The recent glut of violent chimp stories in the news can only, we feel, mean one of two things.
1. Travis made chimps trendy and now the media is cashing in by publishing every monkey story that crosses its path
2. Chimps have truly begun to pose a credible threat to our national security.
The study of a Swedish chimp named Santino, released yesterday by the journal Current Biology, would seem to prove the latter true. For the past eleven years, the journal reports, Santino has been stockpiling rocks in his island compound at the zoo in Furuvik, north of Stockholm, rocks that he then unleashes in a fury at the human visitors who come to view him and his ape friends. Santino doesn’t ever attack the other chimpanzees, Lund University Ph.D. student Mathias Osvath, who wrote the study, told the AP. Only the humans. Fortunately, Santino has extremely poor aim. For now.
Why does Santino hate us? Osvath attempts to explain:
“It is extremely frustrating for him that there are people out of his reach who are pointing at him and laughing,” Osvath said. “It cannot be good to be so furious all the time.”
But we think it’s more than that: We stand for freedom and they hate it. We are rich and they envy us. We are clothed and they are naked. Santino is clearly the Osama bin Laden of monkeys. His aim is bad now but he is training; the point is he can plan in advance and it is only a matter of time before he organizes the rest of the monkeys to take the Ultimate Action: A massive poop-throwing campaign. Cover!
Spontaneous planning for future stone throwing by a male chimpanzee [Science Direct via NPR]
The Politics of Rage: Why They Hate Us [Fareed Zakaria]