Save our Rats

Written by Harold McNeill on January 18th, 2015. Posted in Tim Hortons Morning Posts


Save our Rats

“Save our Rats”, “Save our Rats”
The chant is gaining strength outside the Oak Bay Municipal Hall

January18, 2915:  Headline news in the Times Colonist today: “Activists to cast eyes over deer cull in Oak Bay

An earlier article in the Times Colonist was titled: “Killing deer is not pretty, Metchosin mayor warns.”

The ongoing discussion of whether ”to cull or not to cull” seems to inspire considerable debate. Some have felt the ‘rat’ should be given the same consideration as deer and rabbits. Personally, I would not kill an animal unnecessarily, but will admit I have happily culled a few rats over my time in West Saanich. I have also killed animals for food (Lynn and I ran a small farm for several years). For those who hunt and kill a deer, moose, rabbit or other animal and then put the meat in the freezer, I have no problem, but go out and kill a grizzly, mountain sheep or other animal living in the wilderness just for the thrill of it or to gain trophy, I have a problem.

Close to 100% of people I know, except for a few vegetarians, vegans and others (like our friend Andrew), eat beef, pork, chicken, duck and a hundred other kinds of animal and bird products that cover our grocery store shelves. Those poor animals and birds are often raised and then killed in rather nasty ways, yet we really don’t give a damn as we just want the end product that is nicely wrapped in plastic.

Back on the farm, believe me, we often came to love a cow, pig, sheep, chicken or even an ugly ducking just as you might love your dog, cat or horse, We once had to tell the kids (Jay, Kari, Christine and Sean) we had sold the steer and bought other meat as there was no way they were going to eat “Roast Ghost” for dinner, Ghost being the name we had given to that poor steer now residing on our plates. We had to lie as we didn’t want the kids picketing the driveway with their friends, besides it was to late to save our friend, Ghost.

Photo: University of Victoria Groundskeeper removes rabbit from UVIC woods. The man suggested people have been contributing to the problem by dropping off unwanted rabbits and then overfeeding them as is the case in the one he is carrying away.

In some of the worst cases, we will cull other humans by the hundreds of thousands if we think our cause is just (we cull until one side wins or we reach a stalemate and both sides call it quits). Two World Wars are good examples. We don’t even need consensus to carry out this cull if our Government just decides to jump in as did the US and others in Viet Nam and Iraq. Both those wars ended in a stalemate, but not until tens of thousands of  innocent men, woman and children were killed during the cull. Many were “collateral damage” in these various wars, but that was (is) the price of carrying out a human cull.. Perhaps if we just viewed deer, rabbits and seals as people, we would not feel so squeamish about carrying out the cull.

So let’s not get so uptight about the loss of a few deer or rabbits. If you think they are infringing upon your property rights, just quietly and without fanfare do them in or arrange to have them deported to an animal sanctuary in Texas.

If you disagree, then I ask: “What do you think about rats? Don’t rats have just as much right to your protection as does Bambi, Peter Rabbit and those cuddly, innocent looking, baby seals?”   I bet Sarah MacLaughlin, would never be caught carrying a sign that read “Save our Rats”.

Cheers,

Harold

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Comments (1)

  • March 1, 2016 at 8:26 pm |

    Haha, love it! We should probably eat rats and rabbits rather than beef. Also I’ve noticed that there are a lot less pests where dogs are not kept on leashes.

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Comments

  • Andrew Dunn

    May 14, 2019 |

    Thank you so much for all your help thus far Harold, aka. Tractor guy! I could not have done without you!

  • Harold McNeill

    April 25, 2019 |

    I find it interesting to contemplate how a small community evolves in general isolation from the rest of the world. We have a similar situation in the northern communities in Canada to which access is limited. The inclusion of the world wide web and mass media has changed things, but these communities are still left pretty much to their own devices when it comes to personal interaction.

  • Harold McNeill

    March 19, 2019 |

    Hi Dave. Not that I am aware and I have a fairly comprehensive family tree for the McNeill side of the family. I will pull it up and scan. Cheers, Harold. Great chatting with you and I will give Ben a nudge.

  • Dave Cassels

    March 16, 2019 |

    Were you related to Guy McNeill who owned the Bruin Inn in St. Albert in the late 40’s or early 50’s? Guy was a close friend of my father-in-law who was the first President of the Royal Glenora Club. My phone number is 780 940 1175. Thank you.

  • Harold McNeill

    March 15, 2019 |

    So glad you found the story and enjoyed. Indeed, they were memorable times. I did a fair amount of searching but never managed to contact any of the Murffit kids. However, it was neat to make contact with the Colony and someone I knew from back in the day. I have enjoyed writing these stories from back in the 1940s and 50s and have made contact with a lot of friends from those early years. I will give you a call over the weekend. Cheers, Harold

  • Yvonne (Couture) Richardson

    March 7, 2019 |

    I enjoyed your story. I too, lived in Pibroch in 1951, as my parents owned the hotel there. I was a very close friend of Bonnie Murfitt at the time. I moved to Edmonton in 1952, however, and have not seen her since. I would like to be in touch with you to talk about your story. My email is listed above and my phone number is 780-475-3873.

  • Laureen Kosch/Patry

    March 5, 2019 |

    I grew up in Pibroch and would not trade those years for anything. “ Kids don’t know how to play anymore” Never was a truer statement made. During the summer we were out the door by 8am, home for lunch, and back when it got dark. For the most part our only toys were our bikes and maybe a baseball mitt. I will never forget the times when all the kids got together in “Finks field” for a game of scrub baseball. Everybody was welcome, kids from 8 to 18. I didn’t know it then but I guess I had a childhood most dream of. Drove thru town last summer. It all looked a lot smaller.

  • Harold McNeill

    January 13, 2019 |

    Well, my dear, it’s that time again. How the years fly by and the little ones grow but try as you may you will have a hard time catching up to your Daddy. Lots of love young lady and may your day be special
    Love, Dad

  • Harold McNeill

    January 5, 2019 |

    Guess what? My response went to the Spam folder. Hmm, do you suppose the system is trying to tell me something?

  • Harold McNeill

    January 5, 2019 |

    Thanks, Terrance. Your comment came through but went to the Spam folder. Have pulled it out and approved. Can you send another on this post to see if you name is now removed from Spam? I’m not sure why it does that. Cheers, Harold