From the Some Animals Are More Equal Than Others file:
One of my classes is studying population density and population distribution. How living things compete for resources. How some show an exponential growth curve, while others exhibit logistic growth until carrying capacity is reached. Being kids, their minds wander. A mention of a specific animal brings a tale of their own experience.
"I almost ran over a turtle, but I swerved at the last minute."
"Dude, my buddy runs over them on purpose. He swerves to hit them."
"That's not very safe."
"Yeah. They'll pop your tire!"
"I almost hit a squirrel. I'm glad it ran away at the last minute."
I had to interject. "When you're driving, sometimes it's safer to keep going in the same direction, at the same speed, even if it makes you hit a squirrel. You could swerve and hit another car head-on. Or you could slam on your brakes, and get rear-ended by the car behind you. Don't worry about the squirrel. There'll be four more born to take its place."
"Way to go, Mrs. Hillbillly Mom. Why don't you just say, 'If a person is in the road, just keep going. Another one will be born to take his place.'"
"Oh, come on. You know it's not the same thing. Animals have adapted to lose some of their offspring. Mother Nature has planned ahead. They're all not going to live until they die of old age."
"Well, it shouldn't matter. You should be careful not to kill them."
Give me a break. These same kids would be the first to screech, "A ROACH! A ROACH! KILL IT!" Yeah. They're not going to encourage me to scoop up a roach on a piece of paper, and let it go out the window. Same way with spiders. And Sweet Gummi Mary forbid that they see a scorpion or snake in the building, which have been all the rage down at my end of the hall this year.
Kids. If they had their way, all the cute animals would be hobbling around on canes, gumming gruel, dragging oxygen tanks behind them, playing gin rummy in the old creature's home.