Free the Animals! (A Satire)

Written By: Kat Walls

Recently there have been some startling events regarding what once was a safe snack for children all over the world–animal crackers. “Barnum’s Animals” is a beloved treat that was named after the circus star, so it only makes sense that the animals would be portrayed in such a way. Nabisco, the company that makes animal crackers, announced recently a change in their packaging that stood on store shelves for more than 100 years. However, due to the lack of problems to discuss in the United States, the hippies of the north took it upon themselves to push for “justice,” and the company changed the design of the box due to increasing pressure from groups such as PETA and anti-zoo and circus lobbyists.

In the old box, animals can be seen on a circus wagon in cages, happy and comfortable with their young. In the newly designed box you can clearly see the animals are out of the cage and roaming freely. While this is being celebrated as a victory by PETA and other animal right groups, it brings up more questions and concerns that it solves problems. There are three major problems that cannot be ignored with the new design, which are: the animals’ young are missing, the freed animals will fall into peril, and the obvious threat towards targeted polar bears.

Northerners will disagree and say that the animals are now freed from their “inhumane” cages and may now roam and do as they please. They are also worried that seeing a caged animal will be scarring for their own children and they would much rather their children live inside a bubble wrap suit that would prevent them from growing a spine. This, of course, is not feasible because it would be a large waste of plastic. But that’s another subject. Back to the poor animals.

This brings me to problem number one. What happened to the young crackers? In the newly designed box, you can clearly see the animals are without their young. Nothing in the

picture gives you any clue as to what happened to them. Did the PETA people take and eat them? Were they used for college mascots? Animals in cages with their young with create a better learning environment for the young, and eventually lead to more babies and advance the species. How can the species advance if they are roaming freely without their babies? When the animals get old and dies, no others will replace them.

Secondly, if the animals aren’t in a pen, they will certainly get lost. Studies done by amateur scientists have shown that animals kept in cages never get lost. There has never been a recorded case where an animal got lost in its cage. When animals roam free, they take their chances. They can get a thorn stuck in their foot or eat something poisonous. Many animals have been hurt running with an unregulated herd and stepping in hidden holes. This has frequently led to those animals being severely injured. Animals kept in cages very rarely have twisted their ankles. In recent years police and wildlife control officers have received more and more calls with human and animal interactions. Videos flood the internet of human to animal interactions that are thought to be cute or funny, but very quickly turn to disaster. Mountain lions have roamed into backyards, and bears have even broken car windows because they smelled food. Children are not safe if wild animals can roam their neighborhood streets. Animals belong in cages for safety reasons.

Lastly, and possibly the most importantly, let’s talk about the polar bears. With the increasing threat of climate change, polar bears will not be able to survive in the wild, as Barnum’s boxes promote. Their once abundant habitat and environment is shrinking as polar ice caps melt and disappear at an alarming rate. If polar bears are not kept in cages, they will disappear—go extinct—vanish. As you may notice, there are no polar bears on the newly designed box. My theory is that the PETA people recognized that the bears died because of climate change. They should be kept safely in a cage, as we all know global warming is a deadly threat impending on our ordinary lives.

Barnum’s animal crackers have held a special place in the hearts of children for many, many years. This recent box design change has been quite a shock to them. These, now young adults have had a piece of their childhood taken away from them, too soon after the “Toys R Us” blow. It has been quite traumatic, and all of us millennials and Gen Z’s should rise in protest. We all need our crackers. We need our animals to be healthy snacks for our immediate gratification and consumption. All of us in daycares everywhere need to remember these poor animals. This is a cause worth getting behind, and we should throw all our energy into making sure there is justice for these discriminated-against, underprivileged, attacked and underappreciated animals. Free the crackers from the tyranny of PETA! Free them by putting them back in cages where they belong! Free the polar bears! And bring me some animal crackers while you’re at it.