In this day and age, when millions of species are going extinct due to human activities, it is not just a horror but also a disgrace to see ignorance further massacring species deliberately, especially when the creatures are some of the last remaining majestic mammals that once roamed freely around many parts of the globe. As the Economist rightly points out, there is no scientific or medical evidence that the parts of tigers, rhinoceroses, bears or any other animals (endangered or not) have any beneficial effect in the treatment of any ailments, diseases or disorders. In fact, the horn of a rhino is simply made up of the same substance that human hair and nails are – keratin – along with some other minerals like calcium and melanin, which are also found in human bones and skin.
In an age when science and technology have directly led to enormous improvements in life expectancy, life quality and access to education and information, it is extremely disheartening that people are still cowed by superstition, and in particular when this kind of superstition is leading directly to the extinction of magnificent species that we are supposed to be sharing our planet with. It is even worse when this is happening for the sake of greed, selfishness and downright stupidity. So why don’t these people buying endangered species just chew their own fingernails and eat their own hair – it would have just the same placebo effect.
資料參考: China waters down its ban on the use of tiger and rhino parts