them as individuals and instead boxed them in with the stereotypes of their wild counterparts.
Free Maali from PETA
Please help Free Maali from PETA and sign the online petition! Please re-post.