Elephants

 

Paul-Newell Reaves reads

Elephants

 

Elephants

The elephants charged the human encampments without mercy or tolerance.  Tusks ripped, flesh tore; feet trampled, buildings fell; beasts killed and lives were lost.
“I regret to inform you, citizens of the world,” the President spoke with a tremor in his lip, “of a mass elephant uprising in Afghanistan.  However, I encourage you, citizens of the world, not to tolerate this evil axis of elephants.”
The newsroom jumped to their feet in applause, and the President returned to his chambers.
“How could this have happened,” he trumpeted to his cabinet.  “The Middle East has no elephant population.”
“Sir,” the Secretary of State responded, “We supplied the current Afghani administration with elephants in the eighties to help combat the communists.”
“In that case sir,” the President retorted.  “I must ask for your resignation.  Good day, sir.”
The Secretary of State left the room, taking all dignity with him.
Meanwhile on the outskirts of Paris—elephants again erupted into violence, overturning cars, setting them on fire, demanding civil rights.  Many lives were lost, more property destroyed, and much comfort disrupted.
The generals from the Pentagon warily approached the President’s office.  No one was eager to bring him bad news.
“Hmmm,” the President paused and then slowly spoke.  “Gentlemen, we must choose our battlefields wisely.  We cannot be goaded into another Twainian Feud.”  Again he paused.  “We must act nobly.  Not to be swayed by the foils of profit or power, not to be misled by the lure of vengeance or momentary triumph, we must compose ourselves to an honorable tolerance.  We must adapt and we must endure.  Terror, that violent jealousy, knows neither understanding nor change.  So our battlefield will be one of knowledge.  We will build, faster and more solidly; we will fly, further and with greater prowess; we will accept, more people and more ideas; and we will employ, greater numbers and with greater consistency.  When we create and do not destroy, we are mightier than elephants.”

 

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