If you, too, have been wanting to write to China for a long long time - please read the letter below and if you agree with its content, just sign the petition and a message will instantly be send to the Chinese Embassies in:
--- UPDATE 25/03/2012 ---
following demands from our friends and supporters, we have added the Chinese embassies in ARGENTINA, ITALY, PERU, TURKEY, DENMARK and THE NETHERLANDS to the list of addressees.
The letter including pictures and references is available here:
I've been wanting to write to you for a long long time, but always thought that my letters would not reach you or get to the right people. But there is some things that have been on my mind for a while and I decided to give it another go and write to you.
I have great concerns and a number of questions about animals, not only the animals in your country, but the animals in other countries. The concerns I have is about your menu in restaurants, the selection of meat that you feel the need to consume, the treatment of animals, and animals in general.
You may not wish to answer me, but you should. The reason why you should answer is because these are questions and facts that possibly over half of the world would like to know the answers to.
Before I ask you these questions, I would like to outline a few Chinese historical and cultural subjects ie: your beliefs, your culture, and your moral ground.
Animals have played a big part in the Chinese culture for thousands of years since 2100 BC maybe earlier, so I understand you've been around for a long time.
But of course with all civilizations and generations of human beings, time moves forward and we learn and grow. Sometimes we learn that things we did years ago were wrong or outdated. For instance I am pretty sure that you know that your inventions such as the shadow clocks and the abacus used for mathematical and astronomical observations are obviously outdated in this modern age. The shadow clock has become a decorative item used in gardens and a watch worn to tell the time on our wrist, an abacus is now a calculator, and astronomical observations is done via powerful computer technology and instruments such as the Hubble Telescope.
So things change, and although these above mentioned items were great accomplishments at the time and part of your cultural evolution, they are outdated and are part of history. And let's face it, in this day and age they are items which you wouldn't choose to use unless you had to.
I would just like you to clarify a few things for me.
It's come to the world's attention, that China, in particular, seems to have an appetite for any creature on the planet. This includes your procurement of critically endangered species from other countries, usually through the wildlife trade, or some other type of black market operation.
The reason I know these facts are true is because of education. Education is a wonderful thing. Not only does it teach us maths and languages, it also teaches us about our earth and environment.
I had a look at the Chinese education system and became aware that you do actually teach about plant and animal species and conservation. But there must be some sort of breakdown in communication because China is now at the forefront of open animal abuse and the extinction of species via the black market for things like status, eliteness, and Traditional Chinese Medicines.
Going back to your historical and cultural background, Traditional Chinese Medicine theory is based on ancient Daoist philosophical and religious conceptions of balance and opposites, ie: yin and yang, and other metaphysical belief systems. TCM includes herbs, minerals, acupuncture, tuina massage therapy, dietary therapy and animal & human body part use. Which brings me to my first question. As with all other Chinese historical and cultural science & technology, you moved forward once you found better ways to do things, once a newer technique was found. The older designs were disguarded and classed as outdated science and technology, no longer relevant in an evolving society.
Please tell me, (and the world), why have you chosen to stagnate with Chinese Traditional Medicines (TCM)?
It is a known fact that TCM animal body part use was based not on the anatomical study of the human body, but astrological calculations and complex associations with gods.
Historically and culturally TCM animal body part remedies came from the identification of an animal behavior or body part which was then applied to the corresponding human part and/or behavior. These theorized remedies were then sold to people to help or cure by applying the animal predispositions corresponding to human dispositions. Basically it was all made up via myths and legends.
As civilization moved forward, so did the advanced knowledge of scientific medicines. For many years, it has been known, world wide, that TCM animal body part use is solely based on theory with very few, if any, of the medical claims curing or helping any ailment. Over the years scientific medicines have been created to treat diseases and ailments which are by far more advanced than what TCM animal body part use theoretically offered. For example:
The Rhinoceros Horn:
TCM states that Rhino horn is used as an 'anti-fever' remedy, and some use it as beauty tonic.
Science has proven the Rhino horn is only keratin, just like our finger nails. And science has proven keratin has no anti-fever or beauty tonic qualities.
So why haven't you advanced in this outdated theorised medicinal use of the Rhino? It doesn't do anything for a human being.
Is it pride? Arrogance?
Whatever your theoretical reasons are, China, your continued use of the Rhino horn, and these ancient outdated beliefs are driving the Rhino to extinction.
Aren't you embarrassed? Ashamed?
If you want keratin, I am sure the people who actually live in the countries where the Rhino is, would gladly begin giving you their fingernail and toenail cuttings if you would only get out of their backyard and leave their Rhino alone. Actually, I think people all over the world would give you their nail clippings. Problem solved!
Not only is it foolish to continue to state inaccurate medicinal uses of the Rhino horn, but it is also a vile act where you are allowing the black market corruption to flourish in your own country, while other countries are suffering the infiltration of warlord type personalities, desecrating their beloved species.
And what about the Tiger?
Your continued cultural medicinal theorised significance of the Tiger in TCM, is not only false and based on nothing but heresy, sorry cultural & historical medicine... but you have successfully hunted your own tiger sub-species to extinction and you now procure off other countries species again, in this case the Tiger.
Knowing that you think of the tiger as a walking drug store, I would love to sit down and discuss/disprove all of these theorised things.
