There once was a very small snail named Jack. He was a brave fellow admired by all of his friends and family. Jack sported a beautiful, coral pink shell that other snails believed would bring him good luck and fortune some day.
One day, our friend Jack rolled his way outside into the bright sun to fetch some food for his family. As Jack whistled his way towards some crunchy-looking plants, he suddenly heard vibrations all around him. The ground below seemed to shake slightly, and before he could turn around and realize his inevitable fate, Jack was smashed underneath a large, human-sized shoe. His beautiful coral shell was crushed into a thousand little pieces. There went his luck, and Jack was no more.
Although this story is fictional and obviously exaggerated, Jack the snail represents millions of small animals and insects that get killed everyday by humans who cringe at the sight of them. We do not think twice about the living critters, including snails, slugs, centipedes, ladybugs and ants, that we destroy by simply stepping on the concrete. However small and trivial they may be physically and mentally in our minds, these creatures are all a part of the world in which we live.
I am not suggesting that you should freak out over every step you take and make sure the entire premises are clear around your shoe before placing it onto the ground. At the same time, there is no reason to spot a cricket on your carpet, scream bloody murder and put a brutal end to that poor cricket’s life. You have no idea how immature and silly you look when you allow such a small animal–yes, insects are animals–to intimidate you like that. You weigh 10 times more than the cricket and you definitely are stronger by far.
Being stronger and bigger still does not mean that you should take advantage of small animals and crush them into a pulp before flushing them mercilessly down the toilet. Instead, use your convenient human skills to help them return to their natural habitat. All you have to do is pick the critter up and set it out the door or window. Use a napkin or glass jar to pick them up if you do not want to touch it, and then set it free. It is that easy.
Besides, the cricket is known to be a lucky charm, and I am sure you do not want to throw good luck away. Of course, if you spot a bee, a brightly colored and obviously poisonous spider or other harmful insect just inches from your toe, getting rid of it is a legitimate action. However, there is no reason to kill small animals just for the sake of doing so.
There are currently over one million species of insects and a great number of other types of animals. Several of these creatures have important properties that are extremely valuable to nature. Insects in general are important when it comes to plant pollination and decomposition, both of which are essential for nature to thrive. There are also special abilities of certain insects that have benefited humans in the past. For instance, did you know that the silk of some species of moths was originally used to make clothing? I definitely did not until I googled “moths” a few months ago.
When it comes to these small critters that seem so annoying and insignificant at first glance, there is definitely more than meets the eye. We can all help prevent the extermination of these poor creatures by taking a little extra effort and time to save them and thinking twice before we decide to crush a poor snail.
Here is my current favorite song [which I cannot stop listening to]: