Target: Jacob Zuma, President of South Africa
Goal: Establish a new ban on the rhino horn trade in South Africa.
Buying and selling rhino horns is now legal in South Africa, thanks to a decision by the country’s highest court of appeals. While rhinos do not have to be killed for their horns, they are raised on farms like cattle and periodically anesthetized so their horns can be harvested. The world’s only buyers of rhino horn are people in East Asian countries who think rhino horn can cure headaches and cancer, though there is no medical evidence to suggest this is true. Rhinos are kept as farm animals and have their horns cut off for no reason other than to make a profit.
Rhinos are endangered. They should be allowed to live freely in the wild, not be kept as livestock. Rhino horn farmers claim they are saving rhinos, but it is not possible to protect a species and at the same time harvest its body parts for profits.
The international trade of rhino horns is still illegal, but according to National Geographic the legalization of rhino horn trading in South Africa is bound to increase rhino horn production and smuggling to other countries. The South African government can still stop the trade of rhino horns. Since the high court did not rule that the trade ban itself was unconstitutional, only that the way it was passed was illegal, the South African government can pass a new ban on selling rhino horn. Sign the petition below to encourage South Africa to protect rhinos and crack down on rhino horn smuggling.
Dear President Zuma,
As you already know, the highest appeals court of South Africa recently ruled against the government and struck down a ban on the rhino horn trade. This decision is extremely disheartening, as it will allow farmers to confine endangered animals as livestock and cut their horns off to make a profit.
Please do not let this court ruling discourage you from protecting rhinos. The government of South African can still protect rhinos by passing a new law that reaches a compromise with the plaintiff in this lawsuit. A potential solution would be to allow the plaintiff, Mr. Hume, to sell the rhino horn he has already stockpiled, and institute a ban on any additional rhino horn harvesting. The government can also crack down on rhino horn smuggling, which remains illegal under international law.
Please do not give up on protecting rhinos. They are a valuable species that should not be exploited for their body parts.
[Your Name Here]
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