So I will address one of the nastier TCM claims - Tiger penis soup - used for increasing virility. This came about because someone in history saw the tiger mating numerous times per day and thought that by cutting the tiger's penis off, making it into a soup and drinking it, it would correspond to a human penis and make them virile. What you didn't know, but do now, is that the tiger mates rarely, maybe once, twice per year, depending on a few factors. But at the time, mating occurs repeatedly.
But the tiger penis is nothing but another organ of meat. So basically your TCM tiger penis soup is a meat soup which may contain a bit of iron. I am sure male TCM penis soup users will be horrified to know not only does it do nothing for them, but even if the benefits were true, it would only be for men who want to mate once or twice a year....
Modern medical science has produced medicines which aid impotence in men. In addition your own TCM herbal remedies such as Ginseng, Horny Goat Weed actually do more for virility than a meat soup. And of course Viagra has hit the market.
China, there is not 100.000 tigers running around in the wild, there is only a possible estimated 2.500 adult breeding pairs in the wild. Your belief in your cultural rights and your stubborn inability to act and stop the slaughter of this species is the reason the tiger is spiralling to extinction in the wild.
Anyway, lets put logic aside.
Can you explain to me why China needs to procure off other countries species?
It's pretty rude, and it's not like it is going un-noticed.... What would you do if the Panda suddenly became a source of food for another country other than China & warlords were killing the last remaining Panda's? Just something for you to think about.
What about Bear Bile?
What are you thinking? Moon bears and Asiatic Black Bears seem to be your bear of choice.
Yes, the bear has higher ursodeoxycholic acid (UDCA), however your herbal plants Coptic and rhubarb are great alternatives, and even many of your own Chinese doctors refuse to use bear bile.
Snake Oil - this is puzzling!
Snake Oil is used for maladies, however no replicated studies has proven any benefits of it for joint pain.
Why aren't you phasing out snake oil and promoting your very own balms made of plants that actually are proven to work?
Culture, history? Or is it something else?
Look, I could go on forever about the vulnerable, endangered, and critically endangered species that you want to use in theoretical, outdated, disproved medicines but I want to ask you about your menu.
Shark fin soup:
This has got to one of the biggest scams yet.
China, you have promoted shark soup as an 'elite' soup, as soup of 'status' and because you did that, the massive indiscriminate slaughter of millions of sharks have brought some species to the brink of extinction.
It's not elite or carries status.
Try some mushroom soup or asparagus, very elite and served for Kings and Queens, and if I'm not mistaken, Emperors too.
Masked Palm Civet:
I am wondering why you put the Masked Palm Civet on the menu?
I would just like to inform you that the palm civet is a known carrier of SARS virus (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) which the WHO (World Health Organisation) informed you of prior to you placing it on menu's.
Do the Chinese people even know about this?
I have a piece of useful information for you: your Chinese citizens would know a lot more if you would stop fire walling and blocking this sort of information.
What was Beijing Zoo thinking by putting the webbed toes of the Hippopotamus on the menu, along with most of the other zoo animals there? It's not really a tourist draw card.
And up in Wenzhou, the serving of rare Pangolin, Black Swans, & Bharal in restaurants. Another example of false TCM and your seemingly strange obsession with keratin. The Pangolin is considered a delicacy and TCM use of their scales said to reduce swelling and help breast feeding etc.
Pangolin scales are keratin. You know this, stop it!
Flying squirrel feces :
I haven't got much to say about this but I just want to let you know that it is scientifically proven that Flying squirrel feces is directly linked to Typhus fever. A horrible disease.
Also, you might want to rethink your Chinese astrological charts and the reasons why these animals were chosen. Let me explain this.
Eg: The tiger is linked in your historical and cultural past as likening emperors and great people to it. Words like valiant, respected, mighty, and strong are used, but you are destroying and extinguishing your own legend with your insatiable appetite.
You might want to choose some additional species for your zodiac pretty soon because you are annihilating a number of them off the face of the earth.
I just want to remind you that you are a signatory of the CITES agreement since 08/01/1981. Does that hold any type of significance to you? Because it doesn't look like it does. Your words indicated to the world that you would abide by the protection of species, however your actions speak the opposite. I apologize now if I am wrong but your track record is shameful.
For a country which has made major advances, you are failing and betraying the very planet that you need, to survive. Your Panda breeding program is brilliant, however do not think for one moment that this allows or entitles you to mindless annihilation of any other species, in the name of cultural historical rights.
What will you do when the last Tiger or Rhino or Pangolin etc is gone? Well, when it comes to the Tiger, the horrible thing is that I can actually answer that already. The Lion has begun to replace the Tiger in TCM, particularly wines. And you have begun to do this because of what? The tigers are still here, for now. Do you see the end in sight for the tigers? Do you already know that you won't stop the killing? Will you not stop the false Great Cat TCM use?
China, you have alienated yourself across the world and you're seen by many as a giant vacuum sucking up the world's natural resources, inflicting brutalities upon our earth's creatures and a destructor of species.
But, you can stop this growing perception of China, you only have to say the magic word 'Stop' and then do the most vitally important thing in your nation's history, to truly act on it. I can guarantee that if you did, it would show a little long sort after leadership.
I do look forward to a response from you and any clarification of my thought, questions, etc, and I would be more than happy to sit down and discuss these issues with you.
I know that you feel you are a mighty country and that you do not feel that you need to answer to anyone, and I am just one, possibly meaningless, person to you. But your country's integrity is crumbling to dust because you have disrespected species from virtually every country in the world and whether you like it or not, you are the cause of the extinction of numerous revered creatures.
You do not have the right to this systematic genocide of species, you never did.