written by Marc (Zebra)
Being a zebra, I found Mr. Obamaʼs "race speech" to be exactly what this country needed to hear. Things are rarely black and white (except me, of course.) The very definitions of who is black and who is white aren't even black and white. Consider this: black people are not actually black (theyʼre shades of brown) but the term brown is reserved for people of Hispanic heritage. Meanwhile whites are not actually white (theyʼre flesh-colored) yet the infamous flesh-eating disease attacks all skin colors equally. It's very confusing.
For these reasons I believe itʼs time Americans took a page from both Mr. Obama and the Disease playbook and ignored skin color altogether. Am I white with black stripes or am I black with white stripes? What difference does it make? As Mr. Obama so elegantly pointed out in this speech, these definitions are old- fashioned and petty. Whatever the label, Iʼm the same animal on the inside. Weʼre ALL the same. A goat and a whitefish may LOOK different but inside there IS no difference. (Except that one is a warm-blooded mammal while the other has gills but letʼs not let semantics and pigeon-holing definitions throw us off track.)
Senator Obama's basic message is that we have to start looking beyond color. This is exactly the same sentiment that Paul McCarthy wrote in his song EBONY AND IVORY -- the black keys and the white keys need each other and there can be harmony as long as the black keys stay in their place. Iʼm paraphrasing. (By the way, kudos to Mr. McCarthy for not cow-towing to political correctness by putting black players into The Beatles simply because beatles are black insects.) The next time we hear the phrase, "Thatʼs a horse of a different color," let's follow Mr. Obamaʼs advice and say, "So what? Color is on the outside but inside, where it counts, all horses are the same." (Except sea horses, which have an external exoskeleton and donʼt poop grass clumps the size of tennis balls.)
I could go on but I think Iʼve made my point.
written by Alberto (eagle)
I've been the national symbol for 217 years. During that time weʼve climbed from musket-wielding colonists to the worldʼs only remaining superpower. Itʼs been a good run. Flawed as we may be at times, this nation is still THE beacon for freedom in the world and Iʼm proud to have been a part of it.
But now itʼs time to let some other animal takeover emblem duties. Consider this my two week notice. This has nothing to do with politics. This isnʼt about the war or anything like that. The simple fact is Iʼm not getting any younger. Iʼve been through an industrial revolution and two world wars. Iʼm tired. I want to do some traveling and spend more time with the grandchicks while I still can.
There are a lot of animals that could easily take my place. The condor might be nice - big, native to the country... Or maybe the turkey. You know, back when they picked me, Ben Franklin was considering the turkey. Also the buffalo. I bet either one of them would be thrilled to finally get a chance at bat.
Donʼt worry, Iʼll stick around until they find someone new. And itʼs not like Iʼm gonna disappear altogether. Iʼll still pop up here and there. Iʼll be like Walter Cronkite. But with less white on my head.