Do Grasshoppers Have Low Self-Esteem?

Do Grasshoppers Have Low Self-Esteem?

The Queen’s Speech to Parliament has made it quite clear
Some animals have emotions like pleasure and fear
So a new Bill will in due course be brought into law
Could mean a fine if you squash Fido’s paw

Apparently if your pet has a backbone
Its rights as a creature can’t be overthrown
It’s a sentient being, sometimes happy or sad
If we upset him he’s bound to get mad

This set me wondering if I’d come a cropper
If I was cruel to a resident friendly grasshopper
Would his self-esteem be deeply offended
If I swiped at him while quite undefended

This whole notion raises issues philosophical
Even of categories quite hierarchical
Are some creatures deserving of greater respect?
While others we can quite simply neglect

I wonder if all creatures have an opinion
As king of the jungle or just a mere minion
Does a snake have a grand conceit of herself
Or the hamster abandoned on  the pet shop shelf

Birds of the air and fish of the sea
For legal protection they might have a plea
The problem is to know where to draw the line
At the golden eagle or the sharp porcupine

I’m afraid these limits can’t be clearly defined
I’m content to accept that all humankind
Deserve our respect for their self-esteem
But for slugs don’t send us to jail, that’s much too extreme

One final point about the humble grasshopper
Its jumping performance is quite a show-stopper
It can spring to a height many times its own length
You have admit that must take great strength

Ken Fisher

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