This not very well written book about the history of elephants in the USA is, despite the clumsy prose, actually interesting. It details the sad sordid history of how we've used but mostly abused elephants here in the US.
They start out as a curiosity and grew into a prized animal for circuses and exhibitions but for all their shady entertainment value, their lives have been nothing short of pain filled abuse fests. In order to get elephants, especially males, to do the tricks that people crave, they have to be beaten and hit with large metal hooks. They've been shot, stabbed, electrocuted, and hung because they had the gall to be the animals they were born to be. It's a sad sorry tale from start to finish.
And it doesn't end well because many zoos still insist on keeping elephants in tiny pens so we fat fucking humans can go gawk at them. If I could, I'd free every elephant in every zoo everywhere. They should all be returned to Africa and Asia, their normal habitats. We've got no business having them here. It's cruel and disastrous to keep elephants in zoos and circuses in north America, or anywhere for that matter.
The sad history of elephants was made worse by Tobias's clunky and fractured writing.
Dr. Monkey Hussein Monkerstein