Maggie Van Ostrand
the great Pluto was a travesty perpetrated on not only the American
people, but people all over the world, and the news is especially
devastating to teachers, students, and children everywhere.
Pluto has been around since 1930, when he started out as Mickey Mouse's
faithful dog, and he was also the pet of Donald Duck. Once in awhile,
he was the pet of Goofy, which was quite unusual, since Goofy is himself,
a dog. What're they going to downgrade him to, a hamster?
Even a solar system body, also discovered in 1930, was named after
Disney's famous dog. How dare science take away the Disney dog who
gave his name to part of the solar system. What's with that?
Pluto began life as a brilliant bloodhound and was designed personally
by the genius of Walt Disney. Not only that, Pluto was the first cartoon
dog to have round dimensions instead of being totally flat like all
previous cartoon characters, not to mention Kate Moss's chest. To
downgrade such an historically important creature is like taking away
Jack Bauer's cell phone.
We simply cannot get along without Pluto. Why? Because we don't want
to. We want Pluto's status restored, and we want it NOW!
They've tried to take God off our money and out of our courts, they've
tried to damage our religions, and they've said the most unkind things
about one of our favorite actors. Now they screw around with Pluto?
Will it never end?
When will enough be enough folks. Like the character, Howard Beale,
said in "Network," "I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore!!"
Open your windows and shout that out. Go ahead. Do it now.
Pluto was one of the very first cartoon characters with thought processes,
which were shown by a series of animated facial and physical expressions.
According to his entry in Wikipedia encyclopedia, "The dog's thought
processes are showcased in a landmark scene from 1934's "Playful Pluto,"
in which Pluto becomes stuck to a piece of fly paper and attempts
to figure out a way to get himself unstuck."
Any dog who can figure out how to get unstuck from fly paper should
not be taken away from us just on the whim of a bunch of guys in white
It is indeed a sign of these terrible times when scientists, who once
found cures for catastrophic diseases like polio, tuberculosis, and
flatulence, and can even clone real life dogs for heaven's sake, cannot
leave Pluto alone.
Even though Pluto has not made a major motion picture since "Who Framed
Roger Rabbit" in 1988, that's no reason to downgrade him. He starred
in 48 of his own cartoons and also appeared with Mickey and Donald
in a lot of their cartoons. It's not like he's a nobody just because
he hasn't been on American Idol.
Disney's website even quotes Pluto's favorite sayings: "Grrr..." "Snort!"
"Sniff, sniff, sniff ..." "Bark! Bark!" How many scientists can say
they've been quoted on a website as profoundly popular as Disney's?
Furthermore, how many scientists have the love of children worldwide?
If science does not change its collective mind, Disneyland will be
forced to change. Everything will have to be revamped to accommodate
these evil scientists by removing Pluto from all rides, eliminating
Pluto costumes, and creating a ban against park barking.
Well, what can we expect from a bunch of people with their eyeballs
glued to a microscope and who can't even find a cure for the common
They probably would've downgraded Mickey Mouse as well, but then,
without mouses on which to test Revlon cosmetic products, the world
would pay a heavy price -- women without make-up.
Copyright Maggie Van Ostrand
"A Balloon In Cactus"
1, 2006 column