— Jewel Akens
Officials on Bald Head Island are working with university researchers to see if they can use contraceptives to limit the deer population there.
Now that’s a wild use of the taxpayers’ hard-earned dollars: Birth control for deer.
Is this really a good idea?
What’s next, parenting classes for squirrels? Smoking-cessation programs for badgers? Wood Antabuse for beavers who just don’t know when enough is enough?
Researchers told the Wilmington Star-News they have started fitting deer with radio collars, an important first step in gauging the feasibility of using contraceptives.
The collars are tracking devices, to see if the deer are staying on the island or migrating across the shoals to southern New Hanover County — where they presumably cruise the singles bars.
This research will cost the village more than $60,000. And that’s even before they start doling out birth control to the herd.
I don’t think the deer will stand still for this. I can’t imagine the method they’ll use — these reps from Planned Animalhood — and I’m not sure I want to know.
Giant corks? Blocks of Saltpeter airlifted into the forest?
Will they resort to scare tactics, nailing big posters to trees warning about the dangers of unprotected sex and the ramifications of spreading Lyme Disease?
I guess I understand the need — I was young once. I suppose looking into those big doe eyes must be an overwhelming temptation. I imagine it’s difficult to stay in control of your emotions when nubile whitetails are fawning all over you.
Hey, let’s face it, animals can be downright randy — wild and voracious.
Seriously, have you ever seen the show “When Animals Attack!”? Imagine that fury unleashed during an intimate hook-up, under the birch trees near the babbling brook.
But there has to be a simpler, cheaper solution. Can’t these amorous deer just take a cold shower like the rest of us?
I’d rather have my tax dollars spent on new roads or better water quality than trying to concoct some tonic to extinguish Bambi’s libido.
Go ahead and call me a prude, but I think birth control for deer is a big mistake that will undoubtedly lead to promiscuity among the younger deer.
It’s like condoning the act, like yelling into the forest our approval, our encouragement to copulate.
We might as well be telling the animal kingdom: “It’s OK to have sex!”
Next thing you know the antsy deer will be staying out all night, indulging in underage drinking at backwoods keggers, smoking and swearing and probably worse.
Bambi will wander in after curfew with a nose ring and an attitude. And who needs that?
It’s just morally and ethically wrong, in my opinion.
Why don’t we let our young deer play with guns, or drive a car before they’re of age? We don’t because there have to be limits. There have to be laws. There have to be rules.
As I write these words I can’t help hearing the song “Home On the Range” inside my head ... “where the deer and the antelope play ...”
And the lyrics are telling: “where seldom is heard, a discouraging word.”
That’s the big problem in today’s liberally permissive world: our lax attitude, our moral compass spinning like a ceiling fan in summer.
There is seldom a discouraging word. Instead of investing all of this time and money into birth control for the deer, we should be teaching them the joys of abstinence, the treasure of virginity.
Our young deer ought to be told of these old fashioned yet rock solid values — values that sadly we’ve strayed from.
It’s OK to wait. That ought to be our message.
And in the meantime ... anybody ever heard of a thing called a fence?
That is all.
— John Charles Robbins can be reached at 739-4322, Ext. 122, or at email@example.com.