We’re going to get you simba, we’re going to get you! MUHAHAHA, MUHAHAHAH, MUHAHAHA!
December 17, 2005 14 Comments
“This is the plan: we will import 135 wild animals from Kenya, or 98% of the total, thus leaving behind only 3 old lions. Then we ship our haul to Bangkok where we will hang them from the rafters and slowly stick hot pins into their paws while depriving them of sleep. We’re going to get you simba, we’re going to get you! MUHAHAHA, MUHAHAHAH, MUHAHAHA!”
Forget corruption, forget political murders, tsunamis and terrorist bombings, there is a new scourge in Kenya: animals are suffering. The speak-to-power members of our ‘civil society’ are as ever ready to step to the breach and put a stop to injustice wherever it rears its ugly head. Word on the street is that in the past few months there have been night vigils held outside Hotel Intercontinental in Nairobi to protest against the sending of Kenyan wildlife to Thailand. Those Thais, you just know that they spend most of their time in Bangkok twirling their little brown thumbs and laughing maniacally as they invent unusual new tortures. Their record speaks for itself. In August 2004, for instance, there was an international uproar – at least among animal welfare groups – when 3 out of 115 orangutans died of pneumonia in a Bangkok zoo. Earlier, 32 ‘frightened, wide-eyed baby orangutans, many hugging each other’ were found in the same ‘cramped private Thai zoo’ (see story here). The zoo owners have much to answer for. There were clearly Crimes Against Primates being carried out on the premises. It might even have been that the 32 babies were being raised to become fighters in Bangkok’s famous orangutan boxing. The cruelty. Oh, the sheer mad, evil genius of it all.
They came to Nairobi in November to hoodwink us. Taking time off from his busy schedule of trying to deal with a small constitutional matter, declining national life expectancy, hunger, terrorist attacks, widespread crime, official corruption and a failed state just north of the border, our president took time to engage in the sophisticated arena of international geopolitics. Signing a solemn Memorandum of Understanding with Thai Prime Minister Thaskin Shinawatra, President Kibaki earned Kenya a cool 80 million shillings in return for sending the wild animals to a private zoo in Thailand. What was Mr. Shinawatra thinking? I mean c’mon. Clearly, his ambassador to Nairobi had not informed him that MOUs are really not the way to go in State House. But that is a matter for another discussion.
I demand that we require the Thais to sign and ratify the UN Convention Against Torture before Kenya sends animals to them. We do not want any more Abu Ghraibs after all. Imagine, if you have the courage, what fiendish plots our elands, dik dik and hippos could be subjected to. It makes me quail, yet I want to be true to my optimistic nature.
I have a dream that one day my nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all elephants, orangutans and little black boys are created equal.” I have a dream that one day on the pavements of the Intercontinental, a great cause shall come to fruition: that the bad people who like doing bad things to wildlife will stop and be good and do good things. I have a dream that one day, one day, that I too shall drive a four wheel drive jeep to the national park, and that there, waiting with open arms, will be a Maasai warrior who shall join with me in sustainably loving nature. From the slopes of Mt Kenya to the palm trees of Lamu, I dream that this land will be emptied of its detritus of selfish humans who have transformed an oasis of noble beasts into a desert sweltering with the rot of poaching and tourism. My friends, I have a dream that our apes, fauna and snakes will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their hides or the texture of their scales, but by the amount of conservation funding they attract to our shores. I have a dream today. By any means necessary. Yeah.