Chinese Millennials

Will Chinese Millennials diverge from their elders’ and ancestors’ infatuation with consuming the world’s endangered species?

“Worth thousands of dollars on the Chinese black market.”

That statement alone should make you shudder with regards to what the Chinese economy is set to do to the world’s endangered wildlife. With nearly 1.4 billion people, 70% of which are up and coming middle class — many of whom will be subscribing to the traditions of their ancestors — China will soon be eating, drinking, buying and owning the world’s critically threatened species.

Elephant ivory. Rhino horn. Exotic bear, tiger, simian, marsupial and fish organs. The consumption of all of these and hundreds, if not thousands, of other medicinal and collectible parts of animals, are all on the rise in China.

Yes, the Western world had, as its toy, for centuries, the undeveloped world. The United States extracted one of the greatest tolls on the planet as it sucked at the planet’s resources before, during, and after the country’s golden years. And then the rest of the industrialized world caught on and replicated America’s rapacious exploitation. Colonialism started it, but transnational corporations are finishing it. And yet, through it all, the West seems to have found religion. They’ve realized the detrimental impact they have on the species of the world (or so they would have us think; I do believe the West is trying to be a good curator now).

But China and India (and the other countries of Asia?) they’re just getting started in their consumption cycles. If just a third of China’s middle class all want to own an ivory trinket of some sort (to honor tradition, or establish a wealth designation) that alone will have 300 million Chinese buying carved ivory — extracted mostly through illegal sources — effectively wiping out the entire African elephant population.

And that’s just the elephants. A million apothecaries all trying to get black bear pancreases, or tiger penises, or pangolin fetuses, or totoaba bladders (a fish), will utterly destroy the populations of such species.

So, I ask, will the Chinese Millennials alter the future of their people and reject such ancient superstitious traditions and help save, rather than consume, the world’s endangered species?


6 responses to “Chinese Millennials

  • Anony Mole

    “Men from Eluxolweni risk their lives to collect abalone, a status food that sells in China for more than $200 per kilogram when dried. Over the past 25 years, trafficking syndicates with links to the drug trade have illegally exported more than 50,000 tonnes of South African abalone, driving the species—found nowhere else on Earth—to the brink of commercial extinction.”

    https://www.hakaimagazine.com/news/poverty-poaching-and-death-great-white-shark/

    Like

  • Anony Mole

    “Face” is of major importance to the Chinese. To be seen in a fancy restaurant is more important than the food you may eat there. China is a culture of one-up-manship. If this does not change, then the endangered creatures of the world that are “valued” by the Chinese — don’t stand a chance.

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  • George F.

    Anony: your critical comments on my blog are so correct, I’m beginning to wonder who you really are. I appreciate your thoughts and welcome them. I’m not sure how I attracted you, or how you were attracted to my blog, but your comments and analysis are very welcome and highly appreciated. Thank you! And I certainly am pushing for you to get published!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Anony Mole

      We are all equals; just at different stages of development. I assure you, where I find myself today, is leaps beyond my writing self only two years ago.
      The one thing I found, as strange as this may seem, is to physically copy someone’s writing. There is some author you feel drawn to. Find one of their books. Find some passage that just sings to you. And physically retype that passage into a page. Feel the words as they link up in your mind and translate through your fingers. The rhythm. The cadence. The phrasing. Don’t over do it. But try it.
      Writing well can be learned.

      Liked by 1 person

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