Heading back from the Atchafalaya we had to stop to get gas. The gas station at the exit had a big sign which said “TIGER,” which I presumed was just a local filling station’s way of copying Exxon, which used (uses?) a tiger as its mascot. But this was Louisiana, of course, so it had to be more insane than that. “Oh my God,” Randy said. “I’ve heard of this place. I never knew it was here.”
At the gas station, in a large cage, was a live tiger. Of course there was. It was Louisiana. The tiger was called “Tony,” and apparently it had been the subject of political controversy: animal rights activists wanted the tiger out of there.
Everywhere there were signs claiming that Tony was happy and loved and so forth. He certainly didn’t look abused – he was fast asleep when I saw him – but of course a cage at a gas station is no place for a Bengal tiger. (Then again, a Manhattan apartment is no place for a kitty-cat either, nor is alone all day in an empty home any way for a dog to live). Tony had apparently become a flashpoint for the “culture wars”: you could get t-shirts that said
ANIMAL RIGHTS ACTIVISTS
taste like chicken
THERE’S A PLACE FOR ALL GOD’S CREATURES
right next to the biscuits and gravy
and so forth. Angry signs told the story:
Animal Rights Organizations Like ALDF, PETA, And HSUS Want To Ascribe Equal Rights To Animals. We Will Lose Property Rights To Own Any Animals. Animal Rights Terrorists Are Anti-Hunting, Anti-Fishing, Anti-Circus, And Anti-Caging. We Will No Longer Be Able To Use Animals For Entertainment, Horse Drawn Buggies, Hunt Or Raise Them For Food, Cage Them, Or For Medical Research. Animal Rights Activists Are Vegetarian And Their Ultimate Goal Is No Meat On Our Plates.
The anger, the sense of victimhood, the demonizing of the other side – all very interesting. For more visit their site.