People for the Protection of Animals is in favor of humans spoiling ants’ picnics.
A story posted on PETA’s website is titled “Humane Ant Control Methods,” and when you peel away the nitty and get down to the gritty, what it advocates is starving the little critters to death.
PETA doesn’t want anyone squashing ants, but it doesn’t mind taking away their food supply and sending them off to famish alongside the trail like the Donner Party.
Here’s how PETA puts it:
“The relationship between you and the ants in and around your home may be less than mutually beneficial.” Duh! (The “duh!” is mine, not PETA’s.)
It goes on:
“The best way to keep ants from entering your home is to remove sources of attraction.”
That’s PETA-talk for “food.”
What else could ants possibly be attracted to? Your Barco-lounger and wide-screen TV?
“Keep your kitchen clean,” whines PETA, sounding more and more like my Aunt Mildred. “Do not leave crumbs or garbage around. Keep all food, including companion-animal (PETA-talk for “pet”) food in tightly sealed containers.”
My companion-animal, Buddy the Lab, doesn’t leave any crumbs scattered around. He eats everything in sight. Including ants.
PETA says there is a product called Orange Guard that is non-toxic and organic and drives ants away.
But do not – and PETA can’t stress this enough – do not apply Orange Guard directly onto ants “because it destroys the waxy coating of the insects’ respiratory systems, causing the ants to suffocate.”
No one wants to hear a bunch of de-coated ants wheezing and gasping.
PETA advocates shooing away the hungry ants to somewhere else. But where? Like most things PETA, therein lies the moral quandary.
If I chase a hungry ant out of my kitchen, denying it a few crumbs of subsistence, to where does it turn? To my neighbor’s kitchen?
But suppose the famished ant trudges across the lawn, climbs my neighbor’s steps and is confronted with another blast of Orange Guard repellent? Now what?
I suppose as a last resort the starving ant could stumble onto the sidewalk and try to scrounge up a dead bug for dinner, risking incurring the wrath of PETA by eating bug meat.
PETA doesn’t want us to feed them or squash them or spray them, so what are we to do with the little pests?
That’s where PETA gets a bit hazy, the way it did about the fate of the pesky fly that President Barack Obama swatted during a press conference. (Not to be confused with Wolf Blitzer.).
PETA got its beansprouts in a bind over the flattened fly. A spokesperson said it should have been trapped and (carefully) set free outdoors. Of course it would have simply waited until someone left the White House’s screen door open and – like Wolf Blitzer -- buzzed right back inside to pester the President.
Does PETA advocate creating a new Fly Catch & Release Federal Agency? It’s a bit vague on the details, just as it is about the plight of the hungry ants.
Maybe it’s time to start a new PETA organization: People for the Ethical Treatment of Ants.
Brother, can you spare a crumb