TALLAHASSEE, Florida - Last year, 17 Florida panthers were struck and killed on roadways in that state, a record high and a devastating blow to one of North America's most endangered mammals. Only about 100 or so panthers remain in Florida, so the species has become heavily inbred.
By law, drivers already face heavy fines for speeding through known zones of panther incest, but that hasn't stopped retarded Florida motorists from occasionally mowing down a mentally deficient panther, the official state animal.
Fortunately, these big, stupid cats will soon have a high-tech big brother, a technology called Retarded Animal Detection Systems (RADS), which Florida will install this summer along a dangerous stretch of highway that runs through Big Brothers and Big Sisters Cypress National Preserve.
RADS uses lasers and ground sensors to track the movement of idiot panthers as they wander aimlessly near the roadway, then sets off flashing amber lights to warn drivers of their approach.
If a motorist refuses to heed the warnings and slow down, this triggers the deployment of a row of sharp metal spikes set across the roadway to retard the vehicle's progress.
The Florida Department of Transportation had originally planned to put in a special needs wildlife crossing and a fence, but local Indian tribes and poachers protested the intrusiveness of the plan, so the state looked to RADS for a solution.
The federal government chipped in $650,000 for the project, and the Florida Department of Transportation has committed funds to monitor the system once it has been installed.
In a move to bolster his new image as a faithful steward to the welfare of animals, a tearful Rush Limbaugh gave the project his blessing in a press conference this morning, reemphasizing that the welfare of animals and the environment really are his true passion, and that he's sick and tired of living the conservative lie.
At that very moment, the commentator was struck from behind and viciously mauled by a Florida panther with Down's syndrome.