Wednesday, November 2, 2005

"The Politics of Penguins"

From Andrew Sullivan's essay on The March of the Penguins, "The Politics of Penguins":

[O]ne of the chief campaigners against gay marriage, Maggie Gallagher, also hailed the film. "[I]t is hard not to see the theological overtones in the movie," she wrote. "Beauty, goodness, love and devotion are all part of nature, built into the DNA of the universe. Even in the harshest place on the Earth (like 21st-century America?), love will not only endure, it will triumph."

Love? Maybe it's because these beautiful creatures have the shape of Middle Americans, waddle amusingly, fall over occasionally and have heads on top of their bodies that we project our own needs and anxieties onto them. But we do so at our peril. Love, it turns out, has very little to do with the mating habits of the Emperor Penguin.
Sullivan's essay is useful reading for anyone tempted to find models for human conduct in the animal world.

LINK: "The Politics of Penguins: A March to Nowhere" (from AndrewSullivan.com)

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