October 2010

Elephants Aren’t Kiddie Rides

When you think of native animals of Kentucky, what comes to mind? Horses, maybe? Farm animals? Typical wild animals like bunnies, deer, and other woodland critters? I’m sure elephants don’t come to mind. The last time I checked, elephants weren’t listed as a native species of Kentucky. That’s why it’s so bizarre that the state is considering allowing elephants to be used as a kiddie ride in upcoming state fairs after a ban on the practice.

Stop the Bison Slaughter

Have you ever seen a bison up close? They are such incredible animals. They’re like our own American elephants—not as big, no, and without the trunks, but just as awe-inspiring and majestic. To me, bison are as close as we’re going to get to some incredible creatures of myth—and they look like they’re right out of a storybook.

It pains me to know that these animals are used as food (just as much as it pains me that any animals are looked upon as food sources rather than fellow sentient beings, as if they have no personalities or lives of their own—or, despite that they do, theirs are not as important as our own), and it pains me to know that we systematically kill the animals for no reason at all as well.

Bee Mystery Solved

Scientists and laypeople alike have been scrambling to come up with the source of Colony Collapse Disorder since it was first given a name in 2006 or so.  The mystery has finally been solved, thanks to a multi-disciplinary team, a joint collaboration effort between the US Army and the University of Montana. 

Colony Collapse Disorder has become our culture's tabula rasa, a blank slate upon which we can project our fears of the strange and unknown.  When causes as diverse as "the proliferation of cell phones" and "High Fructose Corn Sugar" get involved, you know you're in for some confusion.

In truth, Colony Collapse Disorder has primarily stood as a failure of America's science reporting more than anything else.  Although most Americans have heard that "the bees are disappearing," few are aware that honeybees are a domesticated non-native species like cows and chickens, or that CCD's failure numbers are not nearly as devastating as the press has made them out to be.