Not so long ago, yet another well-preserved woolly mammoth was discovered, this time in France, near Paris, adding heat to the long-brewing rumors (threats? promises?) that scientists are a gnat’s eyelash from cloning one of these hairy has-beens. There are a million articles about this on the web, many of them as plumped up on naive enthusiasm as I am, and I encourage you to pursue as many of them as you have time in your busy schedule to read. It’s great stuff, all of it. Right now I’ve got about a dozen tabs open because that’s what I do–open more tabs than I have time to read, bookmark them all, read a couple, and think wistfully about all the reading I’d do if the days were just a little bit longer.
But I digress. The subject at hand is: MAMMOTH! The precise question doesn’t matter, because, if it’s about mammoths, and any question about mammoth has only one possible answer: yes.
I mean: Hell, yes.
Why are we leaving this to the Japanese, Chinese, Russians, South Koreans?
South Koreans? Granted, they have done a fine job with the Kia, that Gangham Style guy ROCKS, and they sure no how to build a DMZ–but come on! These are MAMMOTHS we’re talking about. Important shit. We’re America. We don’t trust our allies to handle the important shit.
Besides, I’m personally nervous about the motives of these folks cloning mammoths, regardless of national origin. First of all, it’s not like the Japanese have a particularly great record with large mammals. Turn your back, and they’re poking them with sharp sticks. Think about it: EVERY museum in the world has a diorama of a bunch of pissed off Asian dudes standing around poking a sad, hungry, lonely and forsaken Snuffaluffagus mammoth with nasty pointy sticks. And you know what they do to whales.
Secondly, and more importantly, WE need the Mammoth. The country is going to hell, the world is two match strikes and a clump of tinder from going up in flame, and massive climate change is leading to unprecedented numbers and severity of natural disasters. We need something to look forward to. Something to believe in. We need to see the mammoth.
Just seeing a mammoth could change everything, but imagine if we could feed the mammoth, pet the mammoth, pose for digital pictures with the mammoth, and maybe we could even ride the mammoth. I know I’d like to ride the mammoth. Hell, doesn’t every kid deserve to have his OWN woolly mammoth? I think he does. Woolly mammoths are awesome. We could breed a lot of them and finally win the war against terror. (Whew! Just in time.) They’re insanely useful.
Maybe best of all, we could use them to confuse, befuddle, but ultimately delight all the new earth whack-jobs loitering around the Creationist Museum. My long time best friend was a registered Republican for years, though he voted far to the left, because he believed “my continued registration gives them a false sense of security.” Well, imagine what a herd of woolly mammoths stumbling through their Garden of Eden display might do for morale!
We owe it to them, to our children, and to the world.