It is no longer open season on those disgusting creatures that are the scourge of life in the Big Apple, to name one present-day urban center. No, the reference is not to Mayor Michael Bloomberg and his crew. It is to cockroaches.
A May 13 article in the Washington Post’s Health & Science page argued that some care needs to be taken before injudiciously squashing a cockroach under your boot heel. Some roaches, author Brian Palmer argues, are beneficial to the chain of life in much the way that bacteria living in human digestive tracts are beneficial to humans.
But the endorsement of these least of God’s creatures doesn’t end there. A letter to the editor on May 17 (h/t James Taranto) takes Palmer’s humble assertions into a whole new realm of insanity. The letter’s author, Paula Moore, identifies herself as “a senior editor at the PETA Foundation.”
Moore shares the findings of her research into cockroaches (katsarida), which emphasizes their “many admirable attributes”:
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Studies have shown that cockroaches can recognize individual members of their family, they live together in closely bonded groups, and they make collective decisions, about where to seek shelter, for instance, that will benefit the entire clan. They also ‘talk’ to one another about good sources of food and prefer to dine in groups rather than alone. In other words, cockroaches, unlike many people, cooperate with and are civil to one another in order to get things done.
Now if only the cockroaches living in Washington (aka the federal government) could follow katsarida’s lead, we’d really be getting somewhere.