ANTHROPOMORPHISATION

I know that this is not exactly the most important story in the world today but there is a serious point to it.

I saw this story…

Shock at polar bear’s carp kill

Germany’s celebrity polar bear Knut has triggered a new controversy by fishing out 10 live carp from his moat and killing them in front of visitors.

Critics say Berlin Zoo should not have put live fish inside Knut’s enclosure. But German media report that the carp were put there to eat up algae.

There is speculation that hand-reared Knut killed the carp just for fun.

First of all, I don’t find it particularly shocking that a polar bear killed something, do you?

Second, you shouldn’t be having the bears there in the first place. I understand that it was rejected by its mother (the sort of thing that the supposedly civilised romans used to do a lot of – they dumped their unwanted babies onto a big pile in the city and left them to die) but its mother shouldn’t have been there in the first place.

Third, making the thing a celebrity means that once the public falls out of love with it it has alcohol addiction, the Betty Ford clinic and the inevitable comeback tour to come.

But the story goes on…

The Frankfurter Allgemeine news website reports that Knut “senselessly murdered the carp”, fishing them out, playing with them and then leaving the remains.

IT IS A F*CKING POLAR BEAR! What — do — you — expect — it — to — do? Keep them in a glass bowl and feed them little bits of that smelly stuff every day? Give them names? Take them for a swim around their mutual little prison?

If it wasn’t dead because its mother had left it or if its mother hadn’t been stuck on some f*cking rock next to a swimming pool in Germany somewhere it would/should be jumping about in the arctic giving seals something to worry about or indeed, fish. Just because the humans feed it it is unlikely to make its natural instincts disappear.

It’s all similar to something I watched in a David Attenborough program about how killer whales appear to play with their prey before finishing them off. I emphasise ‘appear’ because I would not be so presumptuous to assume I know what a killer whale is thinking. However, one of the commenters saw fit to leave a comment (I don’t know if that is exactly the right link to get the comment) that they had ‘lost all respect for killer whales’.

Behave.

I hate this kind of story because these things are not evil, that is giving human ‘qualities’ to something that is not human. It is not like other humans where you at least have a reference point. Even the sensory data it receives will be so different from ours that we can’t tell how it physically interprets the world around it, or at we least we can’t really feel and know what it is like.

You don’t know what it is thinking so you can’t tell if it is being an arsehole or not.

9 comments

  1. I bet half the people who complained have a cat and have never overly worried that it appears to play with mice and birds before dispatching them.

  2. This is the dumbest thing I’ve ever seen. Absolutely certifies the human race as the dumbest species on the planet.

    ‘Under German laws live vertebrates like fish are not allowed to be fed to animals.’

    Germany you’re really smart!

    I caught a carp once, it was a disgusting slimy piece of garbage. I feel bad for Knut.

    Save the carp? Go kill yourself.

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