When you think of native animals of Kentucky, what comes to mind? Horses, maybe? Farm animals? Typical wild animals like bunnies, deer, and other woodland critters? I’m sure elephants don’t come to mind. The last time I checked, elephants weren’t listed as a native species of Kentucky. That’s why it’s so bizarre that the state is considering allowing elephants to be used as a kiddie ride in upcoming state fairs after a ban on the practice.
It pains me to know that these animals are used as food (just as much as it pains me that any animals are looked upon as food sources rather than fellow sentient beings, as if they have no personalities or lives of their own—or, despite that they do, theirs are not as important as our own), and it pains me to know that we systematically kill the animals for no reason at all as well.
Colony Collapse Disorder has become our culture's tabula rasa, a blank slate upon which we can project our fears of the strange and unknown. When causes as diverse as "the proliferation of cell phones" and "High Fructose Corn Sugar" get involved, you know you're in for some confusion.
In truth, Colony Collapse Disorder has primarily stood as a failure of America's science reporting more than anything else. Although most Americans have heard that "the bees are disappearing," few are aware that honeybees are a domesticated non-native species like cows and chickens, or that CCD's failure numbers are not nearly as devastating as the press has made them out to be.