October 21, 2003
President's Dog Barney To Be Stuffed And Sold In Malaysia; Move Meant To Publicize Historic Improvement In Endangered Animals Act
Killing, Skinning, Exporting Endangered Animals Will Help Conservation Efforts, Says Bush; Getting Rid Of Barney Just A "Fringe Benefit"
President Bush has announced plans to ship the stuffed remains of Barney, his "beloved" pet dog, in order to publicize a "bold new step forward" in conservation under the Endangered Animals Act.
For the first time, administration officials propose to change the interpretation of a critical passage in the Act which would allow the resumption of killing, skinning, and trade in endangered animals and their "parts." This will, in turn, help to raise funds to "conserve those precious animals," said Milly Tiddly of the US. Dpeartment of Agriculture.
Tiddly said enormous amounts of funds, perhaps as much as "three or four hundred dollars a skin" could be raised overseas if the U.S. relaxes its interpretation of "ruthlessly exploiting endangered animals for outright profit" under the terms of the Act, which was signed into law by Richard M. Nixon during a lull in illegal wiretapping.
"Permitting trade in animal parts will be good for endangered animals," said Tiddly. "Let's say your Asian elephant's trunk is kind of bent and you need a new one," she said. "You can just pick one up over the internet."
Critics of the change remarked that killing animals seems to an unlikely way to conserve and protect rare species.
"That's exactly what you'd expect these folks to say," said Tiddly. "They can't see the loris for the fleas."
Posted by Tom Burka at 12:10 PM