Throughout the long history of Man's relationship with the Animal Kingdom, we can now say in hindsight that we have been unfair to our fellow creatures-mainly because we've barbecued their body parts and eaten them up in large quantities.
Ever since our quadruped ancestors climbed down from the acacia trees in the Rift Valley, shed their prehensile tails, and started riding around in mopeds, we have treated animals abominably. Aside from the physical cruelty that we inflict upon them by ascribing nutritional value to their T-bone and ribs, Man has also treated animals with psychological torture. Just look at how we use the names of various animals in everyday language by attaching negative attributes to them.
In referring to our current political scenario as a 'snake pit' think of what an insult it is to snakes. Similarly, by describing the peace negotiations as moving at a 'snail's pace', we underestimate and belittle the velocity of snail locomotion. And we show a singular lack of sensitivity to the feelings of our equine friends when we wolf down hors d'oeuvres.
But as animals ourselves, and a species that has reached the pinnacle of evolution and civilisation, we have to learn to be less anthropocentric, more politically correct when referring to our four-legged and feathered friends in everyday conversation. In the beginning it will be difficult, after all we can't break a habit that we have nurtured over thousands of years to call an unpopular rival the offspring of a bitch.
As a service to our readers we offer below an introductory guide to replacing speciest language with more politically correct formulations:
WRONG: The only fly in the ointment was that the political parties refused to join the government.
CORRECT: Finally, towards the end of the cocktail reception, she mustered enough courage to whisper to him that his fly was open.
WRONG: Nepalis have now realised that you can't teach an old dog new tricks.
CORRECT: Kathmandu's canines yowled in celebration when they were told that the country was going to the dogs again.
WRONG: It is quite acceptable in politics to be a sycophant and lick your boss' ass.
CORRECT: He has been a visionary statesman for donkey's years.
WRONG: The prime minister has kept a lion's share of the portfolios.
CORRECT: Leopards are generally satisfied with the location of their spots and don't want to change them unless forced to do so at gunpoint.
WRONG: The reporters at the press conference behaved like vultures tearing at a wildebeest carcass.
CORRECT: The famished vultures nibbled at the mortal remains of a deceased gnu like a gang of journalists mobbing a press conference announcing the formation of yet another government.