On slow days — the ones with no political scandals, salacious affairs, or bloody coups to report on — “human interest” stories [sometimes] come to dominate the news cycle and, in turn, my newsfeed.
Today proved that this can occasionally happen on fast days, as well.
On a day when over 600 people died in clashes with the Egyptian military, additional details about the NSA spying program leaked, and MLB finally decided to [somewhat] extend instant reply, the two most frequently-posted items I came across on social media were, coincidentally, both about zoos.
I’ll start off with the one from China, because I’m still not entirely sure whether the Onion managed to pull a fast one on the entire world media, Chinese zoo substitutes lion for dog:
With the sun shining and kids at home for the school holidays, many families in the eastern Chinese city of Luohe decided to pay a visit to the city’s zoo this week.
But those hoping to be thrilled by the zoo’s fearsome beasts were left disappointed by a rather tamer set of substitutes.
“One family surnamed Liu took their six-year-old son to the zoo in People’s Park,” reported the local Dahe Daily newspaper.
“On the way, Mrs Liu was teaching her son all the sounds that the different animals make. But when they arrived, her son said the lion was barking like a dog.”
Turns out, that’s no lion — that’s a space station. You can read the whole article above (if you [somehow] aren’t already familiar with the story), but the main takeaway is this: people were outraged — and the Luohe Zoo became the subject of worldwide ridicule — because of a mislabeled animal in a zoo exhibit.
Meanwhile, the second story I’ve seen shared all day comes from this very hemisphere, and concerns an astonishing story of scientific discovery, Adorable new mammal species found ‘in plain sight’: a raccoon-sized critter with teddy bear looks:
Continue reading Our differing reaction to these big news stories is all kinds of hypocritical