By Bill Steigerwald
“Polar Bear Manifesto”
U.S. CAPITOL BUILDING
With a bang the Senate hearing room’s double-doors suddenly flew open. A SWAT team of 12 Navy SEALs in full riot gear and body armor stormed in, knelt down and aimed their MP5 submachine guns at Grandpa.
As the SEALs nodded to each other and took aim at Grandpa’s chest, a desperate voice behind them in the hallway cried out.
“Don’t shoot,” shouted Anderson Cooper, as he and a CNN cameraman rushed in. “Not until I get the exclusive interview.”
Grandpa stayed cool. He had a dozen TV cameras pointed at him and he knew they and Anderson Cooper were his best chance to avoid being shot to death.
“Senator Franken?” Grandpa asked over his shoulder without moving a muscle. “Do you really want the whole world to see a talking polar bear killed inside the U.S. Capitol Building on live television?”
“Um, I’m not sure,” Senator Franken said, looking down helplessly at Senator Boxer’s legs, which were sticking out from under her desk. “I’m kinda new here. I’m just an ex-comedian. Um, can I check with my writing staff and get back to you on that?”
“Senator Franken!!” screeched Senator Boxer, climbing to her feet. “The answer is ‘No,’ you idiot. ‘No, we do not want the world to see a talking polar bear slaughtered in the chambers of the United States Senate.’ “
Looking at Senator Franken with a mix of pity and disgust, Senator Boxer pointed to the SWAT team.
“You people put away those disgusting guns. Mr. Bear if that is his real name poses no danger to anyone is this room. We invited him here. Although I’m sorry to say it, we owe him the chance to finish his propaganda speech on behalf of the criminal energy industry. You may continue with your lies, Mr. Bear not that it’ll do you any good.”
Grandpa smiled and winked at Senator Boxer.
“Thank you, Ma’am,” he said. “Unlike most of those who come to Washington, I did not come to ask the government for favors or special treatment for my species. I only ask that you treat us the way your Founding Fathers wanted all governments to treat their peaceful citizens.
“Don’t kill us, enslave us or torture us. Don’t steal from us or unfairly tax us. Don’t tell us which god we must pray to or how we must speak or think. Don’t make us wards of the Nanny State. Let us be free to live our lives as we wish as long as we don’t hurt anyone.
“As for ‘global climate change,’ we don’t understand what all the fuss and fear is about. The climate is always changing. It’s perfectly natural. It’s not a crisis for my species or for humans. We’ve already survived two ice ages 100,000 years long and we’ll survive the next one, which, by the way, has already started.”
“Distinguished Senators, do my species a favor. Do not place us on your Endangered Species list — or any other list. If as lawmakers you feel you must do something positive to help us, follow Thomas Jefferson’s advice and concentrate on protecting our natural rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. And then leave us alone.”
When Grandpa finished no one said a word. The room was completely still.
“Clap clap clap, clap, clap.”
It was Senator Specter. He liked Grandpa’s speech so much he was giving it a standing ovation. So were Senator Inhofe and Senator Franken, who were both weeping but for different reasons. So were 11 other senators on the committee and all the people in the room everyone, except Senator Boxer.
As a dozen reporters stampeded over to interview Grandpa, Senator Boxer was already on her cell phone.
“Al,” she whimpered, “You thought ClimateGate was bad. I’ve got even worse news.”