Saturday, October 6, 2007

Are you a nice snake or a mean snake?

My daughter often asks me if a particular animal is a mean or nice animal, often while we are visiting the zoo. My nigh invariable answer is the animal in question is not mean, but in fact is dangerous.

This is not a philosophical distinction or a matter of semantics.

Cruelty and meanness are human characteristics.

Our dubious honor within the animal kingdom is we are stewards of cruelty, visited on our own kind, as well as our environment.


1 comment:

ddhazlitt said...

Speaking of snakes, Darryl was bit by a rattler this summer. Evie, he wasn't a mean snake, he was quite dangerous and he didn't like being stepped on.
Darryl is fine. The rattler decided not to envenomate. Most likely becasue he was hungry and wanted Darryl to just get off him.