Letter of the Day (May 25): Renting camels

  • Updated: May 23, 2014 - 5:58 PM

Honestly, though, I thought I’d done the legwork on the ethics of it all.


Bactrian camels are native to Mongolia and thrive in the Minnesota winter.

Photo: GLEN STUBBE • Star Tribune,

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For those of you who weren’t part of the ship of fools that ruined our block party, I would like to explain my thought process as the party organizer. It was never my intent to rent a Middle Eastern camel; I have always thought that they were inadequate and symptomatic. Rather, I had planned to rent a two-hump Bactrian camel from the Minnesota Zoo. For those ignorant protesters, I should point out that Bactrian camels come from the steppes of Asia. To the best of my knowledge, I do not believe we have any nomadic Asians on our block who would have been offended. Further, rather than animal cruelty, I had naively thought that the camel might enjoy a walkabout rather than being cooped up at the zoo. Also, with regard to accusations of promoting a negative carbon footprint, I double-checked with the zoo and was told that the camels have pooped in the past, that they continue to poop and the staff believes that they would have had normal poops had I been able to rent them for a day. I wonder if I made a mistake by not calling the block party the “Humps Day” party. My big question, however, is who is more despicable — the idiot, knee-jerk protesters, or me for knuckling under to them?

R.J. (Tate) Halvorson, Minneapolis

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