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Thursday, October 16, 2008

Our Cradle

posted by on October 16 at 9:52 AM

For those whose happiness is all the more intense when exploring the ins and out of the cradle of our type of mind
…that cradle being the Victorian world of trains, detectives, factories, Dickens, industrial cities, steam power and so on, you (as I did) will love this little detail in a BBC report about an MP who wants to establish a law that bans the keeping of primates as pets:

The Shropshire MP said he would use his Ten Minute Rule Bill, which he will present in the Commons on Tuesday afternoon, to highlight why the practice of keeping the animals had no place in modern society.

“Are we a modern country or are we a country stuck in Victorian times that likes to keep primates in confined spaces in order to entertain us,” he told BBC News.

To be totally unstuck from Victorian times is to change precisely what it is that makes us what we are now.

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I think about something similar when I see all the urban dwellers who keep large dogs that were bred to herd sheep in apartments or other confined spaces. They seem to imagine that we are still living a rural, agrarian lifestyle where those would be appropriate pets, without noticing that their animals are being made neurotic by their confinement and stultifyingly boring circumstances.

Posted by flamingbanjo | October 16, 2008 10:55 AM

To be totally unstuck from Victorian times is to change precisely what it is that makes us what we are now.


Posted by Bustler | October 16, 2008 11:08 AM

The UK won't let citizens keep primates as pets, but they will create an enormous Gov. database to capture every email sent, phone call made, and website visited by UK citizens, for governmental use, of course.

Seems a little bit contradictory to me.

Posted by treacle | October 16, 2008 11:15 AM

zoos are also leftover from a victorian mindset & should be ended. go watch the wolves pacing at woodland park if you don't agree.

Posted by max solomon | October 16, 2008 11:43 AM

...So your argument is basically that keeping primates as pets is the linchpin of our modern civilized way of life? I'm sure you'll go far with that one.

Posted by Electra | October 16, 2008 11:47 AM

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