I live in a semi-suburban apartment complex — I can actually on a good day throw a baseball into Washington, D.C.
It was a brutal day on Saturday — it snowed all day and cars were completely covered and blocked. The word was to stay off the road.
I was looking out the window when I saw a bunny scurry across the parking lot. Now, the nearest park is several blocks away and I couldn’t figure where the furry little animal started the journey.
I ran down to see if there was anything I could do, but by the time I got down there the bunny was gone. In retrospect, there was nothing I could have done anyway, but the thought of the animal in the freezing snow was breaking me up.
I am about to repeat an oft-used moral, one that I learned years ago when reading “The Canterbury Tales” — if you can’t be kind to animals, how can you be expected to respect human beings?
Famed modern German philosopher Immanuel Kant, summed it up as follows:
“He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals.”
Here’s a quick tale to emphasize the point:
I once had a boss that can only be described as being pure evil and extremely paranoid. So paranoid in fact — and I am not making this up — he would use a mirror on a stick to look under his Jeep when he left work to make sure no one had tampered with the vehicle.
This man also once told me that my writers had to rework a newsletter that he had already approved and they would have to come in on Thanksgiving to do the work.
I complained vehemently to no avail, but told him I could not do that to my colleagues and would come in and do the work myself.
This man hated dogs and made it very clear that he did. He once told me that he got a thrill out of calling over strays — and then kicking them. I was flabbergasted.
One weekend I brought my mixed-breed Ralph to the office, since no one was there. He for some reason entered the above-mentioned boss’ office — and proceeded to pee on his rug.
You see, Ralph sensed the obvious.
And, I hope the bunny made it to wherever he/she was going safely.