Target: Xi Jinping, President of China
Goal: Stop the torture and murder of bears for their paws
Many people are familiar with cruel animal farming practices still tolerated around the world such as bear bile farming, tiger farming, and the dog and cat meat industries. A lesser-known and no less horrifying practice has grown in recent years. The extremely lucrative bear paw industry involves the torture and killing of endangered bears for their body parts to be used in meals like ‘bear paw soup.’
The industry is prevalent in many Asian countries such as China, North and South Korea, Japan, Laos, Cambodia and more. As with many rare and exotic animals bears are seen as symbols of power. Some people believe that consuming parts of the bear will endow them with the creatures’ vigor. Despite the fact that this claim is bogus the unbelievably barbaric practice continues. Many bears are beaten (as the adrenaline rush caused by the pain supposedly makes the meat more tender) and their paws guillotined, often while they are still breathing. The rest of the bear is prepared for eating by lowering it into a pot and cooking it alive, assuming it hasn’t already died of its wounds.
As if the pain of this torture weren’t unbearable enough, species like the sun bear and Asiatic black bear are coming dangerously close to extinction thanks to hunters looking to profit from their suffering. Bear paws often sell for $100 per kilogram (2.2. pounds), and desperate or simply greedy the hunters have no concern for declining bear populations.
We must petition China, among the most powerful countries in Asia, to take a leadership role in ending this horrendous industry. Save Asia’s bears from unfathomable pain and anguish, and help keep threatened bear species from fading into extinction.
Dear President Jinping,
After reading of the horrors of the bear paw industry, prevalent in many Asian countries including your own, I must write to persuade you to put an end to its horrific practices.
Bears in Asia are not only farmed for their bile–another cruel and lucrative industry–but also their paws. Bear paws are especially popular in soup, as some people believe that by consuming the paws they will be imbued with the powers the bears possess.
The bears have their paws guillotined (often while alive) after being beaten severely to cause an adrenaline rush intended to tenderize the meat. After enduring this excruciating pain the bears are then lowered into boiling water and cooked alive.
Sir, this torture must stop. Not only is it barbaric and incredibly cruel, but it is also contributing to the extinction of species like the sun bear and Asiatic black bear. The bear paw industry does nothing but line the pockets of greedy hunters who have no regard for the suffering of these magnificent animals.
Please save bears from needless deaths in China, and use your influence in Asia to persuade other countries to ban the industry in their own homelands. You have the power to help prevent Asia’s rare and precious bears from becoming only be a memory.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Dan Bennett via Wikimedia