30"x40" oil on linen 2011
Private Collection, Arcata, California
"In fact, the elephant recognizes the language of his homeland, obeys orders, remembers what he learns, knows the passion of love and the ambition of glory, practices virtues “rare even among men,” such as probity, prudence and equity, and has a religious veneration for the sun, the moon, and the stars."
From “Man, the sky and the elephant” pp. 315-330 of The Uses of Literature by Italo Calvino, Harcourt, Brace Jovanovich, New York, 1986.
An Open Letter to the Chief Executive Officer of NBCUniversal
Dear Stephen Burke,
As Chief Executive Officer of NBCUniversal you oversee the vast and important array of news, sports and entertainment networks that make NBCUniversal a leader in global media. In many ways the world looks to you and NBCUniversal for not just entertainment but inspiration. With this in mind, it comes as a visceral shock to me that in a recent episode of Under Wild Skies, a man with a weapon shot pointblank and brutally killed an African elephant on television on your NBC Sports Network. In agonizing detail your film crew documented the suffering animal's futile attempts to run free and its unfortunate demise at the hands of a human with a gun. Do the values of NBC really fall in line with this type of programming? The tracking, hunting, and killing of an endangered species does not fall under anyone's rational definition of entertainment or sport. In almost every country across the globe killing an elephant is illegal and would guarantee a lengthy prison sentence. With this in mind I request that NBC cancel Under Wild Skies and help protect threatened wildlife around the world by supporting responsible wildlife conservation in your programming.
Thank you for your prompt attention to this vital matter.
Labels: elephants, nature, NBC, NBC Sports Network, petition, sign petition, Stephen Burke CEO NBCUniversal, Stop the Slaughter, Under Wild Skies