Friday, July 19, 2019

Pride! Night At The Zoo

                It’s a good bet that when God told Noah to gather up the animals-- two by two-- and take them on the Ark, He was hoping that one of each kind would be a male and the other a female. Otherwise, the whole endeavor would likely have been for naught. None-the-less, the LGBTQIIA+ community would not allow God to get away with this kind of heteronormative, cis-gendered command today. Gayness is celebrated everywhere, all the time. And woe to anyone who isn’t “down” with that.                 
                Even in the animal kingdom. Case in point: The ZSL London Zoo gave itself a thorough “Pride makeover” for its special July 5th “Zoo Night” touting same-sex animal pairings…and all things gay. The zoo issued a press release stating: “On top of Zoo Nights’ packed schedule of activities, visitors will be able to learn about gender and mating in the animal kingdom at a Pride-themed talk, where they’ll discover just how common same-sex pairings are – from penguins and pandas to goats and giraffes.” The release also invited attendees to “score a hole-in-one at the Zoo’s new mini-golf course.” (I bet some of the gay animal couples would also like to score a hole-in-one. Just sayin’).
                 The zoo proudly claims it’s the home of a gay penguin “couple” named Ronnie and Reggie. It even designed a special banner for “Penguin Beach”—home of the allegedly queer penguin pair—in advance of the July 5 extravaganza. The banner read in part: “Next week’s #ZSLZooNights will be getting a #Pride makeover and our #penguins ae joining in on the celebrations! Learn more about our Pride-themed activities at the zoo & how you can join in:  #PrideInLondon #ZooLife@PrideInLondon—ZSL London Zoo.” I don’t want to know how I “can join in.” There is another, smaller banner in the penguins’ habitat that aggressively states: “Some penguins are gay. Get over it.” Note to the ZSL zoo: “I am not. Get over it.” And I don’t advertise how proud I am to be heterosexual. Or spray-paint “Cis Power!” across progressive message boards and banners. Or demand cities grant my kind carte blanche for parade routes. Etc.
                 The zoo claims Ronnie and Reggie first got together in 2014 and adopted an abandoned egg a year later, sharing parenting duties until the chick left the nest. The zoo’s website states that the bond between the two literal lovebirds “remains as strong as ever” and notes that they are “often found snuggled up in their next box together.” What’s more, the zoo says there are other same-sex couples among its 91 other penguin residents.                

                  I bet there are lesbian lynx, gay gophers, bisexual bunnies, transgender turtles and questioning koalas, too. And, it’s no wonder a group of lions is called a PRIDE! What inspirational thoughts!                 
                  Alas, The Telegraph reported on a new study, published in the journal Ethology, that found homosexual behavior in the animal kingdom only amounts to “same sex flirting” until the individuals find a mate. The study, conducted by France’s Centre for Functional and Evolutionary Ecology, found that high levels of testosterone and a relative lack of females in the colony drives “lonely” males into simulated mating displays. One of the study’s authors, Professor F. Stephen Dobson, said that the number of same sex penguin pairs was actually lower than expected. He noted that, when the colony was studied over time, all the “gay” penguins chose a heterosexual partner.    
                  What a downer. 

                  Oh well. We shall overcome.   

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