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Thailand, a tourism hot spot, is coming under increasing scrutiny, and for a disturbing reason. A new investigative report by Lady Freethinker (LFT) exposes a shocking reality behind the country’s tourist-driven ‘big cat selfies.’ Behind each seemingly harmless photo lies a heartbreaking tale of animal abuse.
Source: BBC Three/Youtube
The investigative team from LFT, a Los Angeles-based non-profit dedicated to ending animal suffering, visited eleven zoos in Thailand. They witnessed firsthand, tigers, lions, and ligers shackled to concrete, whipped, and subjected to lighter flames beneath their nostrils – all in the pursuit of the perfect tourist snapshot.
What’s more, they observed distressed tigers pacing in barren, concrete enclosures filled with stagnant water. They also saw lions and ligers chained to the ground, trembling in fear at the sight of raised fists.
Despite being the majestic creatures they are, these big cats appeared undernourished, scarred, and some even visually impaired. Unsurprisingly, these conditions have sparked widespread outrage and calls for reform.
Conservationist and Bachelorette alum Blake Moynes is among the voices joining Lady Freethinker to advocate for the banning of big cat selfies in Thailand. Moynes described the scenes of these animals, who are already on the brink of extinction, subjected to such inhumane treatment as a ‘disgrace.’
Lady Freethinker’s founder and president, Nina Jackel, adds: “Behind every photo op or selfie with a tiger is a lifetime of deprivation and misery.” Her organization is urging Thai officials to put an end to these forced photo ops and reminding the public not to Support places exploiting these remarkable creatures.
Now, it’s time for us to join the chorus. Let’s take action by refusing to patronize such establishments and raising awareness about the hidden cost of these seemingly harmless ‘big cat selfies.’ Support organizations like Lady Freethinker who are on the front lines, advocating for change, and sign their petition urging Thailand to end this cruelty. Together, we can ensure that our tourism doesn’t contribute to the suffering of these majestic animals.
Check out www.ladyfreethinker.org to learn more about their work and to join the fight for a better, kinder world for all animals. Remember, when it comes to animal exploitation, our silence is their suffering.
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