A herd of Indian elephants has destroyed a village. From the story
About 100 wild elephants have converged on a river island in northeast India, demolishing homes, feasting on sugarcane and panicking residents, officials said Saturday.
Thousands of villagers were using firecrackers and bonfires to scare away the rampaging animals. "Dozens of houses have been destroyed in the past three days by adult elephants entering human settlements to look for their wandering calves," said the local magistrate, L.S. Changsan.
Up to 50 families have moved to a local school being used as a refugee camp, Changsan said...Officials say the elephants swam to the island from a nearby hill region, beginning their rampage nearly a week ago.
If humans had done this to the village, it would rightly be condemned as an evil act of aggression and lawlessness. But elephants are amoral. They are just being elephants. They are indifferent to the suffering they are causing to another species.
This illustrates one of the crucial differences between human beings and animals. Only we are truly moral beings understanding of right and wrong, good and evil. And we have a unique capacity to empathize with "the other." We care about them, even if they can't care about us. That is one reason we try to save elephant habitats and protect these magnificent beasts from poaching, while they will destroy villages, kill the unwary, and generally disrupt human life without a moment's hesitation. And that is a distinction between us and animals with a huge difference.