When I was in Guangzhou, I went to the Guangdong Provincial Museum, a sort of all-in-one Chinese and natural history museum. It’s government supported (with free admission) and housed in a fancy style of architecture that I just don’t get.
Anyway, inside was interesting as it basically covered just about everything you could think of. Calligraphy, artifacts, pottery. It also had a very interesting natural world section, with a large area dedicated to medicinal herbs, gems and rocks, and animals.
It was highly professional and felt similar to some of the many other museums I’ve been to. Until I got to the animal section that is, and saw this sign:
While I’m all for “humans are just animals” rhetoric this sign could have been written by a politician with it’s twisted logic. Just the first part alone, “friends of human beings,” is enough to make you laugh. They make it sound like life is like Snow White (the Disney version) with birds sitting on our fingers as we sing, and bunnies helping us mend dresses. But in the real world I think wild animals, while have proved beneifical to humanÂ development, are hardly “friends.”
But the last line is my favorite: “To protect wild animals is to protect human beings themselves!” This sounds like something developers say when they want to cover the fact they are draining wetland to build a new big box store. “Well, we might be killing off dozens of species, but humans are animals too, and we are helping them., so technically we are helping wild animals!”
But, the prize for the most absurd sign goes to this one, found in the dinosaur room.
No boys and girls, I’m afraid dinosaurs did not actually disappear from the earth “magically.” They died. Pure and simple. Some naturalÂ catastrophic eventÂ happened and they died. That’s it, no magic required. Maybe they don’t want to frighten people (if it happened to the dinos, it could happen to us!) but really, to me this is justÂ blatantÂ misinformation. But also, so, so funny.
So I think China fails this time. And yes, I feel pretty good being smarter than the multi-million dollar provincial museum. In case your keeping score I believe it is China: 1, Becky: 1.
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