If television is to be believed, and it always is, being a police officer or firefighter is a taxing job. Not only do you have to rid the city of danger, but you have to do it while shouldering the burden of a drinking problem and keeping up an Olympic athlete's physique (unless you're the fat one with the mustache). Maintaining that kind of workload takes ninjalike concentration if the job is to be done safely and effectively. That's why it's with much uneasiness that we report on a plague of petty distraction that's overtaking the emergency response community -- stuffed animals.
The threat to public safety you're looking at is a horse. Not a real horse, of course. It's a stuffed horse. Somehow, the good people of Orlando, Florida, saw this shady character just hanging out and looking like trouble and decided they should act. Police were notified, plans were drawn up, tax dollars were allocated and then this happened ...
More like Mister ... Dead.
Now understand, detonating a stuffed horse might seem like an extreme measure, but it's not like it happened without justification. This terroristic beast was just ... sitting there. You know what else just sits there? A bomb. And this bomb just happened to be outside an elementary school. Granted, this toy horse was also outside an elementary school. But still. BOMB! (It was definitely not a bomb, for the record.)
Surely this can't be happening on a regular basis though, right? It's not like people are just itchy-trigger-fingering 911 every time a stuffed animal shows up on the side of the road.
So that's a stuffed tiger that just showed up on the side of the road. Well, you could see it from the side of the road at least. We know this because drivers were calling from the road all day long to report this nightmare scene to Houston police. Read that last sentence again slowly. It says all day long. Now look at that picture again.
This story clearly says that calls about this rogue tiger started during the day. It's just as clear that the public safety mission carried out here is being done under the cover of darkness. There are only two possibilities: Either the police started getting calls about a wild animal perched on a roof in a major city and didn't bother to go check it out until enough time had passed for day to become night, or the police showed up during the day and spent several hours trying to figure out how to get the statuelike tiger to move from its perch of stubbornness before finally settling on this:
That's a picture of police just kind of knocking it down with a stick. Remember, this is happening in a town with a murder scene that can only be described as "robust." We have to believe there's something else these brave men and women could be doing with their time.
For example, maybe they could visit England, where the stuffed tiger problem has really gotten out of hand. When reports surfaced of a white tiger prowling the English countryside, the fear and panic was such that a cricket tournament had to be shut down. You know how England loves its nutty sports, so this was obviously serious. So what did this "prowling" assassin look like?
Come on, England, that thing isn't even standing. Your police don't have guns, what else are they going to do once the animal is already lying down? Let the cops stick to watching all of those video cameras they have trained on you.
From Germany to Canada and everywhere in between, cops and firefighters are wasting their safety-providing abilities wrangling and sometimes exploding improperly disposed of stuffed animals. So please, in the interest of public safety, how about we all remember to dispose of our gigantic stuffed animals the right way by stuffing them in a dumpster in our driveway? We promise you, it will look really badass when you do it.