Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Oh Deer, It's Going to Be Some Night in Mt. Lebanon

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Oh Deer, It's Going to Be Some Night in Mt. Lebanon

Article excerpt

An emergency session of the Gently Rampaging Deer of Mt. Lebanon Coalition was called over the weekend, and hundreds of its members gathered along the fairway of the municipal golf course's eighth hole to discuss the unprecedented crisis.

The coalition's charismatic leader opened by warning what lie ahead, but he urged a spirit of quiet, collective strength.

"The traps are being put in place in the parks Monday, and any one of us who goes into a corral will be shot and killed. They will bait the corrals to make them seem as appealing as possible, but I urge you, do not fall for it. We must not be culled. We shall not be culled!"

There were shouts of assent, but one deer spoke up: "We won't be called? We won't be called what? Deer? I don't get it."

"No, no," the leader said. "Culled, with a U. It's a form of genocide perpetrated by the human invaders who arrived long after our forefathers were here. This is our land! We have rights, and we won't back down!"

The assembled herd stomped their hooves loudly in support. Normally a meek lot, they were spoiling for a fight after reading that the municipality's intent was to kill 150 of them by the end of March. One doe, in particular, had been inspired by the weekend ceremonies marking the 50th anniversary of the Selma, Ala., civil rights protests.

"I say we take the fight to Washington Road!" the doe shouted. "Tie up traffic and let them strike us with their cars and drive up their insurance rates. Hit 'em where it hurts - the only thing that people understand is money. And, of course, around here, soccer. Money and soccer."

It was agreed that a sign-up sheet would be posted at the end of the meeting for those willing to hurl themselves in front of cars at the last moment, for the good of the cause. There were always a few stags willing to do that, with the promise that they would be rewarded in heaven with a dozen does.

One dissenter, probably an infiltrator on the payroll of town officials, wondered aloud if they weren't over-reacting and overeating.

"I myself have destroyed three gardens already and am working on a fourth that belongs to what seems like a very nice middle-class family - or at least they once did," he said. …

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