In my morning review of the day’s headlines, I came across this piece by Newsweek’s Janice Williams about a Bobcat who was kicked out of a Dollar General in Kentucky for not adhering to mandatory coronavirus prevention measures. She wasn’t wearing a mask. My initial reaction was, “This is a failure of the public education system.” My second reaction was, “I wonder if Dollar General carries waffles.” They do.
It’s too late for the current public school system to catch this problem, and in a more progressive society, I think the animal’s core rights would be called into question. Properly dealing with ignorance is becoming a bigger and bigger problem globally, and this is the perfect example of how we continue to drop the ball. Rather than giving her a chance to cover up and resume her shopping, the Bobcat was forced from the store, costing Dollar General sales, and involving the authorities when they could have been busy with far more important cases. The animal is not to blame for her ignorance, especially since masks have not been made readily available to members of her species.
I propose hiring additional employees at stores such as Dollar General to handle the assistance of the lingually challenged species in our world. This creates jobs and builds bridges between species that have almost always lived with tension existing between them, not to mention things like hunting and picnic raiding. By extending a helping hand, behaviors between the species will change and the ignorance will slowly fade, and humans and Bobcats alike will enjoy full (and safe) access to stores like Dollar General. New employees could provide masks, offer assistance in the use of the masks, and even lead people like this Bobcat to areas of interest within the store. As the relationship grows, jobs could be offered to Bobcats as well.
Rather than dwelling on the oddities and irritations associated with the 2020 US presidential election, perhaps we should look forward with hope to the future when civil rights issues such as this become the platforms on which our prospective politicians stand.