go to content
World

People Are Touched By This Celeb Who Gave Up His Wedding Photo For An Elephant

"I don’t want to see any elephant exist solely for the purpose of human entertainment," Wang wrote on Facebook.

Posted on

This is Chris Wang, an actor, model, singer and writer from Taiwan.

facebook.com

Wang is best known for hosting the popular Taiwanese travel show The King of Adventure.

In a Facebook post on Sunday, Wang said that the couple – who were initially against riding elephants – decided to include them in their wedding photos after discovering how crucial elephants were to locals.

The couple then decided to forgo the photos of them with the elephants, but wanted to share their story "because they don't want to see any elephant exist solely for the purpose of human entertainment."

Facebook: yousheng0609

Today Lei's mom and I took our first wedding photos, but ultimately we decided that we must give up on these particular photos.

As soon as we arrived in Chitwan National Park, we spoke about elephants. Because the streets were almost filled with them, and lots of families have their own elephants. But we decided we wouldn't ride them or pay for them, because we felt really sorry for them.

However, after we came into contact with the locals, we discovered just how important elephants were to them. As there are bears, tigers and even leopards in the Chitwan jungle, humans cannot safely enter it without riding an elephant. So besides national park management or the rehabilitation of white rhinos, they are very dependent on elephants (The Chitwan area's rehabilitation plan has successfully relocated white rhinos to other habitats, and they have started to breed more), because they can arrest illegal poachers and ban deforestation. So at the time we thought, seeing as elephants were so important to Chitwan, then yes, we should invite them to appear in our Chitwan wedding photos!

But... when we finished the shoot, I finally understood why no one feels it is inhumane to ride a cow or a horse, but do feel sorry for domesticated elephants. Because elephants are just too intelligent. It knows deep down that it is being controlled. It also completely understands that humans control its weakness.

During the shoot, while we stood next to the elephant, stroking it and thanking it, it didn't say anything. But when the shoot finished, it suddenly looked at me with tears in its eyes. I will never forget that look. I felt that it had a lot it wanted to say, and I also felt that although it didn't intend on resisting, it felt very sad. Maybe it has the power to face all sorts of wild beasts. But it is humans who it cannot break away from. Because it knows what the consequences are of going ballistic and seeking revenge, so it continues to bear this suffering. At the time, I only said to it, "Thank you for all of your hard work today. The universe needs you. Everyone needs you." But in my heart I actually felt very sad. Because I knew I couldn't do anything to help it, just like facing a patient with an incurable disease, I didn't know what I could do to help it.

So we decided not to use these photos but to share this story publicly, because I don't want to see any elephant exist solely for the purpose of human entertainment. If it has to live a life with the locals, I don't oppose, but if it is solely for the entertainment and service for others, at least I can say that I will not touch them... I will never touch them again.

Thank you, elephants. You give the world a lot of power. I hope that you will live and grow, and that one day, you will be able to walk the path that you want to.

#ElephantsOfChitwan
#NotForgotten
#OpposeElephantEntertainment

People are incredibly touched by Wang's story.

Facebook: yousheng0609

"Thank you for all your hard work, elephants!"

Facebook: yousheng0609

"Thank you for sharing this great story. I trust that the elephants can feel it."

Facebook: yousheng0609

"I am reading this and crying. I love elephants and once visited so-called elephant zoos just to see them up close. I now regret this immensely, because I once saw what you saw; I saw their helpless, sad eyes, and it broke my heart right then and there. I truly hope that one day, they will no longer be slaves to people. Oppose elephant entertainment."

Facebook: yousheng0609

"When I went to Thailand, I saw an elephant that had hurt its leg. My mom was crying and stroking it while thanking it for all of its hard work. The elephant started to to cry right then and there. I was stunned when I saw this – I had no idea elephants were so intelligent!"

BuzzFeed News has reached out to Wang for further comment.

Kassy Cho is a reporter with BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

Contact Kassy Cho at kassy.cho@buzzfeed.com.

Got a confidential tip? Submit it here.