On the Cloning of Woolly Mammoths

Dear Chairman of Whatever the Organization is in charge of Japanese Scientists,

Good day. I imagine that you and your fellow researchers are currently smugly convened in matching white one-piece uniforms around a circular table in a dimly lit room somewhere beneath Tokyo. No more than a few days ago, I happened to come upon a fairly startling report in the Associated Press regarding you people’s Japanese Scientists’ upcoming attempt to clone a woolly mammoth.

Now, I must applaud this experiment as it is truly a fascinating idea, Jurassic Park connotations notwithstanding. However, can you imagine how detrimental this plan could be to the world’s existing elephant population?

I mean, I hate to admit it, but we elephants aren’t doing too well in the looks department. We have big, long noses, gigantic tusks, ears that stick out, and flat feet. OH WAIT WE’RE ALSO FAT AND HAVE TAILS! Plus we take huge dumps. Really, just not fun to be around.

With this plan to resurrect our old relative, the woolly mammoth, how do you think that would affect our self-esteem? They have such beautiful, glorious hair! Can you imagine what all of the female elephants will be saying to us males when they start noticing the male mammoths? They’ll be all, “Oh, Murray, you’ve been bald your whole life! The Rogaine isn’t working. I’m running off with Jim the Mammoth. His tusks are 6 feet longer than yours. And besides, he’s so young and adventurous.” If I were you, Chairman, I would not be able to live with a decision which will ruin so many elephant marriages.

And I haven’t yet addressed the potentially traumatic experience this whole ordeal will likely cause for the surrogate mother of this mammoth. You say that the mammoth embryo will be implanted in an elephant’s uterus, which will later give birth to a mammoth. Can you imagine giving birth to a completely hairy baby mammoth? It would probably kill you. But for a mother elephant, who thinks she’s going to get a child, and instead will be confused as to where the hairy creature came from, this is just too much pain. Also, she’ll have to have a serious discussion about where the baby came from with her husband, if he can stomach the mammoth long enough to have said conversation.

As part of the announcement, scientist Akira Iritani said the goal of the experiment would be to “examine its ecology and genes to study why the species became extinct.” Sir, I would like to tell you that if you plan to proceed with this experiment, you might as well collect some elephant embryos and put them in storage, because soon enough, we will be extinct as a result of this so-called research. They say we elephants have thick skin. This is true, but only in the literal sense.

Yours Truly,
Babar J. Tuskington, Vice President of PachPAC
(PachPAC is a political action committee striving to improve the rights of non-extinct pachyderms both in America and worldwide. Because of its designation as a 501(c)(3) organization, PachPAC does accept tax deductible donations. Out of principle, however, we do not accept peanuts. It is degrading to us and to the thousands of elephants held in captivity by circuses worldwide.)

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