You must not know how useful elephants are in parts of the world when it comes to doing the really hard work.<quoted text>
Elephants are fat, gassy and greedy. They hog up the water and vegetation leaving as little as possible for other animals.
As for the donkey, it was a useful farm animal well into the 19th century. The elephant is distinctly non-American.
But donkey's are useful as pack animals, true.