Cuddling Up To Cruelty

Suffering Unseen: The Dark Truth Behind Wildlife Tourism – National Geographic, June 2019, Natasha Daly

Nightmare Reality

“I’ve come back to check on a baby. Just after dusk I’m in a car lumbering down a muddy road in the rain, past rows of shackled elephants, their trunks swaying. I was here five hours before, when the sun was high and hot and tourists were on elephants’ backs.
Walking now, I can barely see the path in the glow of my phone’s flashlight. When the wooden fence post of the stall stops me short, I point my light down and follow a current of rainwater across the concrete floor until it washes up against three large, gray feet.”

Through the WI lens

This investigative feature lifts the lid in sometimes horrifying detail on the wild animals who are tamed and brutally trained to become objects for human interaction, under the label of ‘wildlife encounters’ or simply to adorn a thousand Instagram accounts. In a world where the ultimate selfie involves lying down with a tiger, or posing on the beach with a baby elephant, it seems that few of the participants consider what was done to the animal to make it so benign and to tease out its performance. The harsh reality, uncovered by National Geographic’s team, is that animals – elephants, tigers, bears, sloths, anteaters and many more – are too often trained through pain and fear to appear as loveable props in human lives. As consumers increasingly seek out ‘experiences’ in preference to traditional holidays, it’s vital that any hospitality operator think very carefully before offering any experience involving wild animals, and find out exactly what has taken place in the background. Far better to focus on eco-tourism that makes a genuine contribution to wildlife while keeping the animals at a distance in their own environment – and to educate participants about the true cost of these grotesque opportunities to boost the customer’s self-esteem and selfie appeal.
The take out? There’s clearly an opportunity for services for the dying that treat the subject holistically, rather than as a medical process. But a more candid conversation, one that allows people to confront their fears and express their wishes, is an aspect of this movement that has far-reaching implications for all those involved in healthcare and wellbeing.

Pluses (and minuses) Of Positive Thinking

November 10, 2020

What this article goes on to explain is how positive thinking – described here as ‘thriving’ – can counter the effects that come from the negativity outlined above, from reduced memory to diminished performance. Based on studying people in a series of organisations in different industries, one of the authors has found that people who attain this state are more resilient, experience less burnout, and are more confident in their ability to take control of a situation

Working With Nature

November 10, 2020

“Behind the jargon what this is really about is how we address the challenge of biodiversity under threat, move away from fossil materials like plastic and concrete, and use nature in a sustainable way, all of which could be summed up by “living in harmony with nature”.”

Resetting Company Culture

October 12, 2020

“In the new ‘consensual contract’ between employer and worker, what’s required is a commitment from the employer to safeguard the wellbeing of their people, and a commitment in return from employees to take personal responsibility for their performance of their job.”

Countering Loneliness

October 3, 2020

“Could loneliness not only be damaging our mental and physical health but also be making the world a more aggressive, angry place? And if so, what are the implications for a cohesive society and democracy?”

Staking The Moral High Street

August 30, 2020

“On such fragile foundations are built the first steps towards a more ethical kind of business, and who knows what virtuous circles might result?”

Breathe Easy

August 28, 2020

“Scientific evidence recently emerged that, contrary to earlier beliefs, Covid-19 can be spread by tiny droplets that we breathe out when we respire, called aerosols.”

Why Obesity Needs Weighty Solutions

August 6, 2020

“Economic wellbeing is part of the story, but it is also about finding less stressful lifestyles, in which healthy diet figures as a meaningful measure of success.”

Pulling Together Out Of Lockdown

July 8, 2020

“The industry has every asset needed to be a guiding light in the shift toward personal health priority. Will that become a prevention legacy, a ‘phoenix rising’ from the Covid-19 ashes?”

Opening The Right Doors

July 2, 2020

“Looking at the bigger picture, putting the measures in this order represents a lost opportunity that the pandemic could have offered for a cultural pivot pivot towards getting people more focused on their health, a powerful statement of intent.”

Home (working) Truths

June 26, 2020

“Employment is necessary to fulfil our most basic human needs such as food and shelter. Any significant increase in long-term unemployment will spell a retrograde step for human wellbeing like no other.”

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