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Donkeys slaughtered for skin
There is a real donkey slaughter going on. For some reason the skins are being used in Chinese medicine. To keep up with the demand it is not enough to slaughter Chinese donkeys. They are now buying thousands of skins from Africa. This is leading to illegal trafficking in skins and illegal unregulated slaughter.

This illegal donkey trade is leading to animal abuse and a serious depletion of the donkey population.  In some areas the donkeys will be wiped out. The trade in the skins helps fund other illegal trafficking. It is part of the whole poaching and exploiting animals that is going on. 

Why donkeys? How can anyone think that a donkey skin is a source of healing?
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Distressing to read. Even if donkey skins have any medicinal value (which I seriously doubt), I would rather do without it than see these graceful, gentle creatures killed for their skins. This is disgraceful and just goes to show how stupid, short-sighted and cruel humans can be be.

Articles like this help to raise awareness of the issue; I didn't know about this shocking trade before. What is needed above all is for scientific debunking of the alleged benefits, followed by widespread anti-publicity in China, so that Chinese people will no longer be queuing up to buy such products. If the demand is no longer there, the trafficking will stop.

Communist China is officially atheist - see - but unfortunately these primitive superstitions about animal skins persist there.
Chinese traditional medicine needs a serious overhaul. The body parts of Tigers, the gall bladders of Bears, plus the idea of eating dogs who have been subjected to horrendous the skins of Donkeys. It is all so wrong on more than one level. If these medical  traditionalists were one single person, they would be locked up in a secure institution.

I don't think even Soviet Russia went in for this kind of medical stupidity....did they?

Yes Chinese scientists need to prove that Tigers' whiskers for example, do not contain substances which help inflammation; in exactly the same way we operate in the West, to prove or disprove the healing ability of medicinal substances. They need to do proper scientific studies and not allow their people to be full of superstition. Obviously medical science in China leaves a lot to be desired.

I am a strong advocate for traditional herbal medicine, and have found that plants do the job very well indeed. I rely on them absolutely.
It seems that the more bizarre the idea, the more likely people are to believe it. How is bear gall bladder a medicine. We have our own gall bladders and they work better for us because they are our gall bladders. There is nothing special about a donkey skin that would give medicinal properties.

Plants as medicine are different. Plants contain small amounts of chemicals that have a gentle effect on the body. You can take  few leaves from a plant and make a tea from it(or how ever else it is used) and it will help. Because the amounts are smaller, any drug present in a plant will work with the body and have a more subtle effect. 

The common theme of these so called traditional remedies is that an animal has to suffer and die because it involves some part of the animal. They don't just eat dog meat, the dog has to be killed brutally. The donkeys have to be slaughtered to get the "medicine". They all involve cruelty.

Plants freely give us what we need, but that is too simple. They think it must be something strange for it to work as medicine.

Even in western medicine there is a lot of odd thinking. People are suddenly refusing to vaccinate their children. 
We have totally misused pain killers and antibiotics and now there is a whole new set of medical problems arising from that.
We don't use a drug that hasn't been tested on countless animals. So much of our medicine involves animal cruelty as well.

Where did we as a species get the idea that cruelty to animals is the best medicine.
When did we lose the acceptance of the herbal gifts that nature gives us?

I thought the USSR worked at being very advanced in medicine. Was it medically superstitious as well?
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(09-26-2017, 03:27 PM)Catherine Wrote: I thought the USSR worked at being very advanced in medicine. Was it medically superstitious as well?

Not as far as I know. This sort of primitive superstition seems to be specifically Chinese.
You are right. It is a specific kind of superstition that believes odd animal parts can heal human ailments. I can't imagine how some ideas got started. Unless it was all started by a con artist. A handful of cat whiskers become tiger whiskers and they suddenly have special healing properties. I can't think of why anyone would try bear gall bladder in the first place. 

I suppose that is the nature of superstitions, they make no rational sense.
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