Monday, July 25, 2011

Gimme Shelter

We're coming to you today from the Bait and Switch Department here in the marbled halls of IM Central. B&S is a division of the I'm From The Government And I'm Here To Help Corporation, in conjunction with You Must Have Heard Us Wrong, LLC.

It seems the good people of St. Louis have been contributing their pennies to a fund in support of the local animal shelter. Now, you would think this is a nice thing the folks are doing to help out the strays and you would be right, but it seems this outpouring of community goodwill has caused no small amount of consternation among civic betters.
City leaders are trying to come up with a compromise over what to do with a quarter of a million dollars donated for an animal shelter.
OK, we think we can help you out here city leaders. See, the money was donated to the animal shelter by people who thought they were donating to the animal shelter so they could, you know, help animals and stuff. With a shelter. So why not give the money to the animal shelter because, like, that's where everybody thought it was going and whatnot. Pretty complicated we know. Would you like us to explain it again? We could use smaller words.
When the idea of building a new city shelter fell by the wayside, the mayor and others supported the donated money going to Stray-Rescue, which has already been performing shelter duties.
Whoa! That mayor guy, he's one sophisticated problem solver, no? When you don't have a shelter, you give the money to the shelter you have, not the shelter you want because it's still...wait for it...a shelter! See, this is why we never went into politics. What kind of highly developed analytical skills must a person have to be able to figure out  what to do in situations like this? Our hat's off you good sir, or madam.
A committee voted down a proposal to give the money to the non-profit Stray Rescue. Some alderman expressed concerns in a committee meeting Thursday, including accountability for the money and what would happen to strays once the no-kill shelter fills up.
 Hmm...guess we didn't realize the mayor was just going to take a suitcase full of cash over to the shelter. We thought the typical safeguards and policies the city uses for all its money transactions would apply to this transaction as well. And as for the shelter filling up, well, see the idea is you bring the animals into a safe place, then invite people to come in and look at them. They go "Awww look at the nice doggy," or "look at the nice kitty," then you say, "Would you like to take that little cutey home with you?" They say "sure" and you have this thing called "Turnover" which means a new space opens up. That's why it's called a "shelter" and not a storage facility. Any questions? We could explain that again with smaller words.
Alderman Quincy Troupe says the City of St. Louis should start killing dogs again or maybe donate them to science. He was one of the 'no' votes, denying a quarter of a million donated dollars to the new Stray Rescue facility.
Yeah, well,  it seems Alderman Troupe is a little unclear on the concept of "shelter." See, the idea is to get the animals off the street and adopt them out--for a fee of course, so you're taking this liability of animals wandering around the streets and turning it into an asset as people pay to take them off your hands. So you "invest" in a shelter and you get a "return" in a continuing stream of adoption fees. Now, we realize for a fellow whose philosophy it shoot first and try to understand the problem later, that might be a bit of an intellectual leap, so let us put this a little more simply: You're a heartless dweeb with the intellectual acumen of an eggplant.
Alderman Troupe said, "People, the dog lovers, took the position the dogs are more important than public safety."
 {Sigh}Wrong again Alderman. See the shelter actually contributes to public safety because...guess what?  Less strays out amongst to public. Plus when people know there is a place they can give up a pet they're less likely to just abandon it which means...ready? Less strays. And less homeless dogs out wandering the streets where they might get hurt, or hurt someone makes the public safer.
The Health Department says Stray Rescue is taking more dogs off the streets than the city ever did, while housing them humanely and getting more people to adopt them. Alderman Troupe doesn't believe the packs of dogs are really gone.
[Troupe] "How have some just mathematically disappeared?"
[Investigator Chris Hayes ] “So you're arguing with the city's numbers.”
[Troupe] “I'm saying the city, this outfit, is abdicating its responsibility to catch, secure, these mad, crazy crazed dogs.”
"Mad, crazy crazed dogs?" You been watching those werewolf movies again? We told you, they're just movies. Yeah yeah, we know, the neighbor's Shih Tzu barks and growls at you every time you walk by, but that's not because it's mad, crazy crazed, it's because dogs are good judges of character.
[Hayes] “So the solution is to kill them?” [Troupe] “If that's what it means, yes.”
[Hayes] “And I understand you said shoot them?”
[Troupe] “I didn't say shoot them.  I said by any means necessary.”
[Hayes] “Including shooting them?”
[Troupe] “I said by any means necessary. When the police are attacked by humans they kill them don't they?”
Actually, no, the police generally don't kill people who attack them. They tase them. You really need to quit watching Walker, Texas Ranger reruns and get out more often.

Oh, and by the way, there are mad, crazy crazed cats that the shelter would help as well as the dogs who scare you so much. Not to mention the people who adopt them.
The psychologists surveyed 217 people on such variables as depression, loneliness, self-esteem, activity level and intra-personal relations with other people to determine whether there was any difference between the responses of pet owners and people who do not have pets in their lives. Their finding: pet owners tend to be less lonely, have more self-esteem, get more exercise, are more extroverted and were less fearful about closeness to other people.
"...less lonely, have more self-esteem, get more exercise, are more extroverted and less fearful about closeness to other people." Hmm...Hey Alderman, you ever think about owning a pet?

1 comment:

Nancy said...

As a St. Louisan, I say Great Post!