Just when we think there isnt much to laugh at in the news these days, we can always count on the wing nuts at PETA for a gut-buster. PETA -- thats the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, as opposed to People Eating Tasty Animals -- has offered to pop for $15 million to save a 2.6 mile bridge that spans Tampa Bay.
Im talking about a former car-traffic bridge that, after being replaced with an adjacent new span, was reopened more than 10 years ago as a prime fishing-cycling-running ribbon of concrete over the water and was renamed the Friendship Trail Bridge. The converted 53-year-old bridge reportedly attracted more than 600,000 visitors annually, including lots of anglers who could hook into everything from tarpon to snook below the span. Special fishing areas were created all along the Trail.
But, it seems the old bridge has suffered from age and structural corrosion and had to be closed down a year ago to the disappointment of many. Its been determined that it will take $15 million to safely breathe an estimated 10 years of additional life into the old span. In todays economy, funds to bring back the county-owned bridge arent available, unless some one could, perhaps, find a way to tap into the federal Porkulus Bill.
But wait! All is not lost. Here comes those furry fanatics at PETA to the rescue. Yes, Im talking about the same PETA that raised a stink when President Obama swatted a fly (a darn cool move if you ask me) during a TV interview. After all, flies have rights too, dont ya know?
PETA reportedly has offered to contribute the funds necessary to keep this community treasure open. Thats $15 million to save the Friendship Trail Bridge. Oh, but there are just a couple of conditions:
First, the bridge must be renamed the Sea Kitten Memorial Trail Bridge to encourage children to think of fish as sea kittens. Its true, PETA has been pushing the idea of getting the world to rename all fish sea kittens because, they contend, people see kittens as soft furry animals and will be less likely to hurt them by fishing for them! (No, Im not kidding, thats PETAs goal!)
Second condition: Ban fishing from the bridge.
The offer was reportedly made to a save-the-bridge citizens group called the Friendship Trail Corporation. Its executive director, Frank Miller indicates his groups position is simple -- thanks but no thanks!
Now, I dont believe PETA would actually come up with the $15 million anyway. Its a wacko organization that told the Iowa State Fair it should not use butter (use a non dairy spread) for a planned Michael Jackson sculpture. I suppose the thinking there was that some cow would feel violated!
So, while youre enjoying your deep fried sea kitten sandwich, take a look at todays How I Discovered Boating video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EG8iUt0ENf4