The Ivory Game Analysis

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An elephant is killed almost every fifteen minutes. From 2007 to 2014 the elephant population has declined by thirty percent (theivorygame). Over two-thirds of the African elephants have been lost due to illegal ivory trade and the number is not slowing (eagle-enforcement.org). Throughout the Netflix original documentary, The Ivory Game, the issue of elephant poaching is presented to the viewer in a way that invokes many emotions and sparks much passion about the subject. The movie follows a multitude of people who are involved in the international fight against the poachers. Not only does the director present well-timed facts to engage the audience, but it also shows video footage and gets the real life people who are involved to explain the…show more content…
The poachers are the one who directly murder the animal but in fact, it is the internal corruption that is the true villain. The director reveals this to the viewer by following an investigative journalist. The investigative journalist is such a key player in the story because he is Chinese. Hongxiang Huang partners with Andrea Costa, founder of Wildleaks (the first whistleblowing organization dedicated to fighting wildlife crime) to go undercover as a customer interested in buying ivory. Since he is of the same ethnicity as the dealers no one became suspicious of his motives. They discover immense corruption within the government, with many top military and political officials being directly involved in the ivory trade. China made a fatal decision in 2008 when they allowed a one-time sale of ivory to the Far Eastern market (biglife.org). Without much regulation, many loopholes were available for people to sell the ivory illegally. A secret black market pipeline was created from Africa, through Vietnam, and eventually into China where it is carved and sold for approximately 2,100 dollars per kilogram (theivorygame.com). White Gold, or ivory as it is known in China, is seen as a status of wealth and is increasingly valuable. A rise in the middle class means an influx in demand for the product (theivorygame.com). The poachers want to kill the elephants because the more scarce the…show more content…
No matter what they do, the firearms and poachers will win every time. So everything we do is aimed at helping those elephants fight back” (the ivory game). The only person who is able to save the elephants is the President of China. Without the demand from the Chinese, the Ivory market would crash and the elephants would be out of harms way. If the internal corruption is not put to a halt then the elephants will become a lost species. When looking at all of them information that is presented in the documentary and the articles following; it is evident that the battle for the elephants will not be an easy one to be won. How can someone persuade the government to regulate and enforce punishment for illegal ivory trade when the government officials themselves are the ones directly involved in it? Many of the Africans who are hired to be poachers do it to be able to feed their children. Would taking away their jobs cause destruction to these families? How can awareness be brought to this issue in such a convincing manner that would inspire people to shut down a multi-billion dollar industry? What can common people like me do to help? This is no longer a simple issue involving a few armed dealers and people looking to make money, rather this has turned into one of the world 's largest organized criminal activities. The ultimate question that needs to

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