The Heartbreak of the Naked Ape

“Pony is an orangutan from a prostitute village in Borneo. We found her chained to a wall, lying on a mattress. She had been shaved all over her body.” A naked ape, being used as a sex slave.

naked ape
Pony before [inset] and after. Photos courtesy of the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation
“If a man walked near her, she would turn herself around, present herself, and start gyrating and going through the motions… She was probably about six or seven years old when we rescued her, but she had been held captive by a madam for a long time. The madam refused to give up the animal because everyone loved Pony and she was a big part of their income. They also thought Pony was lucky, as she would pick winning lottery numbers.” (Quote from Michelle Diselets, the Director of The Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation.)

I don’t know why it is that a story about animal abuse like this has the power to affect us in ways that stories about our cruelty to each other do not. It is true none the less. The story indicates that the village where Pony was rescued was a place where the rain forest is being cut down to produce palm oil. It does not indicate if this has removed the livelihood of the village or if the village is the local equivalent of a logging camp. I am searching in my mind for a cause for such depravity.

I need very much to believe in one, that no group of people can be naturally this corrupt.

“It took us over a year to rescue her, because every time we went in with forest police and local officers we would be overpowered by the villagers, who simply would not give her up. They would threaten us with guns and knives with poison on them. In the end it took 35 policemen armed with AK-47s and other weaponry going in there and demanding that they hand over Pony.”

Be seeing you.


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