First Martian Elephant Achieves Personhood

Olympus Mons Wildlife Preserve, Mars -- 3 Apr. 2057:  High expectations have been fulfilled today as a member of the experimental Mars-modified uplifted pachyderm population decanted in 2041 has at last successfully completed the Deckard-Bowman Series and been recognized as a full legal person.  The elephant has formally shed her experimental designation, EE-5792, and registered herself for a Citizen Identity Code under the name Titus Tembe Risingdawn.  The event is vindication for the beleaguered Martian Savanna ecotecture project, which has been criticized by electors as a waste of money.

"The remaining elephant communities on Earth are demoralized and hemmed in," stated project head Dr. Sibry Thorne in an audio interview,  "despite strenuous efforts to provide them with sufficient range and habitat.  It is believed that the entire branch of the tree of life may be gone within a few generations.  Uplift has, if anything, made the problem worse; the elephants have not dealt well with full understanding of the atrocities committed against their kind in ages past.  Even now, rogue elephant terrorist attacks are causing tension between elephant and human communities on Earth, and elephant suicide rates are skyrocketing.  The ecotecture of Olympus Mons represents a fresh start for elephants."

According to the scientists who have raised her from infancy, Ms. Risingdawn was always the most precocious of their elephant charges.  "Titus loves to explore," said Dr. Killian Kelly.  "She would take off for days, right to the fringe of the grasslands.  She craves knowledge and reads for hours every day, practically anything.  I think she'll go far."  According to Dr. Kelly, several of Ms. Risingdawn's brothers and sisters may soon be ready for the Deckard-Bowman.  "They need to work on their social skills and empathic reasoning, but their logic and scientific skills are impeccable and many are displaying significant artistic talent.  They're excited about it.  I have plenty who want to try it already; maybe it's vanity, but I want all of my calves to pass on the first try.  I want the world to see that they're just as smart and social as anyone else."

Titus Tembe Risingdawn has thus far showed little interest in media attention, and released only a few brief remarks.  "I wish to be a bridge between the history of elephants on Earth and the future of elephants on Mars," she stated in as video released by the Martian Savanna project.  "I am eager to begin my studies, and am planning to pursue the study of history.  I wish to create a new history, one told from the elephant perspective; not an indictment of humanity for crimes against us, but a means of healing the terrible rift between our two peoples.  I wish to help my brothers and sisters on Earth to thrive and to find a way past their suffering."

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