After Obama awesomely swatted down a fly during a CNBC interview earlier this week, gonzo advocacy group PETA condemned the action, and sent him a device with which he could trap flies in the future and release them in the outside world where they could later go on to bother another human, or worse, an adorable deer. We’ve been thinking about this all day. PETA was much more tongue-in-cheek with this publicity grab than they normally are — apparently the consequences for running up and trying to throw a bucket of red paint at the president are more dire than doing the same for, say, Anna Wintour. But still, they’re playing a risky game. By siding with flies, they’re really extending their reach to all living creatures except plants, bacteria, fungi, and protists. Now, sure, you’re thinking, PETA people don’t eat meat or fish, and they probably try to even avoid harming gross things like snakes or rats or that squishy little orphaned alien from Flight of the Navigator (it’s still on Earth, you know). But by opening the qualifications for their protection to all invertebrates, they’re setting a pretty impossible standard. What about daddy longlegs and earthworms and ant lions — things you kill merely by moving around in the world? And what about things that attack humans, like leeches and mosquitoes and water bugs? (They’re attacking us with their looks, okay?) Do they really think they can go through life without harming any of those? And forget about microscopic protozoa, which you are probably killing right now, in your office chair, just by sweating and blinking.
Just stick to cute puppies and cows, okay, PETA? We don’t want to ever have to Google “Animal Kingdom” ever again, because it just serves to remind us of how much more knowledgeable about the world we were when we were 9.