Most of us get a ton of forwarded emails each week. I get my share. If you do as well you know they have something in common with the jokes that also get to your inbox. That is, you have seen most of them before. Similarly, I'm sure many of you have seen the one below in the past.
I received it yesterday from a reader, and even though I had not seen this one before, it reminded me of the well traveled recipe for "How to cook a frog." Anyone who somehow missed that recipe over the years can leave a comment below and I'll retell it for you.
Let's title this one, "How To Catch Wild Pigs." We can assume it is a parable rather than a literal retelling. We can also assume it has been added to, redacted, and otherwise edited by numerous readers along the way before they passed it along to their list. I was tempted to do the same but decided against it. Here is the story.
There was a chemistry professor in a large college, who had some exchange students in his class. One day while the class was in the lab, the professor noticed one young man, an exchange student, who kept rubbing his back and stretching as if his back hurt.
The professor asked the young man what was the matter. The student told him he had a bullet lodged in his back. He had been shot while fighting communists in his native country who were trying to overthrow his country's government and install a new communist regime. In the midst of his story, he looked at the professor and asked a strange question.
He asked: "Do you know how to catch wild pigs?" The professor thought it was a joke and asked for the punch line. The young man said that it was no joke.
"You catch wild pigs by finding a suitable place in the woods and putting corn on the ground. The pigs find it and begin to come every day to eat the free corn.
When they are used to coming every day, you put a fence down one side of the place where they are used to coming. When they get used to the fence, they begin to eat the corn again and you put up another side of the fence.
They get used to that and start to eat again. You continue until you have all four sides of the fence up with a gate in the last side."
The pigs, which are used to the free corn, start to come through the gate to eat that free corn again. You then slam the gate on them and catch the whole herd. Suddenly the wild pigs have lost their freedom. They run around and around inside the fence, but they are caught. Soon they go back to eating the free corn. They are so used to it that they have forgotten how to forage in the woods for themselves, so they accept their captivity."
The young man then told the professor that is exactly what he sees happening in America .
The government keeps pushing us toward Communism/Socialism and keeps spreading the free corn out in the form of programs such as supplemental income, tax credit for unearned income, tax exemptions, tobacco subsidies, dairy subsidies, payments not to plant crops (CRP), welfare, medicine, drugs, etc., while we continually lose our freedoms, just a little at a time.
So there is the parable. It should provoke thought about where we are and where we are going as a country. I would also observe that the last paragraph seems to make the assumption that there is a conspiracy (of sorts) that has, and continues, to "push us toward Communism/Socialism" purposely. I'm not personally ready to take that leap as it stands, but neither do I dismiss the possibility out of hand.
There certainly exist in the world people who would do just that if they could. I question only whether they have been able to be successful enough in the endeavor or whether Thomas Jefferson was correct in predicting that "The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield and government to gain ground."
In either case we know one thing for sure, penned pigs usually end up being slaughtered.
Carl Holzhouser, one of the highly paid researchers for this blog sent this piece along. Good work Carl! Expect your compensation to be 20% more on your next find than you received for this one.