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Bamboo, a female Asian elephant, rests on a gate outside of the elephant barn at the Woodland Park Zoo. (Steve Ringman / The Seattle Times)

It is disappointing that the editorial board at The Seattle Times thinks it is an expert on elephants [“Give Woodland Park Zoo elephants Bamboo and Chai much-needed retirement,” Opinion, Jan. 27]. What makes its members think that the editorial board knows what is best for the elephants?

Yesterday, I visited Woodland Park Zoo with my 3-year-old. We visited the elephants, and with several other families, watched Bamboo get a shower. Up close, you get to see what amazing animals these elephants really are.

We need to keep a few elephants in zoos where they are easily accessible to our children and grandchildren. Elephants in the wild could be extinct in decades. We are not going to be able to save them if the only place we see elephants are in books.

Seeing the elephants at the zoo makes them real to us. That is the purpose zoos serve: to bring awareness to animals that we would not otherwise encounter. Woodland Park Zoo does so many good things and I’m disappointed that people would want to take its funding away.

I don’t believe the general public or our elected officials know enough about elephants to be making these decisions. It is time we let the experts and common sense prevail.

Julie Carr, Seattle