The twin-horned saola is a severely endangered species that was sighted in Vietnam. The mammal is commonly known as the
‘Asian Unicorn’ due to its elusiveness. The animal was seen in Sep-
tember by a camera planted by World Wildlife Fund and the govern-
ment. The country director states that it’s a breathtaking discovery and
brings hope to recover the species. The animal literally cannot get any more awesome, except wait yes it can. Saolas were only discovered in 1992 and have two parallel horns with pointy ends, some reaching up to 50 centimeters in length. One of its kind was captured in August of 2010 but most unfortunately died days after. It marked the first time in the 21
century that a saola has been seen on camera in Laos. The last sighting of a saola in Vietnam was in 1999. Proof of its survival shows that the efforts to conserve its habitat have been effective.
The region of Southeast Asia is home to 126 new species dis-covered in the last year: the Beelzebub tube-nosed bat, yin-yang frog and the phallosteethus cuulong (a fish) to name a few. After reading about some of the species that they mentioned I just had to Google them. The bat was completely adorable; the frog was very interesting and the fish rather disturbing albeit very fascinating. The male phallo-stethids have their genitalia positioned under their throat in order to
fertilize the female’s eggs. Nature is an extraordinary thing and it’s a
shame that all of the most exotic and unique creatures are located out-side New York. However, I suppose that our native animals could be considered different to other people in other places as well. The saola sighting would have been one of those lovely stories and I would have gained some sense of nationalism in my birth coun-try, but then they
to mention endangered species. The rhinoceros is now extinct in Vietnam with the last Javan rhino found dead in April 2010. It had been shot in the leg and the horn chopped off. It is be-lieved that there are only several dozen saola in the world and the best-
case scenario is several hundred. It’s devastating that rhinos are no
longer native to Vietnam due to poaching, the same could easily hap- pen to the saolas. My small semblance of brewing nationalism was taken down a notch when it was mentioned that Vietnam was one of the worst in attempting to prevent illegal trade. They deny it of course.
It’s good to know that now there are at least guards that are looking out
for the species. Forest guards have been placed to prevent hunting;
30,000 snares and 600 hunters’ camps have been removed. The saola
was the first large mammal new to science in over 50 years and quite possibly one of the most brilliant discoveries of the 20
century. Measures must be taken, more than what there is now, to prevent the saolas and any other animals from becoming extinct altogether.
Real Live Unicorn Sighted in Asia
Staff Writer:: McKenzi Murphy
Vietnamese Saola Faces Extinction
Indian Rape Sparks a Revolution
Staff Writer: Maisy Claudio
It is 2013, yet the status of women around the world remains critical. At every stage of life, females are still at risk in places like
Afghanistan and India, both of which were named among the “world’s most dangerous countries in which to be born a woman.”
It is not just lack of medical care and outrageously high mater-nal mortality rates that account for the challenges women face; rape and persistent violence will also stalk them throughout their often-short lives. In India, twice as many women die each day from
“injuries” than from maternal mortality. That statistic alone is proof
enough that, at least in India, women are still considered as worthless
as yesterday’s bread.
On December 16, 2012, a woman and a male friend were trav-eling on a bus in New Delhi after watching a film in the evening, when they were attacked by six men who then raped her. The men also beat the couple and inserted an iron rod into the woman's body, resulting in severe organ damage. Both were then stripped and thrown off the bus, according to police. The woman then died 10 days later due to the trauma inflicted upon her body. On September 9, the men involved with the rape were convicted on all charges. Numerous movements have been put in motion, empowering women to stand up for their rights. But what is next for these movements?
Women’s rights advocates are hopeful that the renewed spot-light on women’s issues will lead to a sustained campaign. Annie Raja,
the general secretary of the National Federation of Indian Women, said
that the growing realization that a woman’s constitutional right to lead
a life of dignity is still in question will continue to lead to more mobi-
lization in the future. “This incident has made the younger generation come out on the streets to demand their constitutional rights,” she said. “Whether until yesterday they were upper middle
-class citizens not willing to come out on the streets, today they are raising their voices
and the government will have to take note of these changes.”
The challenges that the feminist movement now faces stem from the vast diversities within India. Feminism within India is divid-ed along class, caste, sexuality and disability, and as parts of India de-velop at a faster rate, increased social and economic inequality is giv-ing rise to new problems like sexual harassment at the workplace and in public transport. The Indian Government has been trying to accommodate the
feminist movement's demands. India’s new sexual offenses bill—
passed by Parliament on March 21, 2013 and widely hailed as a big
step forward for women’s safety—
offers a solution: complaints of rape, stalking and other sex crimes must be taken by female officers only. This would ideally make women be more comfortable coming forward, and hopefully ensure the complaints be taken seriously. But,
like many of the bill’s provisions, this may prove tough to carry out, some say, given that women currently make up only 6.5%of India’s
police force. A way that you can help aid the revolution in India is to con-tact your local congressman or senator and demand that funding goes to India. The U.S. government gives millions in aid
loans, and gov-ernment grants
to India each year. That funding does not include the millions of dollars provided by private donors and NGOs. This is our money, taxes or donated dollars, and we have the power to insist that our politicians hold India accountable, and make our loans contingent on initiating meaningful change for the well-being
of girls and women.
Women’s Rights Still an Area of Concern