Saturday, October 26, 2002

People Off Earth Now!

Shocking news today!

No, no, not about the sudden death of a U.S. Senator and his family, or vicious Chechin terrorists threatening to broadcast the murder of 800 hostages, or father and step-son sniper teams with Islamofascist sympathies, or even mysterious attacks on military aircraft high over Helsinki.

No, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society, people take up most of the planet!

People and all their houses and cars and hospitals, schools, playgrounds, and libraries are leaving very little room for elephants, and rattlesnakes, and squawking crows, snapping turtles, poison ivy, ticks, and ferocious lions.

Of course, this study can be debunked instantly by looking at a globe and noting that the planet is mostly water. Moreover, the damn fish are hogging all that space to themselves.

Sure, the Dutch have made a valiant effort to convert as much of the ocean into land fit for beer drinkers and licensed hookers as possible, but they have a long way to go before the tuna and lamprey communities are threatened.

The study actually seems to suggest that all these people are a bad thing which is an odd conclusion to reach assuming that the study was designed, conducted, and analyzed under the supervision of people and not otters.

But I could be wrong. The pullout quote talks about saving "wild lands in pristine areas."

These "pristine" areas just happen to be the places that are even less hospitable than the places people are already taking up space like Irkutsk, Riyadh, or Melbourne.

Frankly, the sooner we clean up the "pristine" fever swamps, tundra steppes, and unheated high mountain plateaus the better. We need the room.

And anyway, what's so great about animals? They're rude, dirty, and lazy. Hell, some animals are synonymous with the sort of parasitic behavior that is not tolerated in the human world.

Fine, people take up most of the planet. I'm OK with that. Some of my best friends are people. I've learned a lot from people and many of the devices I use to read studies from the Wildlife Conservation Society were created by people. (Full Disclosure: I am a person and so are many in my family.)

But the WCS analysis of what threatens our world is woefully skewed.

It would be far more enlightening to ruminate on the fact that people take up most of the space in the Nord-Ost Theatre in Moscow, or that people take up most of the space at North Korea's Jimmy Carter Thermonuclear Device Manufacturing Plant Number 6, or that people take up most of the space in the International Space Station, although white mice might have the run of the place at the moment.

Frankly, it sounds like the people at the Wildlife Conservation Society don't get out with people all that much. If they did they might find that they're not all bad after all.

My suggestion? Sell the name of your dreary society to some college fraternity and go out and actually experience some wild life first hand.

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